For the past several days, I’ve watched the countless social media posts honoring and celebrating the life of Pastor Kerry Davis, of Evansville, IN.
I didn’t write one, preferring to do it here, but I loved reading them, knowing how deeply Kerry would be touched at the virtual outpouring of love in his honor.
I’m confident my feelings are echoed by hundreds, if not thousands, in that I’m thrilled for Kerry to be out of this race of life. During his earth-bound pilgrimage, he suffered often. Mostly it was due to physical challenges. But it was too often due to having his heart-broken.
Despite the heartbreak, Kerry loved big and beyond them, never holding a grudge, praying for anyone and everyone the same as if they were his most loved and trusted friend.
When emotions were running high, Kerry could be counted on to be the balm of reason. He wasn’t a perfect man but he was a great man--a man with a clean heart and a right spirit.
I dunno anyone Kerry knew, that he didn’t love. He looked for the best in people, and when he found it, he maximized on it, encouraging them to grow in good directions.
Kerry could nurture the most shy of folks into excellent public speakers. For the musician lacking confidence, he could cultivate them into being comfortable playing before large crowds, and even be excited about it.
He loved for real--even those who established themselves as his enemies. He prayed for them to let the Lord help and heal their heart. Thankfully, these folks make up a miniscule amount in comparison to his devoted tribe.
I can’t say how much he’ll be missed. I don’t have a word or phrase to adequately cover it. The fingerprints of his influences are all over every place he’s ever been. I can’t leave my drive-way without remembering Vacation Bible School, Thanksgiving and Christmas gatherings here in the Community Center, playing in the yard at his grandparents' house in Pumpkin Run. Their farm sat right across the road from our farm and we visited often.
He could sing music, play music and write music and all of it conveyed the message that we are not alone, we’re “fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14) and that once we’re finished with this pilgrimage, the long home (Ecclesiastes 12:5) awaits us. There our tears will be wiped away by the One who loves us most and we’ll never have to be separated by physical death again.
Kerry has been the brother of my spirit. He prayed for me when I was sick, encouraged me when I was struggling through discouragement, and pointed out the clear way when I wanted to take another direction. He always believed I’d come back to the path I was meant to travel and he was right. I did, and have continued along it since then.
The tears have flowed and many of our hearts ache to see your smile and hear your voice just once more, but God, in His great grace, comforts us in the pain of your absence.
“The cost of being here....” It’s high, yet worth every bit of it.
You were with me when I was baptized in Jesus’ name. You were praying with me a year later, the night I received the baptism of the Holy Ghost. I delivered my first “official” sermon in your living room, via a remote broadcast during the beginning months of the ‘Rona rampage. A few months later, I performed my first baptism in your church.
When it’s my turn to be called to the Long Home, I’m confident you’ll be one of the first to greet me when I arrive, and I’ll miss you every day in between.
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