September 9th, 2017| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0


Another “graduation” occurred last week.

One of my teachers went to be with the Lord: Dr. Stanley D. Toussaint, Senior Professor Emeritus of Bible Exposition, who taught at Dallas Theological Seminary from 1960 (before I was born!) to 2012. He was 89.

Charming, sharp, full of parrot jokes (yup!), and an amazing knowledge of the Scriptures. I count it a privilege to have been one of his “small-fry” students, but the man has taught Dallas Seminary stalwarts such as Chuck Swindoll, David Jeremiah, Erwin Lutzer, and others.

Confessed Stan Toussaint:

I’ve had most of the faculty [at DTS] that are Dallas graduates in my classes. It’s been a wonderful privilege. I just can’t get over the honor that it has been my privilege to have, teaching with, and being with, these students.”

Ironically, the roles kinda shifted when I began filling the pulpit at Stonebriar Community Church in Frisco, TX, during summer for the last few years. That was his church (he was an elder there) and to see him and his wife, Maxine, in the fourth or fifth row on my left as I was preaching was a reassuring sight. I don’t know if he was just being nice, but he was always encouraging on those occasions, even the last time I saw him, four weeks ago!

[And since he has departed this life, it won’t be a breach of confidence to note that Stan was also one of my patients.]

Lots of tears at his memorial service yesterday afternoon. He was truly beloved at his church, by his Sunday School class, and his pastor, not to mention all of us at DTS.

Said Stan Toussaint, not too long ago:

I’d like to say there are two things that are necessary for ministry. Teach the Scriptures or preach the word, and love the people. They are two essential ingredients. Just stay in the Scriptures, … and then love the people alongside of that. And that’s a combination that can’t be beat. I think those two core principles are true for any ministry.”

Wise words from a man who was an institution!

And, he added:

I’ve been asked many times what turns my crank, what keeps me going, especially at my age …. I just love what I’m doing—I just LOVE what I’m doing. The Lord has blessed me with a measure of stamina and strength ….”

This from a guy who had suffered from post-polio syndrome for the past seven decades! He graduated from a crutch to a walker to a scooter in recent years, but nary a word of complaint. He just kept on going!

Thankfully, I don’t preach with my legs, I don’t teach with my legs. … I just thank God that he’s given me the strength to keep on ministering the way I have—I just love it!”

What struck me about Stan, though was his passion, his ambition. He always quoted this verse:

Therefore we also have as our ambition, whether at home or absent, to be pleasing to Him.
2 Corinthians 5:9

He often said:

That’s my goal. How do you define success? Please the Lord! Whatever it is, please the Lord!”

And he achieved his ambition. He succeeded!

Interestingly enough, the Greek word translated “ambition” occurs only in two other places in the New Testament, besides 2 Cor 5:9.

I aspired [“ambitioned”] to preach the gospel.
Romans 15:20

And …

Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands.
1 Thessalonians 4:11

Great ambitions!

Stan, you are missed, but we’ll see you … soon!

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