In the summer of 1976, thirty-five female Campus Crusade staff leaders – including my wife, Vonette – gathered in Colorado for a retreat. That night, they were trapped in the Big Thompson Canyon flood.
About 1:30 in the morning I was awakened and informed. I did not know if Vonette was safe or dead. But I had incredible peace because I knew that God is sovereign and ever-present. Soon I sadly learned that seven of our staff women perished. I also learned that Vonette and twenty-seven others had escaped the raging water.
In the weeks that followed, we mourned. But we also decided to make their last moments on earth a tribute to our sovereign God. We placed full-page ads in newspapers across the country featuring pictures of the women who died. The headline read, "These seven women lost their lives in the Colorado flood, but they are alive and they have a message for you." The advertisement gave readers an opportunity to receive Christ.
The response was phenomenal. Thousands wrote to say that they had received Christ as a result. A foreign ambassador told us that his life was changed by the ad, and later helped open the door for ministry in his country, which had previously been closed.
When tragedy strikes, take comfort in the fact that no difficulty will ever come into your life without God's permission. Knowing this truth does not make adversity pleasant, but it gives us hope that the result will be worth whatever pain we endure.
Your View of God Really Matters ...
Are you experiencing adversity? Today, claim the truth of Romans 8:28. It doesn't make the pain go away, but it is reassuring to know that God has a purpose for our pain.
Learn more about God’s character at Discover God, by Bright Media Foundation, an affiliate of Cru.
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