Monthly Archives: November 2008

Letting Go and Saying Good-bye

Dad Lowenberg and Sandi

Dad Lowenberg and Sandi

As many of you know my wife Sandi’s father, Paul Lowenberg, passed away. Last week we had a graveside service in Wichita, Kansas, followed by a Memorial Service at Central Assembly here in Springfield. He would have been 95 next month and was ready to go to his heavenly home. Yet as happy as we are for him, the sting not having him in our lives remains. Thanks to all of you who have prayed for us and been such a great support during this time.

His memorial service reminded me again of how eagerly and energetically Dad Lowenberg lived for Christ and His Church. Even into his 80’s he was still traveling the world and preaching. Like me he was born in Canada but unlike me he pioneered some 20 churches in Canada before coming to the States. Then Douglas McArthur called for American missionaries to go to post WWII Japan. Few responded, but Dad Lowe did, raising money to plant a church there. He spent six months in Japan while Sandi was still just a baby. When it came time to board a plane to come back he felt clearly impressed by the Holy Spirit to not get on the plane. He waited and endured all the complications of booking a later flight. The plane he refused to board crashed. Dad Lowenberg later found out that at the very same time his godly father, still living on the Canadian prairies, felt exceptionally burdened to pray and intercede for his son’s safety. I love stories like that! Dad Lowenberg later named his son, Doug, after Douglas McArthur.

Dad Lowenberg went on to be known as a ‘Prince of Preachers’ in the American Assemblies of God and around the world. He was an orator with anointing, a craftsman with the English language. He loved God’s Word passionately — even when he was just sitting around the house and not preaching. That is partly why I knew he was the real thing. I am also extremely grateful that he said ‘yes’ when I called him long distance back in 1983 and asked for the hand of his one and only daughter in marriage! Very nice man.

You can’t put legacies into coffins. Neither can you confine a person’s influence to a grave. We committed his body to the ground but we treasure the gift of one man’s extraordinary legacy and the influence that lives on in us.

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‘Day After’ Reflections

The Obama Family
The Obama Family

Admittedly the guy I voted for yesterday did not get in. Actually, several that I voted for did not get in. Sleeping fitfully, I got up in the middle of the night and prayed a while. Here are a few things that I have been thinking about on this ‘day after.’

 1. Our church-wide prayer meeting last Sunday night was very powerful, one of the most fervent corporate prayer meetings we have had. We prayed not for McCain or Obama to be elected, but for God’s will to be done. In praying together we did not waste our time. Nor will we stop praying. In all things we trust the Lord who  sovereignly raises leaders up and takes them down.
2. Serious followers of Jesus have, for a long time, sought to not only eradicate slavery but racial prejudice of any kind. Even a generation ago an African American probably would not have had any chance to be elected President. We have come a long way. At this historic moment we have cause to be grateful to the One around whose heavenly throne will be people from every tongue and tribe.
3. No matter who we voted for, Obama is now our President-elect. We will pray for him and not disobey the Lord’s instructions to ‘give honor to whom honor is due.’ Given the immediately pressing issues of national security and the economy he will need the wisdom of God. His campaign also caught the imagination of a whole generation of young, first-time voters whose idealism is quite high right now. It will be difficult for our new President to live up to those expectations.
4. The Supreme Court appointments over the next few years could set back ‘sanctity of life’ progress several decades, so we also need the Lord to guide President -elect Obama supernaturally and send America a true spiritual awakening that transcends politics and government.
5. Jesus was NOT up for election this year. He is still on His throne, King of all the kings and Lord of all the lords. I have high confidence that he will continue keeping his promise of 2000 years ago — “I will build my church.” Nothing is more important to Him than that, so I am committing myself afresh to partnering with Him.

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