Building One Another

E. Stanley Ott

GRATEFUL Vol 10 No 25

September 20, 2011

Dear Friend,

 As a graduate student at Purdue and a person of new Christian faith, the church was yet to become an essential facet of my Christian life.  Looking for a K-Mart one Sunday morning I managed to get lost and drove up in front of Covenant Presbyterian Church at 11:00 a.m.

Worship was just beginning and I thought, “I guess I’ll go to church.”  I noticed in the church bulletin the announcement of a college group meeting in the home of the associate pastor. So the next Sunday I went to that home and rang the doorbell.

 A pleasant gentleman came to the door, put out his hand and said, “Hi, I am Jim Walker.” I replied, “I am Stan Ott,” and so began a friendship that has lasted forty years.  Jim and Charlotte pulled me into the small group of collegians that met with them every week. 

I can remember the group praying one Sunday morning and hearing a strange voice speaking only to realize it was me, praying out loud for the first time!  That group and the ministries of that congregation were the centering reality that led me to love and appreciate the God who loves us and the people of God who love, guide, tutor, and lead us.

Jim became a friend, mentor, and father-in-the-faith.  Jesus said we have many mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters among those who follow him. Jim and Charlotte were all of that to us. From Jim I learned the “Word-Share-Prayer” pattern of small group life that I have since taught to many thousands of people.  I learned practices of warm-hearted leadership from him.  I learned about grace and love observing his marriage to Charlotte.

Jim joined the church triumphant last week.  I and a great host of people will always love and appreciate him.

Think about the friends and mentors our Lord has put into your life.  Be grateful.  I know I am.


With joy - E. Stanley Ott
Copyright 2011 E. Stanley Ott