by: Steve Heidenreich
I was out walking one day and was praying and thanking the Lord for all that He’s done for me. Now that I have been saved for over 40 years, I was going back and remembering the blessings He has given me over the years. The first thought that came to my mind was the greatest day of my life; that was the day when I trusted Jesus Christ as my Saviour. Since that day I have seen great and mighty things that the Lord has done in my life. As I am coming into my later years of life, I still want God to do some more great and mighty things through me. Some people, as they get older, want to slow down and retire from being used as much. I don’t know about you, but I want to finish my life as a faithful, effective, soul winning Christian.
Caleb is one of my favorite men in the Old Testament. In the later years of his life he didn’t want to slow down, he still wanted to keep going and conquer great things for God. As I continued to walk down the road and talk to the Lord, I reminded Him of some of the great things that I have seen because of Him and that I wanted Him to continue to allow me to see.
First of all, I’ve seen His heart. I have seen God’s love for mankind. He created mankind to fellowship with Him and to live with Him forever. It amazes me that the God of Heaven Who created everything wants to spend time with us. I don’t know about you, but I like to get alone and spend time with my Heavenly Father. When I get up in the morning and take our little dog, Mario, for a walk, I have the opportunity to look to the sky and say, “Jehovah God, I love you!” I enjoy having a time of fellowship with Him. When I pray, I ask God to continue to use me greatly and help me to be a faithful effective soul winner. His heart is not only for people, but also for the Gospel of Jesus Christ that can save them so that He can fellowship with them for all eternity. God’s heartbeat is for world evangelism. John 3:16 shows us this when it says, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
Secondly, I have seen His people. God has graciously allowed me to be a missionary and travel all over the world and meet all types of people. I see how precious they really are to Him. I see how Satan and false religions have turned them away from God. It’s so sad to see people seeking for a God Who loves them and ends up with a god made by hands that has no heart for them. I thank God that I serve the true and living God, Jehovah, Who truly loves me and cares for me. I had an opportunity to travel to a country in Europe that had been under communism for years. What a tragedy to see people who were told there was no God and because of that they had no one to love them and give any kind of hope for living. Again, I am reminded by God of the very reason I want to continue serving Him in my older years. It is because of the people that I have seen that makes me beg God to continue to use me.
Thirdly, I have seen that the laborers are few. As a very young Christian, one of the first things I read in the Bible was that the “harvest is plenteous, but the laborers are few.” I decided right then and there that I would be one of the few. I have seen the heart of God and I have seen the people who are the object of the love of that heart. But, there has to be laborers to go to the people whom He loves to tell them of His great love for them. It is hard for me to comprehend that many of the few laborers are leaving the labor force for a place of comfort and ease. With the condition of most of our churches, our country and the world, it is not a time to step back but a time to step up.
God has shown me a few things to help me to continue to be one of the few faithful laborers for the rest of my life. He told me to never quit having a pioneering spirit. There has to be a group of pioneers, no matter their age, who will keep moving forward conquering new areas for Christ. He also said there must be a group of laborers who are always strengthening and encouraging others to keep moving forward. In the day in which we live many of God’s laborers are becoming weary in the battle. Let’s do our best to encourage each other along the way. The last thing He said to me was to never quit. The last thing we need is for the few to toss in the towel and quit.
Do you see what I see? I hope so because our future depends upon it.
Dr. Steve Heidenreich