Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Well Done, Pastor Steve

Early Saturday morning our beloved Pastor Steve was ushered into heaven. After battling colon cancer for two and a half years, he is at peace and his body is completely healed. It is bittersweet as we know his family will miss this goofy, lovable man so much, yet, we all hated to see him suffer.

Pastor Steve was unpretentious and completely humble. Our church needed this desperately. He taught us how to love one another, to avoid vain and foolish arguments. He had endless football stories that he used as analogies that were lost on me (I hate football), but I'm sure every guy in that room could relate. He loved God, his family, skiing and French fries.

The night he died was strange. We knew that it would be within 12-24 hours. I heard a bump and woke up with a start 12:00 a.m. I started praying, but felt something dark. I kept praying and asking God if there was something specific that He wanted me to pray. I finally gave up and asked the Holy Spirit to pray with words and groanings that I couldn't express. I had a vision of a dozen angels hovering in the room with Pastor Steve. There was something dark and menacing in there as I sensed there was a spiritual battle going on. I knew that the enemy was angry at this servant of God. Pastor Steve had done well. He hadn't forsaken his faith throughout his illness. He grew stronger in the Lord. He became a living, breathing testimony for us. Those angels where just hovering though as if to say, "Come on, come on, we can't wait to usher you into heaven!" They were so excited!

Finally, about 3:00 p.m. I had peace again. I was able to go back to sleep. Later that morning we found out that God took him home around 2:30 that morning. Oh my, the fact that He chose me to pray for this family during the night (as I'm sure many others were) humbled me and astounded me at the same time. I will be forever grateful to be able to pray for Pastor Steve and his family at that time.

"O Grave, where is your victory? O Death, where is your sting?"

You have not won! You have lost. Pastor Steve is dancing in the streets and singing (something he always wished he could do) with a heavenly choir. He loved music!

You did it, Pastor Steve. You finished well. We watched and learned from you. We will never be the same.

You just have heaven before we do.


Beth said...

"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away." Revelation 21:4

Rejoicing in Heavens gain but still sad for your loss. May God grant you, your Pastor's wife and your church comfort during this time of mourning.

Sarah said...

So sorry for the loss of Pastor Steve.

May God be your rock, as you all mourn your loss.

OurLilFullFam said...

"Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints." Psalm 116:15

That is the verse given to me by my precious oldest daughter the day my grandma passed away, about 2 hours before we ushered er into heaven. What happened to you - the praying and feeling - it will never leave you. It is a special little gift from the Lord.

I am sorry for your loss, but we both know he would never come back from there, oh what a day awaits us all who love the Lord!


Nadine said...

Prayers going out to you and your church family. A dear friend of ours went to be with the Lord last Sunday, we miss him, but know that he is rejoicing with the Lord in Heaven!


Stacie said...

I am sorry for your loss, and yet rejoice with you for your friend and Pastor no longer suffers. He is walking the streets of gold!

My grandma died on January 24th of this year. She had Alzheimer's, and had had several strokes. She was a wonderful woman of God. We were gathered around her bed singing hymns to her the evening the angels came and ushered her to heaven. It was the most awesome experience of my life, and I am so thankful for it.

How awesome that you were praying for Pastor Steve and his family in the hours before and after he died. That is a privilage indeed! Was he an elderly man?

Stacie, A Firefighter's Wife said...

He was in his early 50's.

MommaMindy said...

Beautiful post. I'm so encouraged you were sensitive to the Spirit and prayed. The Lord wakes many saints up to pray, they don't hear His voice, and go back to sleep.

I'm sorry for your loss. May the Lord bring another servant to minister to the needs of your fellowship.

Stacie said...

Wow, early 50's is not old at all!

Grandma Becky said...

My prayers for Pastor Steve's family and you as well. Thanks for heeding the Holy Spirit's urging to pray. There have been times I've done that when I think of someone in the middle of the night and I pray for them. Take care and stay strong. Remember God never leaves us nor forsakes us. His mercies are new every morning. Hugs, my friend!

Anonymous said...

As I read this post, I wasn't sure if I should smile or cry. Of course, I am glad that he is no longer in pain and that He is now safe in heaven with our Lord. Still, I am sad that he has left this earth. It's like a bittersweet blessing because as humans, we don't quite understand all the particulars regarding death and resurrection.

I pray that his wife will be comforted during this time. My mother has been a widow for a few years, and it's been a difficult struggle for her. I pray that she will not get too lonely. I pray that friends will come and visit her.

Amber said...

Aww, Stacie, I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm glad you are finding comfort in his peace, and hope his family can do the same.

I had a similar experience when my Grandma died. I was about 12, and sound asleep. We knew her time was coming soon, but didn't know when. I was woken up suddenly and I distinctly heard her voice...literally inches from my ear saying, "Amber, I love you. Remember to be your momma's sunshine. She will need it."

Now I don't have your (or my mom's) strength of faith - but I do believe in the hand of God touching us. There have been multiple times I have been compelled to be somewhere or do something that has adverted a crisis of some kind.

Lots of love,

Wanting What I Have said...

What a precious testimony...strong to the end...faithful all the way! I am sad for your loss, but rejoice with you that he is in heaven.

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