Shared by Collin MacMillan on January 25, 2019

John frequently astonished me with his willingness to go "all-in" - especially when it was something that mattered to someone other than himself. He was a tremendous source of encouragement and support to me on many occasion - especially when I was seeking a closer relationship with the Lord.

In conversations, it was hard to find a "third rail" with John. He was quick about a lot of things, but quickly judging others was not one of them. He loved to "dig-in" and get to the "heart of the matter" - never shying away from a difficult topic. He always seemed to see the light at the end of the tunnel, and was willing to help you with surprising enthusiasm.

When John turned-away from family life, he sought the Lord's guidance with tremendous humility, conviction and hopeful expectation. From time to time, we would meet for lunch and he'd talk about how the Lord was working in his life despite his humble station. Still, he was all-in in his circumstance; embracing a life completely foreign or forgotten to most of us. We'd eat and talk about how his family was doing without him there; he always spoke with confidence that he would be reunited with his sons one day - if not in this life, then within the Lord's glory. 

Whatever he was suffering through, John looked for the kingdom lesson in his circumstance. He understood more than most the conflict of the two natures - the flesh and the spirit. We met for lunch one afternoon before I left Birmingham: his disposition at the time echoing Romans 7:14-25. After finishing what would be our last meal together, we prayed for strength, mercy, and God's hand in our lives and the lives of our loved ones. 

Rest well John because your have endured your trials; the Lord knows you by name, and when you knock he will certainly answer. All is now understood; you have endured in faith, and what was a humble life in Christ is now perfected in eternity. 

Reflections of John

Shared by Joie Black on January 18, 2019

When I think of John, I think of a very upbeat guy with a smile always on his face!  It's easy to see how John was a cheerleader in college, because he was always cheering everyone on wherever he went!  When John became a believer, he was just as fired up about God as he was Colorado football!  I'll never forget him telling me, "I'm so excited to be reading all about Moses, but I'm going to be really  sad when he dies!"  John had a way of making everything fun, as well as a bit  of mischief too.You never knew what he might do & he loved surprising you! We had a 50s party for a friend's birthday & he dressed up as the 50s nerd, winning the costume prize! John definitely walked to the bit of a different drummer, but whatever he did, he did 110%! He was full of life & energy......and unfortunately at 6:00 in the morning!  More than one morning, we would be barely awake & hear John outside our window with his cheerful voice saying, "HEYYYYY, it's a great day!"His brother in law once said, "John has a way of getting on your good side & bad side all at the same time".  I knew exactly what he meant. :)

 Sadly, for reasons I'll never understand this side of heaven, John detached from this great life & lost most of the things & people that were dear to him.  I don't know what were choices & what was just mental illness, but I do know we can remember a man, who at one point in his life had much to give & much to receive!  I take great comfort in knowing he is now fully whole & resting with a Father that dearly loves him.  We will miss that man! 



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