HE SUFFERED WELL
Sam Holdeman died a faith hero to many. In the past two years, he suffered through heart problems, multiple surgeries, at least six amputations (hands, feet and lower legs), legal blindness, a broken hip, regular dialysis, and more. Yet through it all, Sam’s faith just got stronger, his spirit kinder, and his love for praising God, deeper.
Sam loved to sing. As was pointed out in last month’s Christian Chronicle, Sam served in their Mississippi congregation as a deacon and song leader. Regular dialysis and other complications, however, left Sam weak and in need of air, unable to sing and lead as before. But these setbacks didn’t detour Sam from praising God in “word and deed.” I will forever cherish the memories of Sam lifting his holy arms to heaven in praise to our God during times of worship.
Several months ago, when I asked Sam how he was handling all the changes in his life, Sam shared that he felt God wanted him to “suffer well” as an encouragement to others and to bring glory to our Lord. The apostle Paul could have easily been talking about Sam when he wrote,“And they were glorifying God because of me (Galatians 1:24).”
The following are some of the comments about Sam, recently posted on his wife’s (Tracy) FB page:
- “I remember Mr. Sam was always so kind to me. He was such a sweet man.”
- “His smile, sweet spirit and gentle voice are what I will remember most.” “Sam was a wonderful Christian man.”
- “Only by the Grace of God could he have endured what he did.”
- “He was an awesome man, dad, nurse and friend.”
- “Sam was such a man of peace. ‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God.’”
God’s orchestration of Sam, Tracy and the entire “Holdeman” family coming into our lives has been encouraging, convicting & inspirational. We continue to grieve with all of them and pray for their strength and comfort in the days ahead.
God is good. Mr. Steve