I have stared at this blank computer screen for almost 15 minutes. I have written and deleted and re-written and re-deleted the opening lines half a dozen times. It’s not that I have writer’s block. It’s not that I don’t know what to say. It’s that I want to write about Richard Dutton and Bob Robertson. And I’ve got way too much to say.
Our family of God here at Legacy is hurting today. It was a tough weekend. And a glorious one.
It’s going to be a tough next couple of days, a tough week. And it’ll be glorious.
Richard Dutton, a long time Legacy member-deacon-songleader-teacher, passed away Friday. Bob Roberston, a long-time Legacy member-elder-teacher passed away less than 24 hours later. They both died surrounded by their families, wrapped in the loving arms of our God, and forgiven by the blood of our Savior.
I want my words about these two great men of faith to do justice to their lives of sacrificial service to our God and his Kingdom. And I find that my words are neither big enough nor beautiful enough.
I want my words about Richard and Bob to adequately express what they have meant to me and my preaching ministry here at Legacy. I want to tell you about the encouragement, about the cards and emails, about the pats on the back, about the prayers. And I find that I don’t have enough space to even start to describe how these two men have lifted me up.
I want my words about these dear brothers to comfort you if you’re grieving their deaths, to inspire you, to encourage you, to give you great hope. And I find that my words are wholly lacking when stacked next to the actual lives of these two Christian disciples.
Both Richard and Bob gave everything they had to the Lord. They submitted fully to him. Every action, every thought, every word was subject to Christ. They bowed to Jesus hourly. They reflected the glory of our God continuously. Their faith in him was unshakeable. Their trust in him, immoveable. And nothing would keep them from serving and loving and exhorting and praying and teaching and sacrificing in his great name.
It was my honor to know these two men. And I thank God for allowing me the privilege to pray and study and worship with them, to serve with them, to be friends with them.
“When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: ‘Death has been swallowed up in victory!’ …Thanks be to God, he gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ!” ~1 Corinthians 15:54-57
I imagine that when Richard and Bob breathed their last breaths in this time and space dimension, our Father nudged the angels in glory and said, “See? Now THAT’S what I’m talking about!”
Thank you, God, for Richard and Bob. Lord, come quickly.