Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Jesus Shines Brightly

I apologize for getting slack on my blog posts. For the 58th time, I will try to do better.

In my last blog I posted some thoughts about how tragedy brings out the best in God's family. Of course, I was referring to the tragic deaths of Parker and Haley Hewitt. Let me follow up.

As you know the services for these two precious children were held at our church last Friday. What an emotional day it was. Yet in the midst of the indescribable grief Jesus shined through. (or is it "shone" through?) Either way you know what I'm talking about.

Jesus shined through with our staff and volunteers. We knew there would be overflow crowds. And we were right. The worship center, Pointe, and fellowship hall were filled to capacity. Pulling that event off required many, many volunteers and much coordination. I was very proud of our church staff and our entire church family. Those outside our church family saw the great ministry you provided. And many have told me personally how impressed they were at your servants' hearts. My special thanks goes to my assistant Debbie Darnell. Logistically, she was the driver that pulled this thing off.

And certainly Jesus shined through with the service itself. Only God could have given me the strength I needed to pull that off. I can't tell you how many people told me before the service they were praying for me. In our church-wide prayer time the night before, we spent the entire hour praying for God to shine through. The worship led by the CBC and REFUGE musicians was awesome. God's presence was powerful.

But one more thing--Jesus certainly shined through Craig and Crystal. I wish you could have seen them during the entire service. Yes, they cried. But more significantly, they worshipped. They sang every song with hands lifted to God. During the solo music, their lips formed every word as Mike and Doug sang.

Their road to recovery will be long. But because of God's grace, they will make it. And Jesus will continue to shine through. And my prayer is that the lessons our church family has learned through this tragedy will linger for many, many years to come.

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