It was September the 8th 1983, I will never forget because it was our 16th wedding adversary. Janie, the four boys, and I had just flown out of the tribe the day before and were looking forward to a few days to relax with the boys before they flew back to school.
Bob Kennel’s voice came on the mission radio with these words. “Cowboy, I have some sad news, your house has burned to the ground and all is lost.” I must admit if you had hit me with a ball bat it would have had the same affect, my breathe was gone. The Devil meant it for harm, but God had some wonderful truths to teach me, He meant it for good.
Now like most I had danced around Romans 8:28, but not to the point where it had any affect on my life at that time even though I had been a missionary on the field several years. I do not want to make light of the hard time I had, but sometimes it takes the bad times for me to see the good that our God has already in place.
As the small mission plane circled the airstrip taking me back to see the damage I made up my mind there would be no tears from my eyes this day, I had it all in control. As I opened the plane door and stepped out it all broke loose, too much work had gone into that house and what little we had was smoking in the ashes gone forever. Like some of you that are facing the loss of many things I was over come with grief, how could this happen to me a missionary miles from my home?
God used you, His people, to rebuild my house and replenish what was needed. He used Bob Kennel and George Walker to plant a thriving church in Bisorio and He used Romans 8:28 to build a faith in me to keep me looking to Him 25 years later. My friends we need not fear the hard times, but we must fear the good times that can draw us away from God. May God bless each of you and keep you strong in the coming days.