The unexpected passing of a good friend is a reminder to me of many important things. We know that this life is fleeting, but despite our best efforts, the frenetic pace can contribute to valuable things being left unsaid, especially with those whom we are close. My friend didn’t fall into that trap. Whether by a quick call or email message, I knew where he stood - where we stood. And with that, though jumping straight to the killer guitar solo instead of playing the whole song that I expected to hear, I know in my grieving heart that it is OK, we are OK.
Unassuming and non-preachy, Ken dared to share his own unmasked character and gave friends and family the gift of his perspective while he sought to continually grow into the man of God’s vision. A brave soul who lived the principles of iron sharpening iron, through his own life he encouraged me in three ways I’ll promise to remember:
Own it – We shape and define what is good, right, worthwhile and beautiful in our life. Misery is easily found – but so is joy.
Claim it – We are who we are as a function of our victories, yes, but our greater learning comes from our mistakes. Ken told me that shame and regret is a waste of time, but can serve as a motivator to choose the correct paths in our lives, each day.
Speak it – What good is insight, love or friendship if you don’t share it? Ken wasn’t too busy to remind me that I was important to him, that we are incredibly lucky in this life no matter the challenges we face, and that there is absolute bliss in knowing our God can do what we cannot.
Finally, as Ken so often told me, the things that become or seem so important to this life are pale in comparison to the gift of our salvation. I know, without question, that my friend Ken has been welcomed by his Heavenly Father to eternal life – to the big stage – and that he’s plugged in and ready to roll.
Fatherhood Challenge: Own it, claim it, and speak it today - for we know not the day nor the hour...
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:
The old has gone, the new is here!” 2 Corinthians 5:17