Losing a Friend or Family Member

Yesterday my friend was breaking a horse. He was a very experienced horse trainer and many horse owners and rancher in this area of Idaho relied on him. He had a pregnant wife and four children. Well, the horse through him and he fell to the ground and suffered a broken neck.

What happened was that he was roping a calf. The calf ran behind the horse and bumped it’s hind legs. The horse did not buck, he jumped a few steps forward and threw the rider off his back face-first into the ground.

You would not expect that here in Idaho. We have plenty of rodeo cowboys around here, even the local college has a rodeo. There are kid rodeos, and of course, rodeos in every town in the state.

We see people get hurt all the time. We see broken legs, arms, hips, even necks, you name it. But we seldom see death. We especially do not see death with professional horse trainers. We all know that horses can be dangerous. We know that some horses are unpredictable. Few horses want to do a rider bodily harm.

But my friend is dead, the community is in mourning, the family is suffering horribly.

We try to reason why such tragedies happen. Why does one horse trainer or rodeo performer work all his life with animals but never suffers death. Some horse trainers here in Idaho are in the later years of life. Nobody knows. It is just accidental death. It is time for those of us still here to remember to help the family.

I thought this morning, “Why my young friend with a family? Why not this old man? I wish I could trade places with him. My children would take care of my wife. Better if he could stay here.”

But that could not be.

I also thought, “If Christ were here we could ask him to go over to the mortuary and resurrect him.”

I guess it is not the time for that but we all hope for that later, don’t we?

If my friend had died in a car accident, he would have made the nightly news last night and this morning’s paper. But such an event that leaves a pregnant women and her children without a father and husband is not newsworthy. At least the media in Twin Falls missed it all together. Nobody called it in, I guess.

But it is big news in Buhl, Idaho. The community has a dark shield overhead. We are in sorrow!

Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live:
John 11: 25 – King James Bible “Authorized Version”, Pure Cambridge Edition

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
John 14: 27 – King James Bible “Authorized Version”, Pure Cambridge Edition

And peace be to all of you who have suffered loss.

I thought yesterday about Korea, the young men who lost their lives. Some of these young men were fathers.

I remember one day when I was a forward observer in a heavy weapons infantry company when the telephone rang and the speaker told me that we had a new lieutenant in our heavy machine gun platoon.

I said, “I’ll be right over to meet him.”

As I started on my half-mile hike, the telephone rang again. I went back and was told that new officer had been killed and that he had a wife and children.

He was a brave man, walking out among the machine-gun placements in midday.

My counterpart, a Chinese mortar-man, dropped a shell near enough to him to kill him.

Sadly, I was doing the same thing to Chinese young men. I think of them and their families often. We live on a dangerous planet in a extremely dangerous universe. Horrible things happen all the time. We need to have faith in our future, that God will prevail, that man will overcome the universe and live eternally in a better place.

I pray for that and for all you who suffer in this world.

John

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