Sometimes following Jesus is really tough in the emotional ups and downs of life. This has been one of those weeks. Work is challenging any time you lose a leader and haven't found the right replacement yet. But some other events have made this an emotional roller coaster.
Let me tell you about one of them. Yesterday we had about 50 guests on campus during our normal chapel time. They were family and friends of the Jimenez and De la Cruz families. Forty years ago, Pablo Jimenez and Juan De la Cruz were students at what was then the Mexican Baptist Bible Institute, now Baptist University of the Americas. On March 25, 1967, the Saturday between Good Friday and Easter, they left our campus early in the morning heading south for the two churches the men pastored in Cotulla and Carrizo Springs. The two families crowded 12 people into one car for the trip. But minutes later a drunk driver slammed into the full station wagon.
10 of the 12 passengers died, along with the driver of the other car. Two children survived, one from each family. Those two girls, now women, both shared in yesterday's service, along with other family and school leaders from that era. It was a moving and powerful service.
Then, right after, as everyone was walking from the chapel to the cafeteria for lunch, Dr. H.B. Ramsour, president of the school when the tragedy occurred, stumbled and fell in the parking lot. Dr. Ramsour is a spry 96 year old (I hope if I live to 96 I have his health and mental acumen!), but most people lose a fight with asphalt. He was taken to the hospital and had several stitches put in, but is recuperating fine now.
While emotionally draining, it is powerful to see men and women whose lives were changed by the message of Jesus, and who have lived and died in pursuit of God and his kingdom. They are heroes of the best kind.