A Legacy of Love

Words fall short.

Pastor Vernon McGarvey, a dear friend and mentor, passed away last weekend.

He was ill, but I thought I would have more time with him. I won’t insult the delicacy of the matter by trying to sum up his life here in this space. His departure is still quite jarring, and I miss him dearly.

For a leader of a church that some might call traditional or old-fashioned, Pastor McGarvey was surprisingly progressive and cultured.  He never stopped learning. He was just as excited to share a new scriptural discovery with me as he was to share a meal around the dinner table.

We didn’t have a close relationship my entire life. However, once we became acquainted,  he quickly became a sort of adviser to me. Virtually every time I was with him or heard his booming baritone voice, he inspired me to transcend the circumstances of my life and to become more — to become all — that God wanted me to be. I felt a genuine, fatherly love from my time with him. I respect this man more than any that come to mind. So I now join a chorus of people who have been encouraged, inspired, and challenged by this great example of servant leadership. He left behind a strong family and a strong church.

This was a life well-lived. He spent his time investing in others and making those around him better equipped to succeed. He was a lover of God and a lover of souls.

Love is his legacy.

To learn more about Pastor Vernon McGarvey, check the McGarvey family blog.

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