Jim Langley: Following in My Father’s Footsteps | Homes & Lifestyle

As my senior year at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio came to an end, I quickly realized my collegiate baseball career would end on a sour note. My last at-bat against a Sam Houston State left-handed pitcher ended in a contested third strike.

With that strikeout, Dad’s dream of my pursuing a Major League Baseball career went right down the drain.

Fortunately, I had an out, another out — with my commission as an Army officer upon graduation, I took the alternate route — a military career. My Dad served in the armed forces for 28 years. Joining at the tender age of 16, Col. Ross Langley retired when he was only 44.

Following in my father’s footsteps seemed a good move, since I was raised in a patriotic environment and truly desired to serve my country during the Vietnam War. I was young and strong and felt pretty invincible. And, our armed forces had been quite good to Dad.

He moved up through the ranks with a paltry ninth-grade education to overseeing the total operations of McChord Air Force Base near Tacoma, Washington, during the last year of his military service in 1955.

By the way, after committing to my Army commission, I garnered a very productive season of summer baseball in my hometown. But I was focused on my career direction while still honoring Dad.

After 18 months of Vietnam service and successful completion of the Signal Officer Advanced Course as a young captain, I finally had the pleasure of leading a Signal Company at Fort Huachuca, Arizona. Upon completing that six-month assignment, I decided to depart the military and embark on a career in corporate life.

That corporate stint lasted 13 years. Just before my 40th birthday, I made the transition into my current insurance profession. Thirty-eight years later, I still rise early most mornings looking forward to serving my many clients. And, for the past 37 years I’ve attempted to follow my Heavenly Father’s footsteps.

Following in the footsteps of my Heavenly Father has been an awesome goal. After all, I’ve come to realize that He’s been watching over me all these years and I owe everything to Him.

He is my Savior and my Lord. Yes, His footsteps of him, best represented by the life of His Son Christ Jesus, are certainly not attainable, but they represent the standard we should all strive to achieve.

As a follower of Christ, I also look to numerous biblical characters who lived lives worthy of honorable mention in God’s Word. Reading through Hebrews 11, described as the faith chapter, can greatly encourage us all as we face challenges in this world in which we all presently live.

Hebrews 12:1-2 sums up the example of those faithful to the cause of Christ: “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and Perfector of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Here’s my bottom line, folks: We’d all be wise to do our best to follow the ways of Jesus. After all, He represents what our Heavenly Father wants of all His children from him. Unless you deliberately choose to not follow Him, He considers you to be one of His own.

I trust you will come to Him and faithfully follow in His footsteps!

Passages to Ponder

» Proverbs 3:9-12

» Matthew 10:16-20

» 1 Corinthians 11:1-3

» 1 Peter 2:21-23

»Hebrews 12:3-6

— Jim Langley has been writing for more than 30 years while working as a life and health insurance agent in Santa Barbara. In recent years, his passion for him has turned to writing about his personal relationship with God, and his goal for him is to encourage others to draw near to Him as well. As a longtime member of CBMC of Santa Barbara (Christian Business Men’s Connection), he started writing Fourth Quarter Strategies columns in 2014, and he now reaches an international audience through the CBMC International devotional Monday Manna. He can be contacted at [email protected] for more information. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to top button