Monday, April 23, 2012


I have vivid memories of a Sunday morning 20 years ago. As Kaylene and I were getting ready for church, we had the television in our bedroom tuned to the ‘Old Time Gospel Hour,’ a weekly telecast of the worship services of the Thomas Road Church in Lynchburg, Virginia.   The preacher that particular morning was David Ring, which was a new name to me.  It turned out that he had been born with cerebral palsy.   I thought as I was shaving, “This will be interesting.”  It was much more than interesting; it was totally captivating as he shared his convicting message, “Don’t Ask Why; Ask What!”

Being born with cerebral palsy, Pastor Ring could not walk normally and he could not talk clearly.  His hand and arm motions were not coordinated.  He had facial ticks.  In his testimony, he told about his father abandoning him and his mother shortly after David was born.  Then, at age 15, his mother died, leaving him without a nuclear family.  He was alone, except for the Lord in his young life.  He often awoke in the night to cry out to God for answers and for mercy. After graduation from high school, he sensed God’s calling to the vocational preaching ministry.  People were not encouraging.  They told him, “You can’t even enunciate the name of ‘Jesus!’  During his college years he was told he would not be married or have a family because no one would want to go out with him.  

But David Ring did not ask, ‘Why?’  He asked ‘What!’  He did not ask why God allowed him to suffer so much trial in his young life.  Rather he asked what can God do with my unique experience and disabilities…. what can God do with my yielded life?  Longer story shorter…. Today David Ring is in demand as an international evangelist.  He is married to a beautiful Christian woman that he met in Bible College, and with whom he has reared 6 children.  If you ever hear him, you will never forget it.

That Sunday morning, after he preached, Pastor Ring sang ‘Victory in Jesus’…. a-cappella.  It was the most awful…. the most beautiful thing I have ever heard in my life.  Kaylene and I both just sat down and wept.  [And I don’t cry that often.] Our unexpected emotion was because of the truth of his message and the powerful application of it in his life.

Is it not amazing what God can do with our tragedies and trials?  When we stop asking ‘Why?’ and we start asking ‘What?’…. God can and will work his wonders in our lives!  Can you get excited about what your future holds knowing God can take your worst and bring about His best for you.

Pray with me…. Father, You have made us for Yourself.  Our dependence on You is the source of our ultimate strength to handle the worst that life deals us.  We pray You will deliver us from the self-absorption that causes us to constantly question why bad things happen.  Empower us by Your Spirit, when we experience trials and troubles, to ask what You can do through it all.  In the name of Jesus we pray, amen.

Pastor Ken

No comments:

Post a Comment