Summary: Providence, victory, overcoming

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Romans 8: 28-39 (p 800) February 24, 2013


Some of our men are doing a Max Lucado Bible study called “Fearless”, it’s led by one of our elders David Kiser. I laugh sometimes at how God brings some things together…When we did our “Radical” study one of our elders, Doug Lucas had read the book by David Platt and was sharing it with our Mission’s team. I’d already read it some months before and had started to plan a series when Doug asked if I could present some of the principles to our church…I said, “I think I can do a little better than than…How about a year long challenge?”

So, after I read “Fearless” I earmarked this story for “the More than Conquerors”, Romans 8 message…”It’s about Max’s brother Dee…Max describes Dee as someone who made friends like a baker makes bread…He permitted no stranger to remain one for long…but in his mid-teen years Dee made one acquaintance he should have avoided –a bootlegger who sold alcohol to endanger drinkers. And for the next 4 decades it would enslave Dee Lucado…He would drink away his health, relationships, jobs, money…all but the last two years of his life…At the age of 54 Dee discovered a resource of will power he’d never had…He emptied his bottles, enjoyed a season of sobriety…stabilized his marriage, reached out to his children and exchanged the local liquor store for the local A.A…But the 4 decades of hard living and 3 packs of cigarettes a day turned his “heart” into ground meat…Here’s how Max describes it in the book “Fearless”.

On a January night during the week I began writing this book, he told Donna, his wife, that he couldn’t breathe well. He already had a doctor’s appointment for a related concern, so he decided to try to sleep. Little success. He awoke at 4:00 a.m. with chest pains severe enough to warrant a call to the emergency room. The rescue team loaded Dee on the gurney and told Donna to meet them at the hospital. My brother waved weakly and smiled bravely and told Donna not to worry, but by the time she and one of Dee’s sons reached the hospital, he was gone.

The Attending physician told them the news and invited them to step into the room where Dee’s body lay. Holding each other, they walked through the doors and saw his final message. His hand was resting on the top of his thigh with the two center fingers folded in and the thumb extended, the universal sign-language symbol for “I love you.”

I’ve tried to envision the final moments of my brother’s earthly life: racing down a Texas highway in an ambulance through an inky night, paramedics buzzing around him, his heart weakening within him. Struggling for each breath, at some point he realized only a few remained. But rather than panic, he quarried some courage.

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