I wrote the following note for the bulletin at Calvary Baptist Church in Englewood, FL, the Sunday after my father passed away:
On behalf of our family, I would like to express our deep gratitude for your support, not only in this difficult time of our loss, and of your loss, but through the many years of fruitful ministry together in this place.
Dad was never happier in ministry than he was here at Calvary Baptist. He loved to tell me about you, and about his great joy in serving you. He was grateful for your love for him and for his wife, and I doubt if I ever spoke to him from my home in Michigan without him saying something good about one of you, or all of you.
That is not to say his ministry was without difficulty and even pain. Nor is it to suggest that he was himself was without flaws. But he had a good and gracious heart which he freely offered to all of us, and he shouldered both the rewards and the responsibilities of his calling with humility and integrity.
And now he is gone. None of us understand why. And it is unlikely that we ever will. Grief will roll over many of us like waves in unexpected ways and in unexpected places and at unexpected times. We depended on him for so much.
But God in his wisdom has called this godly father, husband and pastor to a perfect sabbath rest. Some of the things we depended on him for we will now have to do for ourselves. Or for each other. Or simply wait for God to do.
This is good, and necessary, but it is not easy. God’s will for each of us, and dad’s desire for all of us, is that we should continue to be transformed by the grace of God and changed day by day into the perfect likeness of His Son.
This too is one of those days.
Thank you again for your many kindnesses to him and to all of us.
Wally Metts, Jr.