Articles by Don:
Death of Self
A Relationship With Papa
This is a story of Don’s life from August
I was a normal American boy and young man
up until that time. I didn’t care much about God or His Son and thought
only of myself. Up until that time, life was just what I had to do to enjoy
myself. There was a lot of “booze” which worked into other drugs.
I joined the Air Force in August, 1966 to
keep from being drafted into the Army. I spent 3 years stationed in England
as a Security Police Officer, canine patrol. I was reassigned to the United
States, Minot Air Force Base, North Dakota. All four years of my off time I spent “partying” with the guys. Then on August 4, 1970, 10 days before
I was supposed to get out of the service, I was out with some friends. We
started drinking before noon and had a car accident the next morning around
1:00 or 2:00 A.M.
The car went off the road and when we
tried to get back on the road, the front axle snapped and from what I’ve
been told, the car rolled 3 times and went end over end 3 times and ended
up against a tree. That was the start of my road back to God.
All I know is what I hear which is that I was shipped to Fitzsimons Hospital in Denver, CO. My folks were
called and told about the accident, where I was, but were told not to hurry
out because I probably wouldn’t be alive when they got there, but my God
had other plans for me.
I spent 2 months unconscious, with a
refrigerator blanket on top of me as well as under me to keep my
temperature under control. They had me strapped in bed so I wouldn’t pull
my IV’s out and was fed through tubes.
This whole time the doctors kept telling
my Mom that I probably wouldn’t live, but if I did, I would be a vegetable.
In October I came out of it but knew very little of the accident or
anything else in my life. I couldn’t walk, I couldn’t talk very good. That
was the start of my recovery. From Fitzsimons I was shipped to the VA
Hospital in Omaha, NE so I would be closer to home. I spent almost 2 months
there before they let me go home in a wheelchair.
The next 3½ years were spent trying to
get better, learning to walk, talk and finally meeting the best woman in my
life. Every year I had to go back to the VA hospital for an exam to see if
I had gotten any better. At my yearly exam in 1974, the Air Force decided I was fit for world wide duty and gave me the option to come back in or they
would give me an honorable discharge.
Thank goodness I had a father that told
me I could never get any insurance for myself, so I would be best off to go
back into the Air Force. I went back in and was retrained into procurement,
where I spent another 3½ years at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland. I had
a Master Sergeant who worked to get me permanently discharged for medical
reasons. A doctor on base agreed and said he would do all he could to help
After they gave me my medical discharge,
I came back to my home town with my wife and two boys. That’s when God
really started working. I accepted Christ as my savior in 1980. Things
didn’t change much. In the meantime, I tried to do as much as I could
and did not think of or depend on God as I should.
From 1980 until 2000, I had had seven
operations. One operation for plastic surgery on my tracheotomy scar, three
operations for an abscess in my abdomen, one operation just to see where
all the drainage was coming from;,one operation removing my left kneecap,
and one back operation. On February 18, 2000, I had my left knee replaced
but it didn’t work out very well and 1½ years later I had to have it
replaced again because I was falling down too many times. Sometime during
those two years between knee replacements, Papa God really started working
on me, breaking me down to where I had to be totally dependent on Him.
He became my Papa, my Savior, and my
Guide. I still have a lot of problems, but He has given me a peace that
goes beyond anything I can tell you. It has become a relationship that
grows with every minute of my life.
There are a lot more things I could tell,
like taking a 34 year smoker and helping him quit in one night or the
things He has told me. These things should be enough for anyone to see my
God and the kind of relationship He wants with each and every person.
I hope this helps explain where I am at
with my Papa and as far as writing the story, I don’t think most would
believe it anyway, but if I can convince just one person to trust Christ as
savior then all I go through is worth it.
With Love in Christ
P.S. This has happened to me since I wrote this. On September 11th 2004 while
I sat here at this computer my
wife of 32 years had a grand maul seizure in another room and died. That
whole night I kept asking the Lord how much more I had to give, but God is
faithful and did answer me in His time to show me why and bring a peace
back in me. I still mourn my loss, but He has helped me greatly.
Note from Kay:
I "met" Don when he emailed me in 2005 saying he had a great testimony and
had written something about "Death to Self". That email arrived
shortly after God had let me know He was sending more people to write
things for the Clarion Call. I read his email and was overjoyed at
God's faithfulness. I hadn't replied to Don when my computer crashed
and took my email with it.
A couple of months later Don wrote again because he hadn't heard from me.