In Her Own Words

From Susan Ellington,
Crown’s U.S. Field Director:Susan_Ellington.jpg

I’ve facilitated the God Provides™ study several times in my own church, and I’m amazed at how God uses it in such powerful ways. The most recent example ... we used it in the home group I attend. Before the study began, I invited a gentleman named Don Krupp to join our group. Don was hearing-impaired and had been looking for a DVD study that offered closed captioning. The first week he attended, Don expressed excitement about being able to fully experience the beauty of God’s Word. Not only could he see the Biblical stories visually, he could follow the dialog through the closed captioning.

In addition to being hearing-impaired, Don was blind in one eye. He had never been married and had no children. He lost his job a year ago and hadn’t been able to find steady work due to the struggling economy. From the world’s perspective, he had very little to celebrate. Yet Don was filled with the joy of the Holy Spirit. He inspired our group as he talked about his love for Jesus and his complete trust in Him.

During the fifth lesson, our small group watched Rich Man and Lazarus. We talked about whether we live our lives as if Heaven and Hell are real. We discussed what the world values vs. what God values. We shared what we would do differently if we knew when our lives would end. We were reminded that what we do in this life matters for eternity.

So many wonderful insights were shared during our discussion time that night! Ironically, Don was the only one in the group who said that knowing the time of his death wouldn’t change how he lived his life. He said he was content and trusted Jesus completely. In fact, Don said that even if God took away everything he had, he knew the Lord had something better for him.

Less than 24 hours later, Don met Jesus face to face. While doing some landscaping work for a friend, he fell out of a tree and died on the scene. There is no doubt that when he stood before the Lord, he heard, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

Don’s comments the night before were even more impactful after his unexpected home-going. Like Lazarus, he didn’t achieve earthly fame or fortune. Yet his kindness, gentle spirit, and love for God were a blessing to everyone who knew him. He obviously understood and experienced the “true riches” that Jesus talks about in Luke 16:11.

The following week, our group watched the final film, Lifted Up. We were moved by the salvation message and challenged to invite others to “just look” at Jesus so they can be redeemed from their
sin.

At Don’s memorial service the following day, his brother shared
an impassioned altar call. He told everyone that Don’s greatest desire was for his unsaved friends and family to know the Savior he loved so much. It was a beautiful parallel to the invitation in the Lifted Up film.

I hope you are spurred on by Don’s story, as I am. It reminds me what an incredible privilege it is to share God’s Word
using Crown’s resources. Whether it’s through God Provides or one of the other programs, I am humbled to be part of Christ’s life transforming work!

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