In a week when long-time friend Ray Goudie died, and went to be with the Jesus who he’d loved and served his whole life, a much newer friend, Emma, went to heaven and met with Jesus (see the other blog post). It’s hard to understand the extreme opposites of their experiences: even more for Nancy, Ray’s amazing wife. While we don’t understand, we can only trust God. While it was amazing to rejoice with Emma yesterday, it was – and this is true – equally amazing to be with Nancy, at their home, on Tuesday. God gave her such peace: their home was filled with the presence of God. Ray’s legacy is immense, through his and Nancy’s ministry in British Youth for Christ, with the band Heartbeat, and for the last 25-30 years, through New Generation Music (NGM).
About 6 weeks ago, I felt I should fly over to England, and pray for Ray. He’d been given a few days – then – to live, by the doctors. As soon as Nancy let me know that he’d died, on Monday evening, I knew that I should go and pray for him: not because I knew that he’d come back to life, just that I knew that I had to try every door, take every opportunity, and be obedient to what God had said. Nancy felt the same, so Tuesday, I was in the undertaker’s praying for my friend… it was so much harder praying for someone I know, and even though there have been two in the past who God has brought back to life, I didn’t know them….
I’d love to report that Ray opened opened his eyes, spoke to me, and got up. He didn’t. But I’m so glad that I went, I’d always have regretted not going, and wondered. Please, please – pray for Nancy, Daniel, and Aiden: this is such a tough time for them. Ray was an incredible man, a wonderful husband, a fantastic dad. There will be a Thanksgiving Service for his life on September 17, at 2pm, at Edge Church, 1160 Park Avenue, Aztec West, Bristol BS32 4TF. It’ll be a day of great celebration for all that God did through the life of this humble, loving, obedient man.
It’s been a privilege to know you, mate… see you in the morning.