Monday, October 11, 2010

mentors & models

As we attempt to grow in faith and maturity, we are so thankful to have role models that show us what it means to love sacrificially.  When I think about the verse in Ephesians 4 that instructs us to walk as Jesus walked - a handful of people come to mind.

This post is about four of them.
Rosemond, Beth & John McHoul

These four don't come to mind because they are perfect or never make mistakes. That isn't the case. The reason I think of them has more to do with longevity. These are people that have been actively trying to walk as Jesus walked for many years.  They have learned things we still need to learn.

Over and over I have watched the McHouls extend grace to people that were not necessarily so easy to extend grace to ... again and again I have heard John say, "He's not who he will be." (Meaning - we're all in process and hopefully constantly growing.)

Any missionary will tell you that a deep love for the people they serve has been planted by God; it makes the day to day cultural headaches easier to tolerate. Yet even with that extra measure of grace there are challenges and great disappointments. Beth and John are kind and considerate to the Haitians they partner with and the Americans that visit and come and go. After 21 years of answering the same questions over and over they still sit with a new guest and answer the questions all over again. It is humbling to see their love in action.

They remind us by example not to expect every person we work with or come in contact with to be right where we are. By demonstrating a love for people who are at times unkind and judgmental; they are challenging us and teaching us much.
Jimmy & Janet Dorrell

Jimmy and Janet Dorrell are our Waco, TX heroes.  The first time I visited their church I wept the entire service. I called Troy in Haiti to tell him he had to see and experience it. Within a few months Troy visited and was equally touched.

Last Sunday as we pulled into our parking spot at Church Under the Bridge I said to Troy, "I am amazed that they do this week after week and year after year."  In all honesty I occasionally find myself not wanting to interact with the homeless and the addicted and just looking for a Sunday of keeping to myself.  Yet I know Jesus calls me to do exactly what Jimmy and Janet have been doing for decades.  Every single day/week Jimmy is hugging and loving and touching people that the rest of the world would cross the street to avoid.  He and Janet are friends to the lost, hurting, disabled, and afraid in Waco. It is humbling to see their love in action.
worship under the bridge

It is thrilling to see these four people accept others for who they are -- and not in spite of it.They see people for who they can be - the same way Christ sees us. There is great value in finding people that love and serve well and watching them.

We are carefully watching John and Beth and Jimmy and Janet . We're grateful for them and challenged by their beautiful examples of walking as Jesus walked.

(All photos lifted off of Facebook without permission.)