[Pertinent thoughts after the accident from a friend named Barry in a Fellowship Fayetteville Bible Study of Romans:]
While studying Romans, I can’t help but think of the radical change in the Apostle Paul’s life before . . . and after . . . he personally met Jesus. Before that experience, he hated Jesus and all Jesus followers.
Obviously, Paul’s entire thoughts about Jesus as the promised Messiah changed radically.
For instance, Paul uses the name of “Jesus” 38 times in Romans. He mentions “Christ” (Messiah) 68 times, and uses the combination of the two together (“Jesus” and “Christ”) approximately 34 verses. All this only in his letter to the church in Rome.
Just as it was for Paul, there are times in each one of our lives where God presents us with an opportunity to consider the current direction of our own life and what is truly important to us. For me this happened a little more than 5 years ago, following an auto accident where I was T-boned causing my vehicle to rollover 1-1/2 times, ending upside down. My head banged against the window, and I was unconscious for quite some time. Two people who attempted to communicate with me during that time, thought that I was likely no longer alive. However, I finally revived, and a trip to the ER showed that I had no broken bones, and no internal injuries. The only thing I had was a few cuts, and a lot of bruises.
This incident caused me to spend much time contemplating why my life was spared. Although my quest for meaning in my life had begun prior to this time, this event increased my desire exponentially to find these answers. As a direct result of this, I began attending Fellowship Fayetteville, then began attending Gary’s study of the book of Matthew when it began that fall.
I bring this up because one of the men in our group had a similar (but even more dramatic) experience the day after Christmas. Fortunately, God spared Dwayne Bell and his wife from any serious injuries.
Dwayne Bell has his own website, and you can read about the incident at the following link.
I mentioned to Dwayne some of the questions that I asked myself after my accident:
Does God have something to say to through this incident?
Is God taking away something in order to replace it with something else?
Does God have a new direction and a new role for my life from this point?
Does God want me to reevaluate my priorities?
Here are some of comments that Dwayne has made in regards to this incident in a subsequent email.
When anything happens like this, you become very spiritually sensitive, especially if you have a high view of God and how intimate and involved He is in our lives . . .
I’ve experienced more grace, or been more aware of it, than at any time in my life. And I have more reason to believe and more conviction that “His plans for me are better than my plans for me.” So, I’ve put my main emphasis on getting to hear Him better by walking more closely (solitude, silence, the Word, and prayer) alone, and in community with the family of faith.
This signals something . . . and in the coming days I’m sure He’ll make it known, (if I want to know, and will listen). Listening with brothers is a key part of that, so feel free to speak into my life anyway you feel led.
In Psalms 119:34-37 David says,
Give me understanding so that I might observe your law, and keep it with all my heart.
Guide me in the path of your commands, for I delight to walk in it.
Give me a desire for your rules, rather than for wealth gained unjustly.
Turn my eyes away from what is worthless! Revive me with your word!
May our Lord make known to each of us the path that he has for our lives, and may we follow Him closely and obediently all the days of our lives.