This Is What The Gospel is Good For

Bill is an average guy. Well, an average father of two who owns three businesses, one of which is struggling and takes him out of the state 4 or so days a week.

Last week, that trip also took him 17 feet in the air to do some maintenance work for the shop when he reached out to steady himself on a piece of equipment. Unfortunately it had been mis-wired and the equipment frame was 'hot', as in electrified, just waiting for Bill to come along and complete the circuit. With his own body.

As the high voltage went through him, unable to breathe or let go, he prayed that God would give him the strength to pull his hand off the machine. Somehow he did it, but in the process fell the 17 feet into a nailer machine. Fortunately for Bill, a horse had trampled on his right leg a few years ago, so when it hit the machine the titanium rod kept his leg from breaking. He received only a pretty nasty, deep cut in his leg, but he was alive.

Like I said, a regular guy.

But this is not about Bill, really. You see Bill and his wife, family and businesses to run, have taken care of LJ for the past few years. LJ is a member of our church.

He's a 60 year old single guy living in a basement efficiency apartment, smaller than my living room. He works across the street at Damon's making sure the 4 big screens are showing the right games for the folks who come to watch, eat and drink. He's got congestive heart failure and diabetes. He's on blood thinners, so he can't shave. He's always got pain in his back and finds it hard to sleep, so he's always tired. He has little family and who he does have is hundreds of miles away in Kentucky. He's just trying to make it to retirement, so he won't have to walk across the street to work any more.

Bill makes sure he gets to church. He (or his wife) makes sure LJ gets his groceries and doesn't have to carry them home. He makes sure he's got money if he needs it. He, and others, get LJ to his doctors appointments. Tonight, I was fortunate to be the one to make sure he got to church and to make sure he got some groceries. He promissed he would pay me back after payday, but as far as I'm concerned I've already been paid.

LJ is one of the bright spots of the church. He smiles often and it warms the room when he does. He knows that Jesus loves him and he loves Jesus too. My kids, and others, just love LJ and he loves them. They run to him and give him a big hug. For years, LJ played a very convincing Santa at the church Christmas party.

Apart from the church, LJ would be a lonely man in a tiny, crowded basement apartment. He'd have no one and nearly nothing and no one would care. He'd walk to the store and back with his groceries. And few, if any, would be warmed by that smile.

That's what the gospel is good for.

3 Comments

Even though I know both Bill and LJ, I didnt know the extent of their situation. It sure is nice to know that God is good and takes care of us,especially as we take care of others. Very encouraging.

Sounds like Bill. :) I miss both Bill and LJ a lot. You forgot to mention that while playing golf Bill got hit in the head with a golf ball. For weeks you could see the dimples from the ball and some said you could read the make of the ball too! So his head was hardened from the golf ball which prevented him from getting a concussion and the titanium rod prevented a broken leg. :)

A great example of how the gospel effects our lives.

Wow, tuff times sure are tuff! Let Bill and LJ know that I love them and are praying for them (Cathy too)! Please.



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  • Wow, tuff times sure are tuff! Let Bill and LJ know that I love them and are praying for them (Cathy too)! Please....

  • Sounds like Bill. :) I miss both Bill and LJ a lot. You forgot to mention that while playing golf Bill got hit in the head with a golf ball. For weeks you could see the dimples from the ball and some said you could re...

  • Even though I know both Bill and LJ, I didnt know the extent of their situation. It sure is nice to know that God is good and takes care of us,especially as we take care of others. Very encouraging....

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