Where Was God? | TBN

Where Was God?

Watch Where Was God?
May 19, 2019
27:29

It Is Written with John Bradshaw

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Where Was God?

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  • [Theme music]
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  • [Theme music]
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  • [Soft music with road noise]
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  • -John Bradshaw: Thanks for joining me on It Is Written.
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  • I'm John Bradshaw, and together we are heading somewhere.
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  • Before we get to our destination,
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  • let's go back in time a little bit...
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  • 2017 was a very active year for natural disasters.
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  • Remember the hurricanes?
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  • What a hurricane season.
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  • [Dramatic music]
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  • Now, those were the storms. There were others besides.
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  • Then came the fires.
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  • [Fire crackling]
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  • In California, fire season comes every year,
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  • and there's always a danger of fires, always.
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  • In northern California,
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  • a swarm of fires affected about six different counties.
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  • The worst fire of them all: the Tubbs Fire.
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  • And the Tubbs Fire began burning in the direction of Santa Rosa.
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  • That's where we're going now.
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  • In Santa Rosa alone,
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  • 43 people died as a result of the Tubbs Fire.
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  • That's 43 known deaths; there may be more.
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  • Nine thousand structures were destroyed,
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  • 5.500 of them in Santa Rosa.
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  • Three thousand homes were destroyed in Santa Rosa.
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  • Five percent of Santa Rosa's houses were destroyed.
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  • The destruction was immense.
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  • We're on our way to Santa Rosa
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  • to talk to some survivors of the Tubbs Fire;
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  • some victims of the Tubbs Fire, that is,
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  • people who lost everything;
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  • and people who lost nothing.
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  • And we'll ask an important question.
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  • And that question: Where was God?
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  • Where was God when the fires burned?
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  • Where was God as people suffered?
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  • Where was God while people were dying?
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  • Where was God in the midst of the devastation?
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  • It's a very important question,
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  • not only in the context of the fires in California,
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  • the hurricanes that buffeted the United States,
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  • but our own lives.
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  • Everybody meets with tragedy, disaster, loss.
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  • And that question is often asked.
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  • That question is: Where was God?
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  • We're heading to Santa Rosa.
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  • By the grace of God, we'll find an answer to that question.
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  • [Soft music]
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  • -Marc Selivanoff: So it was, uh, Sunday night.
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  • We went to bed, uh, October 8.
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  • And, uh, about maybe 1:30 in the morning,
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  • the, uh, my wife got a phone call.
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  • And I could hear the voice on the other end of the line
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  • was very, uh, tense, and very intense
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  • maybe would be a better word.
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  • And she was basically, uh, screaming,
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  • "There's a fire; it's massive; it's headed your way.
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  • You need to get out, and get out now."
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  • -John: So you get the warning,
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  • you get the phone call, and so what do you do?
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  • -Marc: So, of course, at 1:30 in the morning,
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  • you know, I go and I look outside,
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  • and I could smell the smoke.
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  • And, uh, so we knew that, based on her phone call,
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  • this was something serious that we needed to pay attention to.
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  • So we got up, very groggy, started gathering our pets
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  • and our few things that we could get,
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  • um, loaded them into the car.
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  • And, uh, the smoke was very thick at that point,
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  • and, uh, just headed out and, uh,
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  • so we ended up at a house that we own that was vacant.
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  • We, uh, got settled there,
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  • and then Anthony, my son, said,
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  • "Hey, Dad, let's go back up and see."
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  • And I said, "We'll go as far as we can,
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  • but I don't want to put us in danger."
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  • -John: So you came back up here to the house.
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  • What did you find?
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  • -Marc: Um, we came back up, and the fire was,
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  • was raging, uh, down in the residential community.
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  • It was on this hill and on this hill as well.
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  • -John: But the house?
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  • -Marc: The house was still standing at that point.
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  • So we, uh, we were fighting the fire with the intention
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  • of obviously saving our home and all of our possessions.
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  • -Catherine Hamilton: We got a call at 2 a.m.
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  • -Alvin Hamilton: Monday night, yeah.
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  • -Catherine: At midnight, here.
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  • -Alvin: It's, it's like complete hopelessness,
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  • because you're gone, except that you have God.
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  • And so the first thing that you do is the only thing
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  • that you know you can hang on to is God.
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  • I mean, everything else, as what you physically can do,
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  • is not there.
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  • -Catherine: After I hear fire, I hear, in the background,
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  • "Get out! Get out! You're being evacuated.
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  • The fire is two to four blocks away from your house."
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  • And I panicked.
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  • And so I told Alvin, I said,
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  • "Pray for me. Pray for me.
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  • Pray for my sanity, and so that I can be able to pray."
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  • Because my mind, I felt like my mind was just gone.
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  • -Alvin: "I sought the Lord,
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  • and he heard me and delivered me from all my fears."
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  • -Catherine: So the minute he prayed for me,
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  • not for the fire,
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  • not for anything that was happening,
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  • I just needed my calmness and my sanity
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  • to be able to be in tune with God.
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  • Because I knew that if I had that,
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  • I had everything else.
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  • So I said--we started praying; our prayers didn't last long.
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  • They were desperate; they were, uh,
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  • they were rushed.
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  • There was a need; it was urgent; it was very, very urgent.
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  • I said, "Please save my children."
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  • -Alvin: "The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them
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  • that fear Him and delivered them."
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  • -Catherine: So immediately after we prayed that,
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  • and then we couldn't pray anymore,
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  • and we started saying verses in the Bible.
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  • And so we grasped, um, Psalms 34 and Psalms 91,
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  • and we were saying it back and forth, back and forth.
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  • -Alvin: "I will bless the Lord at all times:
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  • His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
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  • My soul shall make her boast in the Lord.
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  • The humble shall hear thereof and be glad.
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  • Oh, magnify the Lord with me,
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  • and let us exalt His name together."
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  • -Catherine: So what really was the most amazing miracle
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  • about this home is that the fire started miles east,
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  • behind us, and it stopped right at my backyard,
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  • and do not proceed to any other home beyond us.
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  • -Courtney Asker: My mom woke up at 11:45,
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  • and she smelled smoke.
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  • So she woke my dad up, and he just pretty much said,
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  • "You know, you're freaking out; go to bed; we're fine."
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  • And so then she called 911, and they ended up telling her,
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  • "No, you're fine."
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  • Like, "You have nothing to worry about.
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  • You don't have to leave. There's a fire being contained."
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  • Then it was at 1:19 a.m. was when her friend texted again
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  • that Paradise Ridge Winery is on fire,
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  • and that's right below where we are.
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  • And so that's when my mom, like, started screaming,
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  • so that's how I woke up.
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  • But they still never told me what was going on.
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  • So then I went in, and I helped my mom.
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  • And she had grabbed, like, our metal box with our passports
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  • and birth certificates and stuff.
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  • And then she grabbed a couple photo albums,
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  • like, her and my dad and my grandpa and stuff.
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  • And so then I went back to my room, and I just,
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  • like, changed into sweats real quick,
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  • and I put on a pair of flip flops, and then I grabbed
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  • my school backpack and a stuffed animal and one picture.
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  • And so, when we were driving down the hill,
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  • like I just remember seeing, like, red everywhere.
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  • Then I understood, you know, like, okay,
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  • it's, like, the mountain's on fire.
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  • [Ominous music]
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  • -John: Now, here's a question: Can God be trusted?
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  • Either you've asked that question yourself,
  • 00:08:08.040 --> 00:08:10.010
  • or you know somebody who has.
  • 00:08:10.020 --> 00:08:11.160
  • And I've got an answer for you.
  • 00:08:11.170 --> 00:08:13.170
  • I'd like you to get today's free offer,
  • 00:08:13.180 --> 00:08:15.230
  • "Can God Be Trusted?"
  • 00:08:15.240 --> 00:08:17.270
  • To receive it, call 800-253-3000,
  • 00:08:17.280 --> 00:08:21.100
  • write to the address on your screen,
  • 00:08:21.110 --> 00:08:22.260
  • or visit us at iiwoffer.com.
  • 00:08:22.270 --> 00:08:26.180
  • Can God be trusted? I have an answer for you.
  • 00:08:26.190 --> 00:08:29.100
  • 800-253-3000,
  • 00:08:29.110 --> 00:08:31.060
  • or visit us at iiwoffer.com.
  • 00:08:31.070 --> 00:08:34.050
  • -Announcer 1: Have you ever wondered
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  • if you're good enough to be saved?
  • 00:08:35.170 --> 00:08:37.100
  • It's a common question that has discouraged many people.
  • 00:08:37.110 --> 00:08:40.030
  • But it doesn't have to discourage you.
  • 00:08:40.040 --> 00:08:42.060
  • "Taking a Stand"
  • 00:08:42.070 --> 00:08:43.050
  • is a powerful five-part series presented by
  • 00:08:43.060 --> 00:08:45.020
  • Pastor John Bradshaw
  • 00:08:45.030 --> 00:08:46.100
  • that will help you discover the assurance of salvation.
  • 00:08:46.110 --> 00:08:49.210
  • -Announcer 2: Call 1-888-664-5573
  • 00:08:49.220 --> 00:08:52.290
  • to order the "Taking a Stand" DVD.
  • 00:08:53.000 --> 00:08:55.040
  • Or download it from our webstore at
  • 00:08:55.050 --> 00:08:56.240
  • www.itiswritten.shop.
  • 00:08:56.250 --> 00:08:59.230
  • Jesus offers salvation as a free gift to everyone,
  • 00:08:59.240 --> 00:09:02.230
  • including you.
  • 00:09:02.240 --> 00:09:04.090
  • [Music]
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  • -Marc Selivanoff: As the fire came in the morning,
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  • it basically, once the house caught fire,
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  • there was nothing that we could do at that point.
  • 00:09:18.020 --> 00:09:20.080
  • -John Bradshaw: So help me get the picture of this.
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  • Here's your home and, and everything.
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  • So around here, there was, the stuff was on fire.
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  • -Marc: The back hill behind our house was on fire,
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  • and the hill over there behind you was on fire as well.
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  • And there's actually two houses that were there.
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  • And while we were here, those exploded and went up.
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  • Probably 100-foot wall of fire right just over there.
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  • There's two houses over there on that side of the property that,
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  • while we were here fighting the fire,
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  • went up in smoke, and you could hear them.
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  • It was like a 747 just taking off,
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  • and the popping of windows and whatever else happens
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  • when a house goes up in flame.
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  • And my son actually went over
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  • to make sure that that side of the property was okay.
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  • So he was over there fighting the fire.
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  • I was here, and I decided we should be together,
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  • so I left this and went to be with him.
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  • But what ended up happening then is that the wind
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  • brought the fire up from the residential community.
  • 00:10:09.110 --> 00:10:12.080
  • Um, it overcame, and landed on the house,
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  • and the house went up in flames.
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  • And at that point we had to leave as well.
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  • [Soft sad music]
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  • -Courtney Asker: That Monday,
  • 00:10:22.170 --> 00:10:23.280
  • we still hadn't known, like, what,
  • 00:10:23.290 --> 00:10:27.160
  • what anything looked like.
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  • We didn't know if anything had burnt down.
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  • I couldn't eat or sleep at all
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  • because I didn't know if our house was okay.
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  • And my mom pretty much kept saying, like,
  • 00:10:35.220 --> 00:10:37.050
  • "There's no way that it could have survived."
  • 00:10:37.060 --> 00:10:39.090
  • I just kept saying, like, "No, it has to be there.
  • 00:10:39.100 --> 00:10:41.260
  • Like, there's no way it can be gone."
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  • And I think it was about, like, that evening,
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  • Monday--I have a friend who was going,
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  • and driving around and taking videos.
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  • And so I texted him, and I was, like,
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  • "Go to this address."
  • 00:10:54.170 --> 00:10:55.180
  • And so he went there, and he took pictures,
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  • and it was all gone.
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  • And, like, I just remember, like,
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  • breaking down completely and, like,
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  • I couldn't even stand because of it.
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  • So we didn't find out until, like, that evening,
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  • the day after the fires.
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  • -John: When did you come back?
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  • How soon could you, could you come back,
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  • to have a look at your place?
  • 00:11:14.130 --> 00:11:15.190
  • -Courtney: Um, we didn't come here until,
  • 00:11:15.200 --> 00:11:19.170
  • like, two weeks after.
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  • -John: Tell me what that was like.
  • 00:11:22.090 --> 00:11:24.060
  • -Courtney: Um, well, the first time it was only my parents
  • 00:11:24.070 --> 00:11:27.170
  • who came here because I was with a friend.
  • 00:11:27.180 --> 00:11:29.250
  • And then I think maybe a little less than a week after,
  • 00:11:29.260 --> 00:11:34.060
  • that's when I came here for the first time.
  • 00:11:34.070 --> 00:11:37.060
  • 'Cause that's when they were finally, like,
  • 00:11:37.070 --> 00:11:38.280
  • letting people come up and, like,
  • 00:11:38.290 --> 00:11:40.210
  • search for things, you know, in their house.
  • 00:11:40.220 --> 00:11:43.150
  • Since, like, after we had found out about it,
  • 00:11:43.160 --> 00:11:45.220
  • like, I wasn't necessarily, like, that emotional.
  • 00:11:45.230 --> 00:11:50.180
  • And so I didn't think that I would, like,
  • 00:11:50.190 --> 00:11:53.040
  • start crying when we come, when we came up here.
  • 00:11:53.050 --> 00:11:55.170
  • But when we got here and, like, I actually got out of the car,
  • 00:11:55.180 --> 00:11:58.100
  • like, that's when I just started sobbing with my dad,
  • 00:11:58.110 --> 00:12:02.010
  • pretty much.
  • 00:12:02.020 --> 00:12:03.080
  • And, like, that's the first time I've seen him cry in, like,
  • 00:12:03.090 --> 00:12:05.190
  • a really long time.
  • 00:12:05.200 --> 00:12:07.150
  • -John: I hate to ask you this question,
  • 00:12:07.160 --> 00:12:09.090
  • but if the firetrucks had somehow arrived an hour earlier,
  • 00:12:09.100 --> 00:12:12.130
  • might your house still be standing?
  • 00:12:12.140 --> 00:12:14.080
  • -Marc: It would be standing, but I don't,
  • 00:12:14.090 --> 00:12:16.090
  • I don't hold that against the firemen.
  • 00:12:16.100 --> 00:12:17.260
  • -John: Oh, yeah, sure.
  • 00:12:17.270 --> 00:12:18.260
  • -Marc: Yeah, this fire was so large and so, uh,
  • 00:12:18.270 --> 00:12:21.080
  • out of control and so hot...
  • 00:12:21.090 --> 00:12:23.290
  • I think the key priority then
  • 00:12:24.000 --> 00:12:25.070
  • was saving lives and making sure that they could save
  • 00:12:25.080 --> 00:12:28.280
  • as many people as they could.
  • 00:12:28.290 --> 00:12:30.190
  • -John: You were kind of the last--
  • 00:12:30.200 --> 00:12:32.120
  • -Marc: The last, the last one.
  • 00:12:32.130 --> 00:12:34.110
  • Yeah.
  • 00:12:34.120 --> 00:12:35.120
  • And as we were standing there watching,
  • 00:12:35.130 --> 00:12:37.180
  • the firetrucks arrived,
  • 00:12:37.190 --> 00:12:39.190
  • and that's part of the reason why they survived
  • 00:12:39.200 --> 00:12:41.240
  • is three firetrucks arrived on the street on the other side
  • 00:12:41.250 --> 00:12:45.140
  • and ended up, uh, able to save--
  • 00:12:45.150 --> 00:12:47.200
  • and the winds, you know, cooperated,
  • 00:12:47.210 --> 00:12:49.050
  • but the firemen were able to save, uh, those houses there,
  • 00:12:49.060 --> 00:12:52.240
  • which I'm grateful for.
  • 00:12:52.250 --> 00:12:53.190
  • I'm happy that they have their home.
  • 00:12:53.200 --> 00:12:57.030
  • [Ominous music]
  • 00:12:57.040 --> 00:13:04.160
  • -Announcer 3: In Matthew 4:4, the Word of God says,
  • 00:13:08.020 --> 00:13:10.200
  • "It is Written,
  • 00:13:10.210 --> 00:13:11.170
  • 'Man shall not live by bread alone,
  • 00:13:11.180 --> 00:13:13.240
  • but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'"
  • 00:13:13.250 --> 00:13:17.190
  • "Every Word" is a one-minute Bible-based daily devotional
  • 00:13:17.200 --> 00:13:20.230
  • presented by Pastor John Bradshaw
  • 00:13:20.240 --> 00:13:22.280
  • and designed especially for busy people like you.
  • 00:13:22.290 --> 00:13:25.290
  • Look for "Every Word" on selected networks,
  • 00:13:26.000 --> 00:13:28.260
  • or watch it online every day on our website,
  • 00:13:28.270 --> 00:13:31.050
  • itiswritten.com.
  • 00:13:31.060 --> 00:13:33.060
  • Receive a daily spiritual boost.
  • 00:13:33.070 --> 00:13:35.130
  • Watch "Every Word." You'll be glad you did.
  • 00:13:35.140 --> 00:13:38.190
  • [Soft sad music]
  • 00:13:42.010 --> 00:13:44.160
  • -Catherine Hamilton: I'm not sure what God is trying
  • 00:13:44.170 --> 00:13:46.020
  • to tell us, but I know that God spoke in Santa Rosa.
  • 00:13:46.030 --> 00:13:50.150
  • -Marc Selivanoff: You know, even now there's times when
  • 00:13:50.160 --> 00:13:52.250
  • I'll be talking on my phone, or at the end of the day,
  • 00:13:52.260 --> 00:13:55.060
  • and I'll just start driving here,
  • 00:13:55.070 --> 00:13:57.260
  • and realize, wait a second, what am I doing?
  • 00:13:57.270 --> 00:14:00.150
  • I don't live here; [chuckles] I live over there.
  • 00:14:00.160 --> 00:14:02.250
  • And, uh, so, you know, it's been a challenge,
  • 00:14:02.260 --> 00:14:06.010
  • and every day there's new emotions and new,
  • 00:14:06.020 --> 00:14:08.170
  • uh, decisions and new challenges that come up.
  • 00:14:08.180 --> 00:14:12.180
  • But, uh, you know, we're confident that God
  • 00:14:12.190 --> 00:14:15.070
  • has not forgotten about us,
  • 00:14:15.080 --> 00:14:17.100
  • that He has provided for us,
  • 00:14:17.110 --> 00:14:18.270
  • and that He is walking with us each step of the way.
  • 00:14:18.280 --> 00:14:22.080
  • -Courtney Asker: I don't think I ever, like, got angry at Him,
  • 00:14:23.040 --> 00:14:25.220
  • but I think I was just kind of, almost let down, you know.
  • 00:14:25.230 --> 00:14:30.290
  • When we, when me and my mom were driving down the hill, um,
  • 00:14:31.000 --> 00:14:34.280
  • so there's, like, a little pond that's right there.
  • 00:14:34.290 --> 00:14:36.290
  • You can kind of see it, like, a little lake.
  • 00:14:37.000 --> 00:14:38.170
  • -John Bradshaw: Yeah.
  • 00:14:38.180 --> 00:14:39.200
  • -Courtney: I remember, like, she was just praying,
  • 00:14:39.210 --> 00:14:40.240
  • like, "Use that lake."
  • 00:14:40.250 --> 00:14:42.260
  • You know, just use that tiny little thing just to shield,
  • 00:14:42.270 --> 00:14:45.100
  • like, our house.
  • 00:14:45.110 --> 00:14:47.030
  • And, like, I actually thought that it would work.
  • 00:14:47.040 --> 00:14:51.080
  • You know, I thought that He would,
  • 00:14:51.090 --> 00:14:52.270
  • like, actually protect, like, all of our houses and stuff.
  • 00:14:52.280 --> 00:14:56.040
  • So I think, I just felt like, you know,
  • 00:14:56.050 --> 00:14:58.090
  • kind of let down by Him a bit.
  • 00:14:58.100 --> 00:15:01.020
  • -Alvin Hamilton: I, I felt a heavy load of responsibility
  • 00:15:01.030 --> 00:15:06.210
  • that--why, God?
  • 00:15:06.220 --> 00:15:08.170
  • You picked me. You picked our home.
  • 00:15:08.180 --> 00:15:11.050
  • You saved our family.
  • 00:15:11.060 --> 00:15:13.000
  • I just felt a heavy load.
  • 00:15:13.010 --> 00:15:14.090
  • Lord, I'm going to have to do a lot more.
  • 00:15:14.100 --> 00:15:17.080
  • I'm going to have to do a lot better
  • 00:15:17.090 --> 00:15:18.200
  • because this is just incredible, you know.
  • 00:15:18.210 --> 00:15:21.210
  • And, you know, what happened is this home next to us that,
  • 00:15:21.220 --> 00:15:26.100
  • that burned down was one of the only homes
  • 00:15:26.110 --> 00:15:29.030
  • that people could actually drive up and see
  • 00:15:29.040 --> 00:15:31.000
  • because the military and the police
  • 00:15:31.010 --> 00:15:33.130
  • had blocked off so many areas.
  • 00:15:33.140 --> 00:15:35.070
  • So we had car after car driving into our cul-de-sac.
  • 00:15:35.080 --> 00:15:38.280
  • Some people stopped, and they would come,
  • 00:15:38.290 --> 00:15:41.020
  • and they would talk to us,
  • 00:15:41.030 --> 00:15:42.100
  • and we would tell them what God had did for us.
  • 00:15:42.110 --> 00:15:44.180
  • People would come in and go, like,
  • 00:15:44.190 --> 00:15:45.240
  • "Man, you guys were lucky."
  • 00:15:45.250 --> 00:15:47.040
  • You know, we weren't lucky.
  • 00:15:47.050 --> 00:15:48.210
  • God did this for us. It was outrageous.
  • 00:15:48.220 --> 00:15:51.280
  • "Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
  • 00:15:51.290 --> 00:15:55.050
  • but the Lord delivereth him out of them all."
  • 00:15:55.060 --> 00:15:58.030
  • -Catherine: So what I learned from it is that
  • 00:15:58.040 --> 00:16:00.020
  • you can depend on God's words like this.
  • 00:16:00.030 --> 00:16:02.170
  • It has ears, so it hears when you pray.
  • 00:16:02.180 --> 00:16:05.060
  • It has hands, so it can stop things from happening.
  • 00:16:05.070 --> 00:16:09.190
  • It has legs; it can actually move and just do stuff for you.
  • 00:16:09.200 --> 00:16:14.210
  • So it is really actually actively a life.
  • 00:16:14.220 --> 00:16:17.120
  • It does stuff.
  • 00:16:17.130 --> 00:16:18.270
  • -Alvin: "O taste and see that the Lord is good:
  • 00:16:18.280 --> 00:16:22.260
  • blessed is the man that trusteth in Him."
  • 00:16:22.270 --> 00:16:26.110
  • -Catherine: So this Word, in times of danger,
  • 00:16:26.120 --> 00:16:29.000
  • in the future, I know that I can depend on it.
  • 00:16:29.010 --> 00:16:31.170
  • I know I can go to it. I know I can tell it, ask it.
  • 00:16:31.180 --> 00:16:36.040
  • I know that it will hear.
  • 00:16:36.050 --> 00:16:37.180
  • It will see.
  • 00:16:37.190 --> 00:16:38.210
  • It has a mouth; it can speak.
  • 00:16:38.220 --> 00:16:40.250
  • It can say, "Wind, time to turn around.
  • 00:16:40.260 --> 00:16:44.040
  • Don't touch that house."
  • 00:16:44.050 --> 00:16:45.290
  • And it actually obeys and does stuff like that.
  • 00:16:46.000 --> 00:16:48.270
  • It is a miracle!
  • 00:16:48.280 --> 00:16:51.050
  • "He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High
  • 00:16:51.060 --> 00:16:53.150
  • shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
  • 00:16:53.160 --> 00:16:55.280
  • I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress:
  • 00:16:55.290 --> 00:16:59.140
  • my God; in Him will I trust.
  • 00:16:59.150 --> 00:17:01.210
  • Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night;
  • 00:17:01.220 --> 00:17:04.100
  • nor for the arrow that flieth by day;
  • 00:17:04.110 --> 00:17:06.210
  • nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness;
  • 00:17:06.220 --> 00:17:09.110
  • nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday."
  • 00:17:09.120 --> 00:17:13.080
  • -John: So let me ask you a question.
  • 00:17:14.090 --> 00:17:15.290
  • You're a Christian. You're a believer.
  • 00:17:16.000 --> 00:17:18.070
  • You're in it with God, boots and all.
  • 00:17:18.080 --> 00:17:22.140
  • Where was God in the middle of this?
  • 00:17:22.150 --> 00:17:24.230
  • Your, your home has been destroyed.
  • 00:17:24.240 --> 00:17:27.200
  • Your possessions are being obliterated.
  • 00:17:27.210 --> 00:17:30.220
  • Not everything, the things you hold most precious are safe.
  • 00:17:30.230 --> 00:17:33.180
  • -Marc: Yes.
  • 00:17:33.190 --> 00:17:34.200
  • -John: All this other stuff, which is precious,
  • 00:17:34.210 --> 00:17:37.100
  • is going up in smoke literally.
  • 00:17:37.110 --> 00:17:39.000
  • -Marc: Yeah.
  • 00:17:39.010 --> 00:17:39.290
  • -John: And, and the loss is astronomical.
  • 00:17:40.000 --> 00:17:41.200
  • Where is God?
  • 00:17:41.210 --> 00:17:42.220
  • -Marc: You know, that's a fair question,
  • 00:17:42.230 --> 00:17:44.060
  • and it's something that I think you do wrestle with
  • 00:17:44.070 --> 00:17:47.090
  • because we know that God could prevent this.
  • 00:17:47.100 --> 00:17:50.180
  • -John: Sure.
  • 00:17:50.190 --> 00:17:51.200
  • -Marc: And, you know, it says in Scripture that
  • 00:17:51.210 --> 00:17:53.250
  • "before you call, I will answer."
  • 00:17:53.260 --> 00:17:55.240
  • And in our case,
  • 00:17:55.250 --> 00:17:57.220
  • what gave me hope and encouragement
  • 00:17:57.230 --> 00:18:00.040
  • and a confidence that God was with us,
  • 00:18:00.050 --> 00:18:02.260
  • in spite of what just happened to us,
  • 00:18:02.270 --> 00:18:05.150
  • was we had, uh, been, uh, had acquired a property.
  • 00:18:05.160 --> 00:18:11.220
  • So we had picked this up back in April.
  • 00:18:11.230 --> 00:18:14.150
  • And, uh, the plan was just simply to fix it and flip it.
  • 00:18:14.160 --> 00:18:18.000
  • But we made a decision around July
  • 00:18:18.010 --> 00:18:19.220
  • that maybe we should keep it as a rental.
  • 00:18:19.230 --> 00:18:22.030
  • And that turned out to be a very important decision.
  • 00:18:22.040 --> 00:18:26.040
  • And we were literally two days away
  • 00:18:26.050 --> 00:18:28.190
  • from renting it when the fire happened.
  • 00:18:28.200 --> 00:18:30.290
  • And so for us, the blessing was that we had a place to go.
  • 00:18:31.000 --> 00:18:36.020
  • It had just been rehabbed. No one had ever lived there.
  • 00:18:36.030 --> 00:18:38.200
  • And we were able to, at 2 in the morning when we left here,
  • 00:18:38.210 --> 00:18:41.030
  • all in a panic, we were able to go there
  • 00:18:41.040 --> 00:18:44.080
  • to a place of safety and a place of quiet.
  • 00:18:44.090 --> 00:18:46.130
  • And so for me, when I feel overwhelmed about that,
  • 00:18:46.140 --> 00:18:49.100
  • I, I know without a doubt that God had prepared a place for us,
  • 00:18:49.110 --> 00:18:53.250
  • and that He was watching out for us,
  • 00:18:53.260 --> 00:18:56.100
  • and that we would be okay.
  • 00:18:56.110 --> 00:18:58.190
  • -Courtney: Before the fires when I was meeting
  • 00:18:58.200 --> 00:19:00.160
  • with my youth pastor, um, when I told her that I was,
  • 00:19:00.170 --> 00:19:04.150
  • like, "Okay, I'm ready; like, I want to do it.
  • 00:19:04.160 --> 00:19:06.240
  • I want to get baptized."
  • 00:19:06.250 --> 00:19:07.260
  • It was about a week and a half before the fires,
  • 00:19:07.270 --> 00:19:10.100
  • and that's when she had told me.
  • 00:19:10.110 --> 00:19:12.100
  • And she had said that Satan is pretty much going to test me.
  • 00:19:12.110 --> 00:19:17.280
  • She said, "It doesn't happen to everyone
  • 00:19:17.290 --> 00:19:20.050
  • who's going to get baptized, but I have had situations where,
  • 00:19:20.060 --> 00:19:24.130
  • you know, I've had kids who have had stuff happen to them
  • 00:19:24.140 --> 00:19:27.220
  • right before they get baptized,
  • 00:19:27.230 --> 00:19:29.180
  • and that makes them lose a little bit of faith in God,
  • 00:19:29.190 --> 00:19:32.250
  • or not trust Him, or, you know, get angry at Him or whatever."
  • 00:19:32.260 --> 00:19:37.080
  • And so she said, you know, "Just be aware."
  • 00:19:37.090 --> 00:19:40.110
  • Like, there's probably going to be something happen.
  • 00:19:40.120 --> 00:19:42.180
  • And then a week and a half later,
  • 00:19:42.190 --> 00:19:43.250
  • that's when the fires happened.
  • 00:19:43.260 --> 00:19:46.010
  • -John: So you weren't tempted just to give up on God?
  • 00:19:46.020 --> 00:19:48.040
  • -Courtney: Umh-umm.
  • 00:19:48.050 --> 00:19:50.030
  • -John: Good for you.
  • 00:19:50.040 --> 00:19:51.230
  • You know, it really does make you wonder.
  • 00:19:58.000 --> 00:20:01.170
  • If you've not been through a loss like this--
  • 00:20:01.180 --> 00:20:05.150
  • the vast majority of us have not--
  • 00:20:05.160 --> 00:20:09.160
  • it's kind of hard to put yourself
  • 00:20:09.170 --> 00:20:11.060
  • into somebody else's shoes.
  • 00:20:11.070 --> 00:20:12.170
  • What must it be like to go through?
  • 00:20:12.180 --> 00:20:15.250
  • Well, of course, while not everybody has had their home
  • 00:20:15.260 --> 00:20:19.200
  • burn or been through Hurricane Irma or some such thing,
  • 00:20:19.210 --> 00:20:25.040
  • we all suffer loss on some level.
  • 00:20:25.050 --> 00:20:29.220
  • And it tends to shake our faith somehow.
  • 00:20:29.230 --> 00:20:34.190
  • Sometimes it's a seismic shake, sometimes a little, small shake.
  • 00:20:34.200 --> 00:20:40.150
  • But that question comes to you: Where was God?
  • 00:20:40.160 --> 00:20:44.290
  • Where was God when my child got desperately ill?
  • 00:20:45.000 --> 00:20:49.020
  • Where was God when my spouse...ruined the marriage?
  • 00:20:49.030 --> 00:20:55.050
  • Where was God when the fire burned?
  • 00:20:55.060 --> 00:20:58.010
  • You know.
  • 00:20:58.020 --> 00:20:59.040
  • Where was God?
  • 00:20:59.050 --> 00:21:01.220
  • The place you find answers to that sort of question
  • 00:21:01.230 --> 00:21:04.200
  • is the Bible,
  • 00:21:04.210 --> 00:21:05.230
  • the only reliable place that you can find an answer.
  • 00:21:05.240 --> 00:21:08.280
  • So let me read to you from 2 Corinthians chapter 4,
  • 00:21:08.290 --> 00:21:13.210
  • from verse 16.
  • 00:21:13.220 --> 00:21:15.090
  • Here's what the Bible says:
  • 00:21:15.100 --> 00:21:17.290
  • "Therefore we do not lose heart.
  • 00:21:18.000 --> 00:21:20.090
  • Even though our outward man is perishing,
  • 00:21:20.100 --> 00:21:22.140
  • yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.
  • 00:21:22.150 --> 00:21:26.210
  • For our light affliction, which is but for a moment,
  • 00:21:26.220 --> 00:21:30.020
  • is working for us a far more exceeding
  • 00:21:30.030 --> 00:21:32.130
  • and eternal weight of glory,
  • 00:21:32.140 --> 00:21:34.270
  • while we do not look not at the things which are seen,
  • 00:21:34.280 --> 00:21:37.150
  • but at the things which are not seen.
  • 00:21:37.160 --> 00:21:40.270
  • For the things which are seen are temporary,
  • 00:21:40.280 --> 00:21:44.210
  • but the things which are not seen are eternal."
  • 00:21:44.220 --> 00:21:48.290
  • So how about that?
  • 00:21:49.000 --> 00:21:49.290
  • The Bible talks about our "light affliction."
  • 00:21:50.000 --> 00:21:52.230
  • Now, I don't want to meet any of these householders
  • 00:21:52.240 --> 00:21:55.180
  • and tell them, "You lost everything.
  • 00:21:55.190 --> 00:21:56.220
  • That's a 'light affliction.'"
  • 00:21:56.230 --> 00:21:58.120
  • But if you look for God in the flames,
  • 00:21:58.130 --> 00:22:01.170
  • there's a chance you might not be able to see Him.
  • 00:22:01.180 --> 00:22:03.170
  • But if you keep on looking, God will come into view.
  • 00:22:03.180 --> 00:22:05.150
  • He'll come into focus.
  • 00:22:05.160 --> 00:22:06.280
  • If you're trying to hear the voice of God
  • 00:22:06.290 --> 00:22:08.160
  • while the fire engines are wailing,
  • 00:22:08.170 --> 00:22:10.230
  • it might be right then you can't discern
  • 00:22:10.240 --> 00:22:12.130
  • the voice of God.
  • 00:22:12.140 --> 00:22:13.060
  • It may be that you can.
  • 00:22:13.070 --> 00:22:15.100
  • But if you hang in there, God's leading will become clear.
  • 00:22:15.110 --> 00:22:18.140
  • And whatever you're going through right now,
  • 00:22:18.150 --> 00:22:20.130
  • whatever you have faced or will face,
  • 00:22:20.140 --> 00:22:22.180
  • you can know that God is right there with you, too.
  • 00:22:22.190 --> 00:22:26.150
  • [Ominous music]
  • 00:22:26.160 --> 00:22:32.220
  • -John: Now, here's a question: Can God be trusted?
  • 00:22:34.240 --> 00:22:38.160
  • Either you've asked that question yourself,
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  • or you know somebody who has.
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  • And I've got an answer for you.
  • 00:22:42.060 --> 00:22:44.010
  • I'd like you to get today's free offer,
  • 00:22:44.020 --> 00:22:46.080
  • "Can God Be Trusted?"
  • 00:22:46.090 --> 00:22:48.110
  • To receive it, call 800-253-3000,
  • 00:22:48.120 --> 00:22:51.250
  • write to the address on your screen,
  • 00:22:51.260 --> 00:22:53.160
  • or visit us at iiwoffer.com.
  • 00:22:53.170 --> 00:22:57.040
  • Can God be trusted? I have an answer for you.
  • 00:22:57.050 --> 00:22:59.260
  • 800-253-3000,
  • 00:22:59.270 --> 00:23:01.260
  • or visit us at iiwoffer.com.
  • 00:23:01.270 --> 00:23:04.220
  • -John: Thank you for remembering that It Is Written
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  • exists because of the kindness of people just like you.
  • 00:23:07.050 --> 00:23:10.190
  • To support this international life-changing ministry,
  • 00:23:10.200 --> 00:23:13.240
  • please call us now at 800-253-3000.
  • 00:23:13.250 --> 00:23:17.290
  • You can send your tax-deductible gift
  • 00:23:18.000 --> 00:23:19.150
  • to the address on your screen,
  • 00:23:19.160 --> 00:23:20.270
  • or you can visit us online at itiswritten.com.
  • 00:23:20.280 --> 00:23:24.200
  • Thank you for your prayers and for your financial support.
  • 00:23:24.210 --> 00:23:27.190
  • Our number again is 800-253-3000.
  • 00:23:27.200 --> 00:23:31.220
  • Or you can visit us online at itiswritten.com.
  • 00:23:31.230 --> 00:23:35.040
  • [Soft piano music]
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  • [Soft piano music]
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  • [Soft piano music]
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  • -John Bradshaw: The chainsaws are whirring in the background.
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  • The construction--or maybe the destruction--equipment
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  • is working behind us because great tragedy has taken place.
  • 00:23:59.260 --> 00:24:03.240
  • Real loss.
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  • Where was God?
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  • Let Jesus tell you.
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  • We're going to settle it right now.
  • 00:24:08.280 --> 00:24:10.180
  • Matthew chapter 28 and the second part of verse 20.
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  • Jesus said, "...and lo, I am with you always,
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  • even to the end of the age."
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  • And then Matthew wrote, "Amen."
  • 00:24:23.020 --> 00:24:25.100
  • So that settles it.
  • 00:24:25.110 --> 00:24:26.180
  • Where was God?
  • 00:24:26.190 --> 00:24:27.220
  • He was with those who were suffering.
  • 00:24:27.230 --> 00:24:30.050
  • Where was God?
  • 00:24:30.060 --> 00:24:31.110
  • He was with you in your own personal hell.
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  • Where was God?
  • 00:24:34.160 --> 00:24:36.000
  • He was walking beside you.
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  • You know what He was doing? He was carrying you.
  • 00:24:37.110 --> 00:24:40.280
  • Because it's the grace of God that enables us
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  • to accomplish or do or endure anything at all.
  • 00:24:43.050 --> 00:24:47.040
  • If we look at circumstances, our faith might be shaken.
  • 00:24:47.050 --> 00:24:50.280
  • If you'll look at the Word of God,
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  • look to the cross on which Jesus died for you.
  • 00:24:52.070 --> 00:24:56.060
  • If you look to God's promises,
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  • you will know, and you will be certain.
  • 00:24:57.250 --> 00:24:59.290
  • He never leaves you;
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  • He's always with you, no matter what.
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  • And best of all,
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  • one day soon Jesus will return and gather us together
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  • and take us home,
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  • to a land where there'll be no loss, no death,
  • 00:25:13.280 --> 00:25:17.270
  • no devastation, no disaster.
  • 00:25:17.280 --> 00:25:20.000
  • We'll never wonder, "Where was God?"
  • 00:25:20.010 --> 00:25:22.110
  • For we will be there in God's presence forever.
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  • You want to be there?
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  • I know you do.
  • 00:25:26.060 --> 00:25:28.150
  • Let's pray together now.
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  • Father in heaven,
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  • we thank You for the assurance that You are with us.
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  • You never abandon us.
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  • In our darkest moments, You are there.
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  • In our struggles, You are there.
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  • In times of loss, grief, despair, difficulty,
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  • You are there.
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  • And in times of joy and celebration,
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  • in times of gladness, You are there.
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  • Lord, we thank You today.
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  • Though we don't always understand what You allow,
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  • we understand enough of You to know that You are good,
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  • that You are God.
  • 00:25:58.240 --> 00:26:00.230
  • We look forward to the day when Jesus returns,
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  • and the sadnesses and the sufferings of this earth
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  • will be gone forever.
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  • Let that day come soon.
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  • Friend, you want to be ready then.
  • 00:26:07.220 --> 00:26:09.240
  • You want to be ready now.
  • 00:26:09.250 --> 00:26:11.110
  • Would you open your heart to God now and say,
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  • "Lord, I want you to be my Lord.
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  • I want the God of heaven to be my God.
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  • I want Jesus to be my Savior"?
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  • If that's your prayer, pray it in your heart now.
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  • And, Lord, hear the cry of our heart.
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  • We look forward to seeing Jesus soon
  • 00:26:26.040 --> 00:26:27.280
  • and spending eternity with You.
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  • We thank You for it.
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  • And we pray, and we trust,
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  • in Jesus' name. Amen.
  • 00:26:34.120 --> 00:26:37.070
  • Thanks so much for joining me today.
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  • I'm looking forward to seeing you again next time.
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  • Until then, remember:
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  • "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone,
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  • but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.'"
  • 00:26:47.190 --> 00:26:52.120
  • [Theme music]
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  • [Theme music]
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