This week Julio and I were so excited to have the opportunity to visit two friends who have recently moved from Chicago to California. Nancy and Jerry Reed were missionaries with the Covenant Church in Latin America and we had the opportunity to serve with them in several different settings. They had recently retired and moved to California, when Jerry was diagnosed with cancer. It was with much sadness that we learned that just a few hours previous to our arrival, Jerry had been rushed to the hospital. Jerry passed away on Sunday at 1:51am. Our heart aches for his wife and children, who he leaves behind, and yet we rejoice with the angels who are celebrating his amazing life of ministry and dedication to Jesus.
On Sunday, as Julio and I had the privilege to share about our call to serve God in global mission at La Primera Iglesia del Pacto in Bell Gardens, I was overcome with tears as I read, what has become a theme verse for me and my life.2 Corithians 5:14-15 says, ” For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.” Jerry was a living example of this verse; someone who understood that his life was not his own, but that he lived for Jesus. I will never forget when Jerry came up to me after I had taught my first Spiritual Formation class at a leadership training school in Ecuador, and he told me it was the best introduction to Spiritual Formation that he had ever heard. Jerry was constantly encouraging others, sharing Jesus with others. We can only pray that we will be as effective in serving the church and sharing the Gospel with others.
We will dearly miss Jerry, but today we celebrate his life and the gift of eternal life that is offered in Jesus. To read more about Jerry and his life and ministry click here.