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Vantage point


Legacy

How do you measure success? When someone passes away, how do you determine how effective his life has been? Perhaps the surest measure is found in what one has left behind. Pastor Ray Horwege recently passed away. And he left a legacy … I am part of it.

A godly man never leaves completely, because every godly man leaves good behind him — the fruit of his good deeds, the lives he has touched, the souls he has led to Jesus, and the men and women he has discipled.

Ray Horwege lived to minister. His whole life was wrapped up in serving Jesus and touching lives. I was his first youth pastor, fresh out of Bible college. The first pastor a young minister serves under has a tremendous opportunity to instill in him the spiritual qualities that he himself has attained. Ray did that with me and with many others. He let me make mistakes and helped me correct them. He overlooked faults and praised victories. He helped mold my character.

When he passed away he was 79 and still going strong. As the seniors pastor at Calvary Temple in Concord, Calif., he was still ministering to a group larger than many congregations. He told his wife, Barbara, he would not retire until he was 80, despite bearing the marks of a devastating automobile accident that would have given him reason. Ray’s dedication was inspiring.

Ray Horwege lives on in the lives of the many he has discipled — numbers of which are in full-time ministry. If I do any good and godly things throughout the balance of my life, Ray lives on in them.

I dedicated my book Living Like Jesus to him and Barbara because that is what they taught me.

Other ministers have had bigger congregations, traveled more and made bigger splashes than did Ray Horwege. But I am convinced that few have had a greater impact on the Kingdom.

Let us all realize the impact that countless unsung heroes of the faith have made who, like Ray Horwege, have sought no approval or recognition but our Lord’s. And let us thank God.

Ken Horn

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