Testimony to a Faithful God
Floods of sorrow pour upon me like thunder… yet day by day the Lord pours out His steadfast love upon me, and through the night I sing His songs and pray to God who gives me life. Psalm 42:7-8 (LIV)
“Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father,
There is no shadow of turning with Thee;
Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
As Thou has been Thou forever will be.”*
“Do you hear that?” The nurse in the trauma center couldn’t believe her ears. The hallway was vibrating with the sound of a deep masculine voice that sang, “Great is Thy Faithfulness”.
Amazed, she hurried down the hall to the bedside of a man who—she was sure—would not make it much longer, if even through the night.
“Floods of sorrow had poured upon him” and now he lay—body crushed and broken—choosing to use what was still functioning—his voice—to praise the God he loved and for whom he had lived over the course of 50 years.
He wasn’t supposed to be there. Not in a hospital trauma ward. He was supposed to be officiating at a wedding and enjoying cake and punch at the reception. He and his wife had traveled at least 8 hours to get there. Having formerly been on staff with the father of the groom and close as family friends, the trip was joy filled and uneventful until the unthinkable happened.
The new, right passenger tire blew out and the car careened across southbound I-5 onto the meridian. It slid rapidly, creating a berm that flipped the car. When the dust settled he was on the ground where the car landed, shattering his hip. In addition, the hot exhaust pipe seared part of his ear and he was pinned helpless under the weight of the car.
In the meantime his wife of 34 years, slumped securely in her seatbelt with a broken neck.
The man’s seatbelt had released, or was never buckled. He had not grown up with that safeguard and felt it was uncomfortable.
When the first responders reached the scene, they carefully removed the couple from the wreckage and transported them to the closest medical facility. Shortly after, Patricia Irene Lewis, (Phil’s wife) went in God’s grace “Home” to be with the Lord she had loved and served all of her life. It was Phil who was now choosing to sing praises in the darkest night of his life.
While he lay there, I am sure the Angels bent down to listen to him singing and to watch while—day by day—the Lord poured our His steadfast love over this man, His child.
God tells us in His Word that He sings over us and rests in His love for us (Zephaniah 3:17)..
That is how, if we choose to believe it, we too can…
“…through the night sing His songs and pray to God who gives me life.”
Be encouraged. “God is not finished with you yet. Don’t put a period, where God puts a comma.”
Patricia Lewis went “Home” to glory in 1991. Phil Lewis, after a long recuperation and recovery period, returned to pastoring the little, rural church in Northern California. Four years later, his dynamic personality and amazing stamina returned and became an asset that would lead him to follow the Lord as a Missionary Bible Teacher in Ethiopia—the land where his parents had followed the call as pioneer missionaries.
Before he left on his first assignment , a mutual friend introduced him to Darla Lewis, a widowed Pastor’s wife from a nearby town.
God would put their lives together and bless them both with a new song that neither of them expected could ever happen again. They spent ten years together in Africa, then his weakening health forced their return to America. Through the graciousness of Pastor Bob Kopeny, Phil was brought on staff as Assistant Pastor in the area of Missions. During the next seven years he was able to nurture, encourage and develop missionaries and help them establish or continue with previous mission sites around the world.
In 2015, Phil’s weakened body slipped silently into the arms of his Father in Heaven who lovingly took him “Home”.
How I miss him, but I am not alone. Jesus remains with me, just as He was faithful to be with Phil. My husband’s faithfulness to God taught me that I too can “sing songs in the night when floods of sorrow pour upon me like thunder”.
God’s love is steadfast and, day by day, my Father and God is pouring His love over me. He gives me Life.
Now that is something to sing about!
by Darla Lewis
* Excerpt from Great is Thy Faithfulness
1923 Hope Publishing Co.