When I was young I wanted to be just like Roy. He was a preacher, and I saw him as a hero who was larger than life. I couldn’t wait to grow up and be just like him. I wanted to preach and was encouraged by him to get into ministry. It was Roy who told me when I was young that I ought to be a preacher because preachers only worked one day a week. I liked the idea of a one-day-a-week job and so here I am today, a preacher who now realizes that he was duped into believing the “one day a week” thing.
When I started preaching, it was Roy that gave me some of the best advice I ever got: “Studying for your sermon is important, but praying over your sermon is even more important.” I can’t count the amount of times I called him to ask him advice in my ministry. One of the greatest things that happened in my young preaching career was when Roy gave me all his sermon notes. He’d stopped preaching and told me to use them if I wanted. Getting those little jewels was like finding buried treasure. They were notes full of wisdom and preparation. I referred to them often, especially when preaching on difficult subjects.
Roy passed away unexpectedly this past Sunday at the young age of 59. Today I’ll preach his funeral. If you don’t mind I could sure use a little prayer from you today, that I might keep my composure while doing the service. Roy’s death leaves a big hole in a lot of lives including mine. My heart has been heavy and the pain in my stomach won’t go away. He was my friend, my hero and a mentor in life and ministry. I already miss him terribly.
August 4, 1948 – March 2, 2008
Roy’s family was the apple of his eye, but the Lord was the King of his life. Today I give God thanks for placing Roy in my life.