Posted by: The Simple Guy | February 4, 2010

A day to remember

Five years ago today was one of the worst days in my life.  It started normally enough, I drove to work listening to Alistair Begg on the radio.  He was preaching from the life of Joseph.  The message was about Joseph’s statement to his brothers, “You meant this for evil, but God meant it for good.”

He spoke of how Joseph didn’t say that God is turning this for good, but that God intended it for good.  God planned it all along.  This thought went through my mind most of the day as I pondered God’s sovereignty.

That evening when I got home, I got a call from Mom.  Judging by the sound of her voice, I knew something absolutely awful had happened.  I gathered it was about Dad.  First of all, I thought he must be in the hospital or even dead.  I have never heard Mom like this before.

Then I found out it was even worse.  Dad is the principal of a small Christian school.  That day at school, the police had come in and arrested Dad, based on allegations from a former student.   My head spun, my heart stopped.  The first cohesive thought to go through my mind was “You meant this for evil, but God meant it for good”  That thought as well as the overwhelming gratitude that Dad spent so much time with me growing up (so I knew without a shadow of a doubt that the allegations were false) is all that got me through the night.

Let me pause here for a minute.  Men, integrity at home counts.  I grew up knowing my Dad well.  We worked together, played together, went to school together.   I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that the allegations were absolutely bogus because I knew Dad.  That was absolutely priceless.  Would your children have the same peace of mind?  Or are there things they know that would make them doubt?

Well, the next day us boys got together and headed down to the jail to try to bail Dad out.  Problem was, none of us had ever been in trouble.  We didn’t know where to start!  Folks, we weren’t going to get Dad out, we didn’t know how.  Then God sent someone to bail Dad out.  Again, I knew God had it under control.  It was as if He was saying, “Ok boys, you can try to deal with this on your own, or you can let me handle it”

So began a long ordeal that ended the following November in a court room with a 1 week trial.  I saw God uphold Mom and Dad when there was nothing I could do to help.  I can’t discribe what it was like to sit there and watch a perfect stranger ask my Mom questions no lady should have to answer in public.  I watched as Dad sat across the room powerless to make them stop.  I watched as Dad took the stand and shared Christ with a courtroom full of people.  I watched as the jury went out, and then we waited.  Here again, let me say, God upheld us.  Friends, at this point I knew that Dad and Mom were in His hands.  I knew that the verdict was in His hands.  I knew that if the verdict came back “guilty” that it would be because God had a plan for Dad in prison, and that God would protect him.  I also knew that God is not so small that He would have to take care of Dad’s body in order to take care of him.  Hebrews 11 came to mind.  Think of those who have, and do, suffer for His sake.  Again let me say, I knew Dad was innocent, so this is not God’s discipline, it is God’s plan.

Folks, there are things we know in our heads.  But I am talking about God coming alongside of me and making me know in my heart.  This was the peace of God that guards our hearts.  You may have heard about it.  I have experienced it.

Friday evening after 6pm the jury came back with a “not guilty” verdict.  But then there were the lawyer bills.  Over $100,000.00.  None of us could even touch that amount.  Dad and Mom met with the lawyers to discuss the bill, and Dad said an amazing thing.  He said, “Fellas, God has provided since the beginning of this thing.  I didn’t do anything wrong here.  That means it isn’t my bill, it’s His.  So charge me whatever interest you want, and give me a year to pay it off.  Let’s watch God pay His bill.  If He doesn’t, then we can go ahead and sell my house or whatever we have to do to pay it off.”  Then something even more amazing happened.  The lawyers agreed to this bargain.

Folks, God paid the bill off in full on the day it was due, exactly 1 year later.  Is He amazing or what?  Does He get the glory?

As I said, a day to remember.

He is faithful.

Here is the song that meant the most to me at the time:

Craig

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Responses

  1. This is such encouragement!

  2. God is faithful. Even in the midst of the storm.

  3. A wonderful, though distressing, story.

  4. What consolation these testimonies bring to my own heart!

  5. What a horrible thing to go through, yet… so much encouragement. God is Sovereign. Faithful in every detail.

    And, Craig, what a wonderful testimony to your dad, that there was never a shadow of a doubt in your mind as to his character. I’m thankful to say the same about mine.

    In fact, during my college years I worked summers in the same pulp and paper mill where he worked. Person after person made sure to tell me how much they liked and admired him – especially the women, who appreciated being treated respectfully.

    Thanks for sharing the story,

    Julie

  6. Julie,
    I have been thinking about how God’s sovereignty and faithfulness were at work the whole time, yet he used Dad’s faithfulness as well. We like to have the sovereignty vs. free will debate in philosophical terms, yet when we step back and look at our lives, we can see both at work. Is it that we try to put these things in test tubes and write them down as neat clean scientific laws rather than understand them in 3-D?

    I don’t know, just one of the thoughts bouncing around in my head that I’m not smart enough to think, yet it’s there.

    Your Dad and mine, men of whom the world is not worthy. Is it worthy of us?

    Craig

  7. Just saw this quote recently and am making it my prayer.

    If God should stretch out the golden scepter and say to him, “Ask, and it shall be given you – up to half the kingdom,” he would say, “Lord, give me a pure heart! Let my heart have this inscription, Holiness to the Lord. Let my heart be your temple for You to dwell in. Lord, what would I do in heaven with this unholy heart? What converse could I have with You?” A gracious soul is so in love with purity that he prizes a pure heart above all blessings.

    – Thomas Watson

    I am cut to the quick by that thought, “Lord, what would I do in heaven with this unholy heart?”

    Julie

  8. Julie,
    Thanks for the quote.
    Truly, what would I do in heaven with this unholy heart?
    Craig

  9. Craig,

    This story is amazing! God truely is great, and deserves all our praise, each and every day.

    Thank you so much for sharing this. I’ve been ill and unable to work for 4 weeks now, and, while I face no legal difficulties, this reminder that God is in control of everything is something I needed to hear.

    ~Squirrel


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