The Francis Asbury Society

God’s Retirement Plan

Posted on | January 28, 2016 | 1 Response

By Paul Hamann

I have had the honor for the past year and a half to serve as a volunteer at The Francis Asbury Society (FAS). This experience has proven to be much more rewarding and fulfilling than I ever envisioned and has provided blessing upon blessing.

As I looked forward to retirement, I knew I wanted to spend those years serving in some capacity of ministry. The Lord was preparing my heart to pursue volunteer work that would lend itself to my gifts and interests in a new and refreshing way, and I developed a notion of what my service should look like. Having been in public education for 40 years and over three-fourths of that in administration, I wanted to do something that would allow me to serve more as a worker and encourager than a leader. Whether this notion was developed within myself or impressed upon me from without I could not say, but given the circumstances and the opportunity, it seems clear in hindsight that my involvement with FAS was a Spirit-led appointment.

Soon after I had my ideal “job description” in mind, I saw a want ad from FAS in the bulletin at church. I could not have expressed more precisely what I was searching for than what was listed in that ad. I am confident this connection was no coincidence; it was clearly part of God’s plan, and a short time later, I was “hired” and began my “work” at FAS. When I say “work” it feels so unjust, for what I do is anything but that. The blessings I have received far outweigh any small semblance of toil or labor. These blessings have been poured out and expressed in many different ways.

As a volunteer, I am able in a subtle and covert way to support the Society’s mission of spreading scriptural holiness across the land. Working closely with the staff at FAS, I have a great appreciation for their passion to take the true gospel around the globe. While my contribution certainly does not involve me in the direct proclamation of God’s truth, it does allow me to be a part of the Body and share in the glory of its accomplishments. Any work done with and for the Body is rewarding work.

Being a volunteer and a part of the FAS organization also has given me new friends and brothers and sisters in Christ. It has been a great blessing for me to share with other followers of Christ in fellowship and prayer for the Society and its purpose. When we are all striving for the same mission and serving the same Father, we naturally are drawn into greater fellowship with one another. Within this fellowship, I also have found individuals who care about me and about the trials, pain, and hardships that life thrusts upon us all.

When I am greeted by friends these days, I often am asked, “So, how is retirement?” Subsequent statements in the conversation generally settle into the classic retirement queries of: What do you do with your time? Are you playing much golf? Doing a lot of traveling? While these questions are all well intentioned, what they really portray is our society’s obsession with the notion that we are to spend the waning years of our lives in ease and comfort. In John Piper’s book, “Don’t Waste Your Life,” he makes a point regarding the futility of a retirement wasted in any endeavor other than that which magnifies the cross of Christ. To me, while I appreciate times of leisure, golf, and travel, I agree that a retirement dominated by these activities is wasted.

Probably the greatest blessing I have received serving as a volunteer is the way that FAS has provided for me not to waste my retirement days. I have found myself working with the same dedication to my job as a volunteer as I did when I was a paid employee. Now, monetary compensation is not part of the equation. Instead, I am toiling with others to share the true message of scriptural holiness throughout the land, and my reward is eternal. Plus, when I stand before our Savior and lay down my crowns, I want to be able to show him something other than my golf handicap.

Comments

One Response to “God’s Retirement Plan”

  1. Sue McMinn
    January 28th, 2016 @ 12:03 pm

    I am 70 and still working a 40 hour week. Since my husband died over two ago I feel I need to stay active and chose to continue working.

    I agree with you, in retirement I want to stay busy too. Sounds like you have found the answer.

    I think I will volunteer at the Nursing Home that took such good care of my mom for three years before she died.

    I have just been praying that the Lord will lead me to the right time to retire.

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