Today, rather than the usual article, I’d like to give a shout out to James Meadows for his 88th Birthday coming up this weekend! Many of you already know who James is. But if you don’t, James was one of my instructors at ETSPM, now SEIBS, and he is a true reflection of Christ-likeness.
I’d like to share 4 memories of James as I thank him and wish him a happy birthday…
#1, James used gentle, but direct, correction. One time, when discussing a Bible study I was having with someone, I shared my frustration at their lack of progress. Somewhat jokingly, I said, “Sometimes you just want to shake people!” James looked me sternly in the eye, and said, “GREGORY, was that the way you were converted?” I sheepishly answered, “no, sir.” Ever since, I have tried to remember to allow people to grow and examine the evidence at their own pace.
#2, When a student said something correct, (or just obvious), James often replied, “this, of course, is true.” He knows truth when he hears it, because he studies truth and speaks truth. He taught us without judgment, but with conviction. His loving, yet honest style even got him invited to preach at some interesting places! In the years since school, I continue to grow in my appreciation of his style of truth spoken in love.
#3, He expected excellence. When I got a 99 or 100 on a test, he would always say, “Is that the best you can do?” He was joking – I think! He was never mean about grades or overbearing. He simply gave his best, and he expected it from us as well. I appreciate that.
#4, He always had time for students. I think it was because he was the first one to school and got his work done by 5am! You simply couldn’t beat the guy there. But James always took time for his students – in the hallway, his office, or the classroom. He genuinely tried to help us succeed in every way.
James, I truly appreciate you! Happy birthday, and may God bless you, brother!