At our conference in Colorado this summer, the parents of Lauren McCain were interviewed. I heard it live. I’ve replayed it many times since then, both in my own head and on my computer. I was deeply affected by the juxtaposition of the McCain’s interview and the story of 23 Korean Christians who were kidnapped by terrorists while doing relief work in Afghanistan.
My friend Judy Nelson has written very eloquently about the McCain’s interview. Please read Judy’s thoughts.
In amazing evidence of God’s preparation, Lauren (their daughter who was murdered) was videotaped during an interview. A rough cut is available online.
Our children grew up in Nigeria in West Africa. During that time, I committed them to the Lord. I gave them to the Lord for his purposes. God gave Kay and I tremendous peace raising our children in another country. He is sovereign everywhere. We never feared weird diseases, political unrest, or violent crimes. Yes, as parents part of our job was to be smart and not do unnecessarily unsafe things. We experienced God’s protection and provision many times.
But sitting in Moby gym on the campus of Colorado State University praying in small groups for the hostages from Korea and hearing the McCain’s story, I realized I had never given our two beautiful granddaughters back to the Lord. I had never consciously and intentionally acknowledged his sovereignty over their lives.
And I realized that not only had I never done this, I didn’t want to. God and I had quite an argument there in Moby gym. Have you ever known that you’re going to give in on an argument because the other person is right, but you are not emotionally ready? Your head is ready to concede because you know the other person is right, but your heart is still arguing?
It came to a head when the praise band led us in singing songs of surrender. I remembered the dialog in C. S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia about meeting Aslan the lion. Susan asks, “Is he–quite safe? I shall feel rather nervous about meeting a lion.” Mr. Beaver responded, “Who said anything about being safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.
I thought this was just an inner battle as I stood there in Moby gym. But long-time friend Charlie came up and put his arms around me and just hung on. I thought he’d do the nice “Christian” thing about reassuring me with a brief hug, then moving back to his seat. But he hung on. Minutes. Lots of them.
And my heart began to come around. It’s still fighting some, even as I write this weeks later. But I am on the journey of consciously entrusting Abby and Lucy into God’s care. He is good, all the time. He is sovereign, even over the country on the other side of the world where their parents hear God calling them. He is involved in making his glory known among the nations, even through the difficulties of his precious children. And he is lovingly working out his merciful plan of redemption through his children — the big ones and the little ones. Even if some of those children are big ones like our son and daughter-in-love or little ones like our grandchildren Abby and Lucy.