Cumberland Times-News

David Sandvick - Life Lessons on Faith

March 6, 2008

We do not need to fear what lies ahead

We recently traveled with another family to Disney World for a vacation out of which many memorable stories came. This is one of them.

The four children we traveled with all had varying experience with thrill rides, but wanted badly to try out some of Disney's best. Sadly, their father is kind of squeamish and maybe even slightly frightened of any ride that is not a slow train.

Being the good pastor that I am, I volunteered to take the kids on the thrill rides. While standing in line for the Tower of Terror, one of the kids, we'll call her "Arnie" to protect her identity, began what would be known that day as the "show of shows."

While just minutes from boarding our ride vehicle, "Arnie" squatted down on the floor with her legs crossed, and started crying. "Pastor David, I don't want to go. Don't make me go. I changed my mind." I calmly replied, "You're going."

As she started again with the crying, the ride attendant came to calm her down. He said, "Well, at least your dad is with you." And with what sounded like contempt amidst the tears, she replied, "He's not my dad, he's my pastor!" I just looked at the guy, nodded in agreement, and shrugged my shoulders and said, "Her dad was too scared. Not brave like her."

Sometimes the unknown in life is scary. What will happen with my job, the economy, my children, and all the rest? It can, in fact, become so scary that we just want to squat down and cry out, "Don't make me go." For Christians, we do not need to fear what lies ahead because wherever we go, our Lord is there already waiting for us. God will never leave us or take us anywhere without his presence.

As for the Tower of Terror, is it really necessary to say that "Arnie" loved it, wanted to do it again, and made fun of her father for being afraid to go on it?

David Sandvick is the pastor of First English Baptist Church in Frostburg.

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David Sandvick - Life Lessons on Faith
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  • Make right choice with church On a recent visit to Tennessee, I spoke with the wife of a Christian camp director and she related this story to me. Her husband bought her an ipod Shuffle (one of the really little ones) for a birthday present.

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  • Join with God in his church July is a month that many people head to the beach or to a park to enjoy a summer vacation. As I think about my own recent vacation, I am reminded of a practical joke I played on my wife.

    July 24, 2008

  • Seek God, his kingdom, rest will fall into place On a recent shopping outing I was asked an interesting question. As we checked out, the cashier at the department store asked, "Did you find everything okay?"

    July 17, 2008

  • Bible School puts back what is easily lost Have you ever noticed how many food products are "enriched" with vitamins and minerals? Actually, the term might be "re"-enriched because much of the nutritional value of foods such as bread is depleted when it is processed to give it longer shelf life. Vitamins and nutrients that are lost in this manufacturing processing are restored.

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  • Listen to God's still voice: 'You can do it' It was the same day that I rappelled off the tower that I climbed up its rock wall side. I had come to the conclusion that a near-50- year-old man need not prove himself anymore, when a voice in my head said, "Do it anyway!"

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  • You should be real sure about going to heaven I recently returned from east Tennessee after speaking for a week at a youth camp. While there, I tried to get to know the young people and participate in many of the activities with them. Tubing on the lake, swimming, rappelling, rock wall climbing, and riding go-carts all combined to make it a truly exhausting work week.

    June 19, 2008

  • God looking for children love him Sunday is Father's Day and the television is filled with advertisements for potential gifts that seem to follow two lines of thinking. One line of gifts I've particularly noticed are handyman type gifts.

    June 12, 2008

  • Christians also have a natural enemy - Satan My garden plantings are growing like weeds. Oh, wait a minute, that one was a weed. A closer inspection reveals that something is gnawing on my plants. The leaves are missing on some of the vegetation and I suspect a wabbit! I asked my wife if rabbits had any natural enemies. She said, "Elmer Fudd." She's no help at all.

    June 5, 2008

  • Ready soil of heart to hear word of God I was working in my garden the other day. Well, it's not really a garden as much as a patch. Actually, patch may be stretching it a bit also. Perhaps bed is the most accurate rendering. A twin size bed to be exact.

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