Significance of what you’ve accomplished in 40 years of marriage (Ben)

If I had to choose one word to summarize my parents 40 years together I would choose the word ‘purpose’ - Purpose in everything.

Many of you will be familiar with the ‘goal wheel’, the mealtime ‘highlights and lowlights’, and the ministry mindset that permeates all aspects of their lives. From conversations with strangers on an airplane, at Starbucks, or the grocery store, to facilitating Bethel, Perspectives and Kairos courses, ministry is usually foremost in their minds.

Their four decades of church planting ministry are consistent with this theme. They started young, planting New Life Community Church in their early 20s, moving on to a Canada wide, then European, and finally global focus.

Even in retirement - should the day of full retirement ever come - my parents’ lives will be filled with purposeful work and relationships.

I don’t know about you, but my Dad is the only person I know who has used his ‘spare time’ to develop a personal website for the purpose of maximizing impact even after his earthly life has come to an end.

Yes, this focus and sense of purpose has resulted in an impressive list of accomplishments over their 40 years of marriage. Everyone knows what they are about. While these accomplishments include past and present ministry on a macro level, they also include being available and engaged at home with kids and grandkids, never hesitating to put their list of tasks aside should anyone need to talk.

They have also set the bar high with regard to caring for their own parents and friends who have needed them along the way. Examples include my Dad’s mom living in their suite for years after my Opa passed away, and my mom’s good friend Joan Edwards, while she fought with cancer. I won’t begin to list the others who have lived with our family over the years. I know that some are here with us today.

My parents’ example of generosity and care for others, both practically and spiritually, has laid a foundation for which we, as kids are grateful, as we embark on family lives of our own.

Thank you Mom and Dad, for the great example you have been.