by Jay Kelly
“Jonathan said to David,’Whatever you want me to do, I’ll do for you.’”
-I Samuel 20:4
“And Saul’s son, Jonathan, went to David at Horesh and helped him find strength in God.” -I Samuel 23:16
25 years ago this month I was studying the bible with Gary Knutson at Bridgewater College outside of Boston. Gary and I always had relationship challenges, but he knew and loved the word of God and was devoted to teaching me the truth, whether I appreciated it or not. I would eventually be baptized on December 16, 1984. A few weeks before my baptism there was a campus devotional led by Frank Kim entitled, “Doing Well Spiritually over Christmas Break.” I was working that Friday. Gary wanted me to switch shifts or take a personal day or whatever I needed to do to hear Frank’s message. Gary was very concerned that if I were to be baptized before Christmas break and have a month in New York/New Jersey away from the body I might not make it. I wasn’t as interested as he wanted me to be and after several back and forth exchanges I hung up the phone in anger.
Over the years I’ve bumped into old friends from my early Christian days in Boston who have said with surprise, “Jay, wow, you’re still faithful?” I was the least likely to succeed in many people’s minds. I couldn’t have made it spiritually all these years without countless friends, “Jonathans”, who’ve helped me find strength in God.
I made a list of 60 names. I decided not to post them knowing I would likely forget the one person who is actually reading this and was forgotten for the moment. Make your own list of Jonathans. Who are the people who’ve helped you find strength in God over the years?
Have fun growing in gratitude. Hope this helps. See you tomorrow,