Sunday morning, 12/12/2010 : During Family-School, Pastor F. has a sweet little girl sit on the top step of the altar and help him list the ten plagues, in order. When the pastor asks her how she knows all of the plagues so well, the young girl gives her signature sweet smile and says simply, "My dad taught me."
Later in the service, Pastor C. preaches a powerful sermon about prayer and fasting. He uses the example of Daniel's fast (Dan. 10) and how there comes a time in our lives where we just need to get a hold of God through fasting and prayer.
Tuesday morning, 12/14/2010, 7:10 am: The dad who taught his little girl the 10 plagues (in order) stops by the side of a snowy highway to see if he may assist someone who has slid off the road. When told the tow-truck was on its way, he makes his way back to his car. Suddenly, an on-coming car loses control on the icy road and this father of the sweet little girl is struck, thrown, and lies unconscious in the snow.
7:30 am: The church members receive an e-mail from Pastor C. informing us of this tragic accident. He also informs us of Pastor F's brother's sudden passing during the night. We are requested to fast and pray.
All through the day we fast and we pray. We pray for comfort for our pastor. We weep for our brother Ken in the hospital fighting for his life. We beg God to give wisdom to the doctors who are desperately trying to save him. We pray for comfort for his wife and 8 children - one being that sweet little girl on the top steps of the altar. Most of all, we ask that God be glorified.
A popular local radio personality happened to be one of the first on the accident scene. When Ken's wife arrived, he heard her fervent, earnest prayer; not that her husband would be spared, but that God's will would done. Beginning with the words of this radio host, the story of Ken's Bible lying next to him, the words of his wife's prayer, the blood-stained gospel tracts in his pocket, of Ken's life-long service to God and to others spreads throughout the city, the country, the world in a matter of hours.
God is already getting the glory.
Wednesday, 12/15/2010, 7:20 am: Surrounded by his wife, sons, and many family and friends, Ken's heart pumps its final beat. It has been 24 hours since he got out of his car to help a stranger...since he last looked on this world. In that 24-hours, people all over the world have heard or have read about his wife's prayer of faith. In that 24-hours, people have heard about how a Christian man lived giving of himself for others. They heard how he died giving of himself for others. Ken told many people about the love of Christ throughout his life. Yet, while he was lying in the ICU, he reached more people than he ever dreamed.
Some would say that our fasting and praying were done in vain. Not so. Our Lord heard our prayers. He answered them according to His plan. His Name continues to be glorified and lifted up as the news media tells the story of Ken & his family's faith in Jesus again and again. Ken lived so that Christ would be glorified and Ken died so that Christ would be glorified.
So many are grieving Ken's death - his church family, his co-workers, his wife and children. Ken's little girl grieves. She is young, but she will always remember her dad. She will remember him telling others of Christ while he lived. She will hear stories of how so many heard of Christ in his death.
Ken's daughter will grow up telling others of Christ with compassion and boldness. Someone may one day ask her, "How do you know to do this?" And she will smile and answer simply, "My dad taught me."