Sandy Ford was a year ahead of me in college. We lived in the same dorm. I admired him during our days in Chapel Hill because he was known on campus as a contagious Christian… one who took His commitment and faith in Jesus very seriously. He was a leader with a campus ministry called InterVarsity. His dad was Leighton Ford. His uncle was Billy Graham. He was handsome, athletic, godly, and seemed to have everything going for him.
He had one problem. His physical heart was defective. He had what is known as cardiac dysrhythmia. During his junior year, he had to undergo surgery to attempt to correct this problem.
In his hospital room before surgery, he took a moment to share with his mom and dad this particular Scripture promise: Psalm 73:25-26 – “Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”
When the surgeons finished their work, they tried in vain to restart his heart. On that operating table at Duke Hospital, he went home to be with Jesus at the young age of 21.
Sandy’s life as well as his death furnish us with strong encouragement to persevere in trusting and serving the Lord Jesus. How happy to set out early in the heavenly race, to continue walking with Jesus steadfastly for a lifetime, and to finish the course with joy! Joseph did this. Sandy did this. So may we.
Even when the pains of death are upon us, if we have trusted in Him upon whom the patriarchs, prophets, and apostles depended, we need not fear to say, “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever.”
One day all of our physical hearts will fail too, do you personally possess the faith to not only live by but to die by? There is a God in heaven and He is the only one worthy of our heart’s devotion and desire.
The Lord wants to be the strength of our hearts and our portion forever through simply receiving, resting, and trusting in Jesus Christ as the only Savior of sinners like us. Have you taken this vital step of faith?
Sandy did so and he is more alive today than he ever was on this earth. The same future can be yours as well. What is keeping you from trusting Him for your eternal future? All you need to do is look at Sandy’s life… 21 short years. Time is so short and eternity is forever. Don’t wait!