Today, I am officiating the funeral of one of my favorite people and a wonderful man of God, Dennis Dewayne Farr. Thinking of Dennis, I am reminded of his eyes. Often, he had a twinkle in them followed by a chuckle. However, I have seen those same eyes with a firmness and resolve…time to get on with things and stop dilly dallying around. He spoke straightforwardly with very few excessive words. His dry wit was hilarious. Dennis was a great husband and an even better Dad. He loved deep and wide and was frequently concerned with the less fortunate who crossed his path and usually helped them tangibly. I loved this man and will miss him.
Candidly, I want to argue with God about taking Dennis away from us too soon at the age of 61 but am reminded by his chuckle along with a quick-witted remark, “Rick, you know that my favorite Bible verses are Proverbs 3:5&6, so, get on with believing them.” These verses speak wisely and powerfully, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on you own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your path straight.” God instructs us to trust the Lord with all our heart, meaning at the very core of your mind where thoughts are generated. If you want to eventually end up with a straight path, trust Him at the source of your being. Proverbs 4:23, a comparable verse, reminds us to “guard our heart diligently. Out of it comes the issues of life!”
Then, these verses tell us to lean not on my own understanding forewarning us to watch out for negative self-talk. What are we saying to ourselves? Does our self-talk constantly spout out erroneous lies or are we reminding ourselves consistently of the truth? Many of us are mentally unhealthy because we continue to speak harmful, deceptive lies to ourselves. Proverbs 25:4&5 gives us guidance here, Show me your ways, Lord, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.
“In all your ways acknowledge Him.” Wholly trusting God and diligently guarding your self-talk enables you to acknowledge Him recognizing and becoming obedient to His desires for you. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach (truth) and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him (Colossians 3:16&17). Acknowledge Him.
If you do the three things above (trust completely at the core of your mind, keep your mind stayed on truth and acknowledge Him), your paths will be straight.
Dennis has passed away, but His legacy based on the testimony of his life will challenge the next generations to love like Jesus and hold fast to the truths found in His Word.
See you soon Dennis!