For the first 3 days after receiving the news that my parents were murdered, I didn't even get dressed. I agonized, cried, tried to keep up with phone calls, texts, and e-mails. I watched the news from Springfield, MO via the internet. Eventually I had to get dressed and hit the road for Missouri. The night before I left I couldn't sleep a wink. I kept thinking of how Mom & Dad were killed. How could someone do that to them? I kept thinking of Mom on the phone frantically trying to get the police there to protect Dad while Dad was doing his best to fend off the attacker to protect Mom. I knew they each would have been more concerned for the other than about themselves. I was mad at God. After all, look what His Word says:
Psalm 91:9-11 (The Message)
Yes, because God's your refuge,
the High God your very own home,
Evil can't get close to you,
harm can't get through the door.
He ordered his angel
to guard you wherever you go.
Mom had written Psalm 91 in her notebook and had it marked as being very important. I know she & Dad claimed God's promises & trusted Him to protect them. What happened? Harm had certainly come through the door! Mom & Dad had served God faithfully all their lives. Wherever He called, they went. To the very end, they were both striving to do His will for their lives. Even though they were both 79 years old, retirement from their walk with Christ was unthinkable. They remained active in God's work, hosting Bible studies, writing Christian material, developing Christian workshops, mentoring, praying and studying God's Word for hours everyday. Dad had even committed himself to walking his neighborhood for 6 weeks leading up to Easter knocking on doors and inviting his neighbors to church. I just didn't get it.
The next morning I received a text from my friend, Susan, who told me that she had been praying for me and my family. She had cried out for God to allow her to take my pain so I wouldn't have to carry it alone. As she prayed, God spoke to her. He told her that He had taken my parents souls before their physical bodies were dead. He assured her they had not been afraid! How amazing! What reassurance!
He even revealed to her their last words. He told her they uttered, "Lord, take me, I am Yours." He showed her that right up till then, Dad was praying and witnessing to his attacker. God is Sovereign and He certainly owes me no explanation yet He gave me one. He is true to His Word. I can trust Him!
Psalm 91:14-15 (The Message)
"If you'll hold on to me for dear life," says God,
"I'll get you out of any trouble.
I'll give you the best of care
if you'll only get to know and trust me.
Call me and I'll answer, be at your side in bad times;
I'll rescue you, then throw you a party."
Enjoy your party, Mom & Dad. You've earned it!