I remember being tremendously convicted listening to many of the sermons, but in a way that was not hopeless. Instead, in a way that sent — and still sends — my heart soaring to my Savior, Jesus Christ.
That is how our dear friend and colleague, Matthew Soderholm, described the impact of the preaching of John Piper on his life.
We were blessed to have Matthew join the staff of Desiring God in the summer of 2011. A man of meekness and remarkable gifting, Matthew served as Director of Administration for nearly three years, overseeing all of the support systems of the ministry.
During this season, God blessed Matthew’s labors in remarkable ways. He was a tremendous gift to us. When the news of cancer came in August of 2013, we were deeply saddened, and yet deeply honored to walk that path of pain and tears with him and his family (his wife and five children) for eight months. And while we rejoice to know that Matthew is now with his Savior, we still miss him greatly.
The video above is footage taken from an interview recorded in the fall of 2012. In it, our camera-shy colleague attempts to thank Pastor John for the influence he had on his life. The result is both humorous and heartwarming. It is the way we remember Matthew — gracious, courageous, humble, kind. Below are two God-glorifying illustrations, drawn by his mother, that provided great encouragement to us during this trial.
We thank God for the life of Matthew Soderholm. We are thankful that, by God’s grace, he believed the gospel and that Jesus was his great treasure and joy. In his own words, “Even at times when my heart feels far from him, he grants grace abundantly, and I receive it as an undeserving child in wonder at the thought that he loves me.”
May the Lord hurry the day when all things will be made new, when we can stand, with Matthew, before the throne worshiping our Savior, who truly is “the Resurrection and the Life.”
— Scott Anderson, President & CEO
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written,
“For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.