Mr. Forrest.

This is my devotional I did for the Goodpasture FCA on Sunday night  minus a few personal stories. I typed this up to send to Mr. Forrest’s family and thought, well shoot, I guess I’ll post it on my blog too. So here ya go… Enjoy.
I was working out last Monday when I got a text from Sheraya Dickerson
informing me that Mr. Forrest Goosetree had passed away. I understand
y’all have been praying for him and his family in Coach Baughs class.
Well let me tell you about the man you have been praying for. He was
an elder at my Church in Joelton for as long as I have been going
there. He was one of the greatest men I have ever known. And has one
of the best families that I have ever known as well. When I got the
text I immediately made up my mind that I would come home for his
funeral. I felt like I needed to pay my respects to such a respectable
man. This is why I am here in town and able to do this devotional with
y’all tonight.

I am going to tell you a little about Mr. Forrest and why I believe he
lived such a great life and why I respect him so much. Like I said
before, he was one of the nicest men I’ll ever have the privilege of
knowing. He would always come up to you and put his hand on your back
and ask you about your life and how you were doing. He had a way of
making you believe that he cared and that he was interested in your
life. A rare trait in today’s world.

I remember after mine and Danielle’s uncle died over Christmas break
and they carried the casket out the door after the funeral Mr. Forrest
was the first person who came up to my family. My Dad and him were
always real good friends. They would just sit and talk about guns and
stuff after church while Mom and I would be walking around making hand
gestures, cough noises, grunts trying to get my Dad’s attention
because we were ready to go. But Mr. Forrest and Dad would just be
talking away. Anybody who knows anything about my family knows that we
are not very touchy feely. We are mostly just loud and stuff and my
Dad and I rarely if ever hug. We mostly just stick to fist pounds and
hand shakes (We did hug after I won State in baseball my senior year
but that’s about the last time I can remember us hugging). Anyways, I
say that to say this. I remember after the funeral when we were all
standing outside emotions running high that Mr. Forrest walked right
over to my dad and gave him a big hug. I don’t know if I have ever
seen my Dad hug another man but there was Mr. Forrest. Hugging him
when he needed a hug the most. Mr. Forrest always had a way of
breaking barriers. I think it is because people knew he truly cared so
they were not afraid to let him in.

At his funeral on Friday I looked around the Church, which was filled
to the brim, and noticed people who I hadn’t seen in years. All these
people were here to pay tribute to their friend Mr. Forrest. So the
more and more I thought about his funeral, the auditorium full of
people and the words that James Hayes said about him the more I was
inspired to go out and create my own great legacy. To have my name
mean the same great things that have been associated with the name
Forrest Goosetree.

I felt inspired, and I know everyone else did as well. So that is what
I decided to talk to y’all about tonight. I want to have real talk and
encourage y’all to be always conscious of the fact that there are
people around you and that you are impacting their lives with how you
are choosing to live your life. Your life is now and you only have
one. So why not make the most of it? I left the burial grounds on
Friday and knew that Mr. Forrest had taken the one life God had given
him and made the most of it. This is what I want people to say about
my life as well.

For the most of you your high school friends will be around you for a
lot longer than you think. A lot of you will go to to the same college
and end up in the same places. I was the only one to go to Belmont out
of my graduating class and believe me. I was ready to kiss Goodpasture
goodbye and start a new journey. Little did I realize and what I want
y’all to realize is that there was no starting a new journey. My
journey had already started and I was just adding to it. Four colleges
later I am living with 3 of my high school class mates, work summers
at Goodpasture and most of my close friends are Goodpasture grads.

Your name is everything. I look back and remember people and there is
always a certain stigma that is attached to them. Whether it be good,
bad, justified, or not that is just how it is.

Proverbs 22:1 says that “A good name is more desirable than great
riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.”

This is the only verse I am going to bring up because I feel like it
sums it up best. Here is a list of advantages that I believe come from
living a good life, for God and for others.
1. Jesus will love it. Most important.
2. You will have the respect of others.
3.People will count on you which = opportunity.
4. You are a happier person.
5. Your friends will want to be your friend. (Real helpful on the
weekends because its always nice to get the invite)
6. Less regrets.
7. Later in life you will have the chance to inspire and change
other’s lives. Much like Mr. Forrest.
8. Fullfillment. Going to bed each night knowing you gave your all to
be all you can be.

Ways in order to establish a “good name.” To “live like Forrest” if you will:
1. Be selfless
2. Live for others
3. Be nice- life is too short to be mean.
4. Stay positive
5. Bite the bullet
6. Don’t try to be the “cool guy”– My Mom always said that the most
popular was not the most attractive or the most athletic but was the
one who had the ability to fit into all “groups”– Wise words. Thanks
Mom

The older I get the more the Bible makes sense. God knows the rewards
of a well lived life far outweigh the rewards of a life lived in
selfishness. Mr. Forrest understood this and I am beginning to more
and more each day. I encourage you to begin to consider who you are
today and who you want to be tomorrow. Then do not be afraid to make
the necessary changes. People will respect it.

So to wrap up: Your life is now. Not in college. Not after college. So
take advantage of it. Take pride in your name. Take pride in who you
are. Create a great legacy. You will not only find favor with God but
also everyone around you as well. There is no greater blessing. What
can beat that?

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Mr. Forrest.

  1. Wow Ross, those are some profound thoughts! I know that those Goodpasture FCA kids were blessed and challenged by this message- as am I. Mr. Forrest sounds like a very special person.

  2. Donna Moffitt

    Great job, Ross.:)

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