Delighting in the Lord

God has blessed me with a long journey. I became a follower of Christ at age 14, so my story is really His story—I take no credit for anything good I have accomplished. I have lived keenly aware of Jesus’ statement, “… apart from me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). As a kid, I was so bashful that I would rather fail an English class than give an oral book report before my fellow students. A call to teach and preach was at the very bottom of my list of future careers. However, God calls all of us to follow Him on a journey. Although my journey has not always been easy, God has blessed it in many ways.

My desire was to be a pilot; if not for God’s call on my life, I would have chosen a career in aviation.

A life verse I have claimed is, “Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).

Because I continually chose to delight in the Lord and surrender my life to Him, He made a way for my desires to be fulfilled. For 20 years, I led a group of pilots who flew blood for the Red Cross.

His blessings continued in all areas of my life. One of the greatest joys in my life has been to be a part of mission work in Haiti. For more than 35 years during the many trips serving my brothers and sisters in this beautiful country, I have seen God’s grace and mercy at work repeatedly. I was privileged to help start a mission organization called International Allied Missions (IAM). I love and appreciate my many friends all over the world.

I have pastored churches in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, Alabama, and Tennessee. Even though I’m getting older, I have no intention of retiring from my call. At present, I am serving as an interim pastor at a church near my home.

At this stage on my journey with Christ, I feel the pull of two worlds: the spiritual gravity of this world pulls me to keep sharing the good news of Jesus, but the yearning for heaven also tugs on my heart. I remember hearing the astronauts on their first trip to the moon talk about leaving the gravitational pull of the moon and returning to the gravitational pull of earth. Like the astronauts, I am in between—but at 81 years old, the pull toward my heavenly home gets stronger day by day. Nevertheless, my heart remains fixed on Jesus, the “author and finisher of our faith,” (Hebrews 12:2) and His will for my life. 

For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain (Philippians 1:21-23). To God be all glory and praise for His story written in my life!

James Spruill is a retired minister still working for the Lord. He and his son Mark together wrote a book titled Reflections of Our Journey.

Please note: All facts, figures, and titles were accurate to the best of our knowledge at the time of original publication but may have since changed.