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July 23, 2007

A Jubilant Man of God

DR. R.A. FORREST WAS a college president never to be forgotten, a leader with an unmistakable touch of God upon his life. I met Dr. Forrest in 1951. He invited my wife and I to join the faculty at Toccoa Falls, while completing a missions program to satisfy an appointment for ministry in South America.

Dr. Forrest had a global concern for reaching needy people with the gospel of Christ and a determination to prepare young people academically and spiritually to fulfill such a commitment. His daily life was a steppingstone over which others trod to find Christ.

An all-caring man of humble spirit, Dr. Forrest overlooked no one. He built a strong campus bond of relationships, whether it was with faculty, students, office personnel, maintenance
worker, or community folk. He possessed no selfish airs, and one only had to meet him once to recognize his spiritual worth. His heart and life were daily bathed in the love and grace of God, the glow on his countenance reflecting his identity with the God of heaven. Though plagued later in life with diabetes, poor eyesight, and a wife suffering from a deteriorating hip, Dr. Forrest remained a jubilant, valiant man of God who lay down his life for his friends.

Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. (John 15:13)

(By Dr. John W. McCarthy, Toccoa, Georgia, TFC Alumnus, TFC Administrator, Chaplain WRAF. Taken from the book: Leaves From the Tree God Planted © 2006 by Toccoa Falls College, p.44-45)