Facts of the Matter

A weekly letter of encouragement and challenge to business and professional men and women
Wednesday, September 21, 2005
Dear Colleagues,


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Some time ago, I received this letter from Jim Kennedy who himself, has an extensive discipling ministry across the U. S. and in various parts of the world. The letter is worthy of careful thought:

"Gene Warr is the friend who led me to Christ in 1969. His example of knowing Christ is what really drew me. My life was empty and purposeless and he sensed that and spoke of the practical reality of faith in Christ and the hope of meaningful existence.

"He was a man of incredible strength and stamina. He swam every day, worked out with exercises and sparred with a punching bag. In WWII, he was a tank commander with General Pattons army in Europe. He hunted nearly everything and never came back empty handed. He spoke at church groups and Christian conferences all over the globe. His first marriage ended in divorce, but he married Irma and they have had a wonderful time together ever since.

"He was always available to me, even though I might be interrupting a million dollar deal. He always took my call. He built his company. He had a vibrant discipling ministry. He witnessed to everything that moved. More than any man I have known he gave life his all. He followed Jesus as his Lord. He was friend to small and great, but always humbly gave credit to God. He has consistently given exactly 50% of his annual income to the Lords work. He has really lived.

"But, now he is suffering Alzheimers and is on a steep curve downward. Yesterday I quoted verses to him and he could occasionally finish the last one or two words. If he tried to get a sentence out, he would stall in the middle and mumble the last part. He is content and characteristically humble, gracious, and grateful. He smiles and looks attentively to everyone who enters although he knows almost no one. He knows when you are praying and helps you along with AMEN, AMEN.

"The point is, that this legend is coming to an end. The message to me is to get on the ball and get it done while there is yet time. A friend once said, "Live in such a way that you are prepared to preach, pray, or die at a moments notice."

"Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. (Psa. 90:12)

"For the past 25 years, Gene kept a running countdown in his diary of the number of days left until he was 70, his expected Biblical lifespan. When he hit 70, he started counting up the days he was living by Gods Grace. In one sense, he was counting the days, but in practice he was making the days count.

"Are we making the days count? Or merely counting the days. As one gets older, most likely he will make some adjustments in the physical expectations, although we may be more capable than we suspect. I met up with J. Oswald Sanders when he was 83 on a nine-month preaching tour of North America. He casually mentioned he was preaching an average of twice per day with only two days off. When asked how he kept it up, he said, "I believe that whatever the Lord calls me to do, He will supply the ability to do it." Not only did he outlive three wives, he wrote numerous books with a yellow pad and pen."

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