In the early days we seldom consider the tremendous impact which small things have in our lives. Abilene Texas was a place where such an event took place. Randy and I were co-laborers in a small church in turmoil. I was the legalistic, narrow minded, only doctrine matters, young preacher and Randy was the son of such a man, wanting to explode the love of Christ free in those who claimed Jesus as Savior.
I dabbled in the ministry at the conservative “no drums allowed” radio station in Abilene and Randy at the “contemporary” station. In answer to much prayer by my wife (who always considered Randy as her confidant and Pastor) and many others, I agreed to go to what I considered a “so-called” Christian concert at a local stadium/event center. My thoughts were condescending and self righteous as we approached the building. Randy was his usual encouraging, patient yet passionate self.
We entered the hall and Randy introduced my to his boss at the radio station, Jack. He had already had many conversations with Randy about our church situation and immediately turned to his wife and introduced me as a Servant of the Most High God. Although I considered myself a child of God and a worker in His cause, I had not know such a exalted description. It was exactly the connection Randy had attempted to apply in many of our “coffee after midnight” theological discussions. He had a higher, holier, closer and much more Jesus loving spirit then I saw in myself. It suddenly clicked into place for me. I left that concert with a renewed spirit and a closer walk with my friend, Randy.
There were difficult days ahead in Abilene and the Lord had many things to teach us. Randy considered me as a mentor and may not have known the serious impact his gift made upon someone ten years older than him. A few years ago, I contemplated the treasures God had deposited in my life in a post:
“I think and write and speak from the fertile abundance of mercy He has poured into my life through so many of His chosen vessels. Roy Grigsby, Randy Jenkins, Dave Lewis, these were great men of renown, giants in the land of faith. To be fair, many unsung heroes defined my path as well. Among whom were Vivian Bryant, Mamie Seay, Bridgette, Joshua and Kim. They will never know this side of heaven, how they were used to move me. My experiences have shown me no one is greater than one who knows they are least. No one is worthy of following who leads without serving. Even the weakest and most pitiful lay up treasures in heaven when they obey.”
That was true of my friend Randy. He was chosen, obedient, and faithful. A few years later he and Cherie visited us in Ohio and he helped put the siding on my house. It was then that we once again enjoyed a few of our “coffee after midnight” theological discussions.