June 12, 2022
June 12, 2022
Franklin “Bud” Stover: Ride with Confidence…Die with Dignity
In my office, there is a picture that spans four generations. I look at that picture just about every day. The four generations are my father-in-law, me, my two sons-in-law, and my grandson. It speaks to me of legacy, running the good race, and passing the torch from one generation to the next.
Psalm 145:4 reads, “One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts.” (NIV)
In that picture is a man that I had the privilege to follow and two men and a boy I have the responsibility to lead. For me, he was, and for them, I want to be a “Ride or Die Man of God.”
Allow me to share the testimony of my father-in-law, Franklin “Bud” Stover. When Bud was sixteen, he didn’t play sports or hang out after school like his classmates. He drove an empty coal truck to the mines, had it loaded with coal, and drove it back down the mountain so his father could unload it the next day while Bud was in school.
As a teenager, he entered the military to fight in World War II. Bud drove a munitions truck, often behind the enemy lines so the infantry would have what they needed to engage the enemy in the fight of their lives. Once, Bud was separated from his troop. He stopped in a European town to ask where his troop was last seen. He was directed down a windy road through a valley and told they might be in the hills on the other side. Upon arriving on the other side, there were no signs of his comrades, so Bud turned the truck around and drove through the valley, back into town. Upon entering the town, he was told that the road he had passed through twice was full of land mines. Bud accredited God with keeping him safe and directing his truck.
After the war, Bud drove trucks for most of his life. He drove in and out of difficult places, worked on his own truck, and provided for his family. His driving skills impressed state troopers as he backed his rig up along the interstate to pick up a load off a wrecked trailer. He also impressed dock workers as he maneuvered his truck down alleys to loading docks in downtown Philadelphia. But the most impressive thing I ever saw Bud do, he did while on his death bed. As his body was being ravaged with cancer and his life on this earth was nearing an end, the hospice doctor asked him if he knew what was happening to him.
Bud replied, “Well, I am dying in phases.”
The doctor asked, “How do you feel about that?”
Bud answered, “There is no sense getting emotional about it.”
The doctor asked, “How are you able to say that? What is giving you that confidence?”
Bud replied, “My faith in God. My faith in Jesus.” Then he did something that was such a “Ride or Die Man of God” moment.
He sat up in his bed, looked straight into the eyes of the doctor, and asked, “Doc, do you believe?”
When the doctor said that he did, Bud laid back in his bed and simply said, “Good.” It wasn’t long after that Bud went to be with his Lord.
In his life, he rode with confidence. In his death, he died with dignity, knowing that a better world awaited him. That is the kind of legacy I want to pass on to the generations that follow me. Let’s all of us strive to be “ride or die men of God.”
Questions to consider:
Who are you following? Why are you following them?
Who are you leading? How are you leading them?
By: Pastor Jim Pentz, Lead Pastor, New Covenant Assembly of God, Montgomery, PA
Presbyter, North Central Section, PennDel Ministry Network
Today’s Scripture: One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts. (Psalm 145:4, NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.