About Me

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I am the Pastor/Teacher of Rivers of Joy Baptist Church in Minford, Ohio since August 2008.  I am married to Charity since June 14, 1969.  I have four grown children.   Having served in the local church for over forty years as Pastor/Teacher, Asso., Youth Pastor, Minister of Education, Building Upkeep, Camp Director, Sunday School Teacher, etc. Also I have worked in the public place for as many years as I have preached. Charity and her sister are co owner of Union Mills Conf. (Bakery) in West Portsmouth Ohio


The events of the last week have left Charity and I drained emotionally. We were expecting our first granddaughter this February. But unexpectedly, the Lord had other plans for her. Eric and Leslie were expecting their first child and so was all our family! After four months of pregnancy, tests showed the baby had developed Cystic Hygroma. They gave them no hope. You can only imagine the depths of agony and grief they suffered -- while hoping against hope. This week the doctors could find no heartbeat.

This puts a perspective on the subject of life in the mother's womb. While we have always believed that life is formed in the mother's womb. We believe God is the giver of life. The moment God breathes life into a body is the moment there is life for eternity.

We believe God controls life and death of every single person that is ever born. God doesn't give us His reasons for His decisions to give life. We just have to accept what God's decisions are.

Those of us who have an inquiring mind would like to delve into the mind of God in these matters. Every life from time has been planned by God. I know there are many who have plummeted into this matter of life and death.

What I want to say, our first granddaughter today is in the care of God. All I know, now today, she is no longer a child and she is perfect. Since I haven't been to Heaven, we are only left to explore the idea of what heaven is going to be like in eternity.

Eric and Leslie had to make some decisions about this matter, and they did just fine. Choices are not easy in these situations of course, and many of us have our idea about what we would do, but no one knows until you are in the crisis of faith yourself. I have learned Eric and Leslie did just wonderful. Eric said, "why do the things that grow your faith have to hurt so bad?"

I want to thank many friends and our family who have entered into this experience with us. Thank you for crying with us and praying for Katie, Eric and Leslie, and the rest of the families who love them. Thank you for your continued prayers for Leslie's recovery.

First, Eric tells me his church family have been just wonderful in their support and care and prayer. They have been there for them in prayer and physically. What a blessing of Christian fellowship.

Secondly, I want to thank our church family who were in our church in Altoona for their support and prayers. It's been eleven years since we were the pastor, but they are still considered our church family. Hardly a day goes by that we don't give thanks for all those wonderful folks. Personal friends I might say. They are not only our friends but our children's as well.

Thank you all for your love to Eric and Leslie.

Drafted by Charles Whisnant, proof read by Charity Whisnant
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