Monday, April 30, 2007
A Faithful Servant
Sunday afternoon Josh, his mom, and I were visiting after Kids' Village when Josh got a phone call. He disappeared into the other room to take it. When he came back out I could tell by the look on his face that something was wrong. "That was my dad calling to say that Tom Bailey just died."
What? What do you mean? He died? These were all thoughts racing through my mind as I tried to process what Josh was saying. I couldn't believe it was real. It came as such a shock. This was Tom Bailey. The man who led Josh to Christ in his living room almost eleven years ago. Just last Saturday we laughed with him in the foyer and talked of that steak dinner that we needed to enjoy together sometime soon. And now he was gone? I still had trouble believing it was true.
As I talked with a friend at lunch today about Tom's death, we both shared a sentiment of confusion toward God. I mean, why would He take Tom now, when he seemed to be so productive for the Kingdom? He was so devoted to God's work, leading Bible studies out of his home three nights a week. Pouring his heart into the countless men he discipled. He was such a loving husband and father (and grandfather!). And even served as a father figure to so many who were without their own earthly father.
I guess in times like these I'm not expected to understand or have all the answers. I'm thankful that I can come before you, God, a little confused and deeply saddened at the loss of a friend. I acknowledge, Lord, that you are still good even in the midst of this. You are still in control and you give us your peace "at all times and in every way." (2 Thess. 3:16)
It's interesting that I've been learning about peace this week in my Bible study. Beth Moore says that, "Peace comes in situations completely surrendered to the sovereign authority of Christ." Help me, Lord, to surrender my hurt and sense of loss over to your sovereign and perfect authority. Please keep us "in perfect peace as our mind is steadfast, trusting in you." (Isaiah 26:3) And thank you for allowing me to know you more deeply by knowing your faithful servant Tom Bailey.
Services will be held Thursday May 3rd at 1pm at Prestonwood.
The viewing will be Wednesday May 2nd at 7pm at Ridgeview Memorial.
Tom and Brenda faithfully served together at Ichthus Ministries since 1985. Please be praying for Brenda, Brian, Alicia, and their families.