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Sunday Sermon – 7/8/01
The Mechanic – Psalm 139:14


The Mechanic

"I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvelous are Your works, and that my soul knows very well" (Psalm 139:14)

The mechanic who works on my car (David is actually an electrical engineer who has given up his career to help his child) is one of the most interesting and wonderful people I have ever met. David is an intelligent and thoughtful man, and he cares about people. He couldn't always relate to the suffering of others, for he says:

"A man came into my garage a few days ago. He has cancer, and he told me that he only has one year to live. Just a few years ago, I wouldn't have been able to relate - it would have gone in one ear and (he gestured with his hand) out the other! But now, I can." And there's a reason WHY he can, and the answer can be found in his son, Christopher.

David's family, including his brothers, his wife, and sons, are Christians from the country of Jordan. And they're an industrious group. When David and his brothers work on our cars, I know the work will be done right; what's done is only what's needed, and the price will be fair. I like these guys, and there's more to like than just the car repair.

It was about a year ago, that David began to tell me about his son, Christopher. At that time, Christopher was a severely autistic 6-year old, but he hadn't always been like that. At age 1 1/2, this lovely little boy (who was walking and learning to talk) shut down into the private, confined little world of autism.

There is a miracle in all of this. A miracle from God, but one that came through the love, sweat, grit, and determination of Christopher’s parents. David and his wife Martha began taking Christopher for treatments - everywhere! They started taking this wild and (then) mostly uncontrollable child on airplanes all over the world! They prayed, they traveled, and Christopher is better.

Over the past couple of years, Christopher’s autistic symptomatology has been greatly reduced and they now have great hope for recovery. He sits at the table. He eats. He uses a bathroom like everybody else. He responds to his parents, and to his brother Michael. "He now looks just like any other child, and soon," David continued, "Christopher will talk, also."

Some time ago, when I took my car in for some work, David asked me "Why?" He asked, "Why me? Why my wife? Why my son, Michael? Why Christopher? Why did this happen to us?"

I'm often quick with an answer (too quick, sometimes), and I opened my Bible, pointing to my favorite Chapter on suffering, which is 2 Corinthians Chapter 1. Actually, it IS a great Chapter, for it tells us these things happen so we may be enabled to comfort others who are in the same trouble (2 Cor. 1:4). We learn that our circumstances may lead others to Christ (2 Cor. 1:6). We "had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead" - we learn to trust in Him (2 Cor. 1:9). And we suffer that we might learn to pray and be thankful to God (2 Cor. 1:10-11).

These are good Scriptures, but they did not satisfy David at the moment, because he needed my heart right then - not my cleverness in finding appropriate Scriptures.

I asked him, "Why NOT you? If it wasn't you who had suffered this much with your son, who would it be?" It was then that he told me about the man with cancer, that he could now relate to (and wouldn’t have been able to before). You see, Christopher (and his condition) changed them - he changed them all.

There was a piece of stone in Italy, many years ago, which contained a flaw, and therefore it went unused by other sculptors. But Michelangelo, the famous artist, saw into that rock, and chipped away at it, until he had created the beautiful statue "David", which has touched the hearts of millions down through the centuries. If the rock could feel, it would not have liked the process, but the result was wonderful - it became something exquisitely beautiful, and that is what God is doing with His people. The process can be painful, but the results are - wonderful!

David, and Martha, Michael, and Christopher, have been CHANGED by what has happened to them. This boy changed them all. They became caring, dedicated people, experts in this medical area, and they reach out to countless others over the Internet; for there are many others out there, severely damaged by autism. Do you have this difficulty in your family? David and Martha will provide information and understanding in relation to your child.

David and Martha became the right man and woman for precisely this moment in time for the life of their son. David is amazed at the dedication Martha has shown to their children. Michael has become a wonderful brother, who watches out for Christopher, and cares for him. Were these people "fearfully and wonderfully made" by the circumstances of their son? Yes, they were. The things in life we typically run away from, can change us into what God really intends us to be.

Martha is about to take a one-day round trip to New York with Christopher, for yet another follow-up treatment. But she will do this, because she loves her son.

They are "fearfully and wonderfully made" by some of the most awful circumstances imaginable. The question is asked, do we SEEK trouble in order to grow in the Lord? The answer is emphatically - No! We seek our LORD – He will give us the life we need to live, and enable us to live it.

These people are heroes, and the Lord Jesus Christ is the real Hero, the One Who died for you and for me. Our Lord is the great "Mechanic" who saves us and changes us, and through Him, we are indeed "fearfully and wonderfully made."

We receive You, Lord, and we trust in You, now. In Jesus Name. Amen.

David and Martha may be reached through:

Ron Beckham, Pastor
Friday Study Ministries