By Missy Smith

FBC Minister of Children

Last spring just prior to Holy Week we discovered that my dad had a 100 percent blockage in the main artery to his heart. He also had two other arteries that were over 80 percent blocked. The doctors quickly consulted while he was in recovery from his heart cath and decided that within days it was imperative that he have open heart surgery. We went through all of the emotions that everyone goes through during a time like this. His case was high risk due to other health issues. We all prayed and shed tears knowing the risk of what lay ahead.

As a daughter that adores her father I can’t deny that I was consumed with my own fears of the unknown; fear that my dad would have to suffer, fear that something would go wrong, fear that my dad would never be the same or worst of all the fear that he might not make it.  I trusted the Lord but I also loved my dad and wanted to continue to have him here on earth with ME.

My dad remained a constant source of strength throughout the couple of days leading up to his surgery. He would send me scriptures and quotes from saints before us to cling to so that I would find comfort in the Lord for what lay ahead.  Even in pre-op he clung to a wooden cross as he prayed and reminded us that Christ was his source of strength and because of that he would be ok. Dad did amazingly well throughout his surgery and recovery. He was even able to go home within a week of surgery to celebrate Easter.

As I watched my dad press on with such grace, endurance and strength I could not help but think of Christ and the sacrifice he gave for us all. My dad went through the suffering of this very invasive surgery and recovery because he wanted more time….more time with his wife, more time with my siblings, more time with all seven of his grandkids and more time with all the people that he comes in contact with in his ministry. The whole reason for his suffering was for the relationships of those that he cared so deeply for.

As we approached Holy Week I then thought of Christ and even as I saw the sweat beads on my dad’s brow through his suffering….I was reminded that Christ suffered for his relationship with us. Picking up the cross, choosing to take on unimaginable pain, knowing that he didn’t have to do….yet, HE did! Christ went to the cross so that HE may be completely restored to a relationship with US. There are no words to describe my gratitude. As we have turned our hearts toward him this Lenten Season may we all be reminded to bow our heads and remember that we are sinners and HE IS OUR SAVIOR!

“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15:13

Remembering a Savior’s Love,


4 Responses

  1. “No Greater Love” (an old John Peterson Easter cantata that Pop and I did twice with the drama written to go with it.) Pretty much sums up your thoughts on sacrifice for others. Happy Easter!