“Mistaken Identity and Awful Surprises: How to Cope When Tragedy Strikes” 4/25/2015 by Pastor Mike Campagna

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Written by Pastor Mike Campagna @ http://www.aheartforgod.org

Original post @ http://www.aheartforgod.org/2015/04/19/mistaken-identity-and-awful-surprises-how-to-cope/

Mistaken Identity and Awful Surprises: How to Cope When Tragedy Strikes

April 19, 2015 By Mike Campagna

Head On Car Collision
“While he was still speaking, another also came and said [to Job], ‘Your sons and your daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house, and behold, a great wind came from across the wilderness and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young people and they died, and I alone have escaped to tell you.’” (Job 1:18-19)


If there ever was a more tragic case of mistaken identity, I’ve never run across it.

Just when you think you’ve heard it all, the story comes out of the family whose daughter survived a car accident (or so they thought) where four others were killed.

Some five weeks after the crash, the family of Laura VanRyn discovered it really wasn’t her in a coma that they’d been caring for, but one of her friends.

It seems that Whitney Cerak was the one who actually lived while Laura had died.

How could such a mistake be made?

Well, first off, the two girls had an astonishingly similar appearance.

And then secondly, the authorities involved determined that, since the family had made a positive identification on the living girl, no DNA tests needed to be made.


And can you just imagine the feelings of the VanRyn family while at the same time those of the Cerak’s?

You talk about a roller coaster of emotions!


It goes without saying that life is full of surprises both awful and joyous.

So how do we cope when it’s the former that strikes?

The Old Testament story of Job offers us insight. (Job 1:1-22)

Job had some pretty awful things happen to him, you’ll remember.

The Sabeans attacked and stole his donkeys and oxen and killed his servants.

Then, fire fell from the sky and burned up Job’s sheep and some more of his servants.

Next, the Chaldeans raided and stole his camels and slew even more of his servants.

And if that wasn’t bad enough, worst of all, a windstorm arose and struck the house Job’s seven sons and three daughters were in causing it to collapse.

They all died.

(And you thought you were having a bad day.)


But what was Job’s response to all this?

It was both human and Christian.

He tore his robe and shaved his head which represented tremendous grief and heartache.

(It’s a misnomer to think that somehow followers of Jesus ought not feel hurt when something bad happens. It’s only human.)

And then secondly, Job worshiped.

This is how we cope when tragedy strikes.

We don’t deny that we’re hurting.

But then also, along with that, we turn our attention to the Lord and trust Him with what’s happened.

He’s a good God.

He never makes a mistake.

Even when life seems to suggest otherwise, it’s still true.

Are you going through something today?

God’s got the whole world in His hands.

But more than that.

He’s got you and your life there, too.

(Head On Car Collision picture file above is under the GNU Free Documentation License: click here / CC BY 3.0.)

About Mike Campagna

Mike Campagna (affectionately known by some as Pastor Mike) is making the most of web technologies to encourage disciples. A self-proclaimed “twitterholic,” one twitter follower describes him as the “jogging, blogging, tweeting Pastor.” Visits to Pastor Mike’s blog (http://www.aheartforgod.org) number in the hundreds of thousands. His video blogs have been viewed over a half a million times. His day job is content manager/social media specialist for Sugar Pine Realty. Pastor Mike and his family have lived in the Sonora area of California since 1997.

About Godsmanforever

I present posts about God's Word, with a personal focus on how God's grace is received through saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ... Sinners must understand and obey the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ... See this link for more... https://godsmanforever.com/2014/10/26/the-truth-about-sin-10262014-by-bruce-reposted-from-7112013/
This entry was posted in Bible, Catholic, Christ, Christianity, Daily Devotion, Exortation, faith, God, Gospel, Holiness, Hope, Jesus Christ, Love, Mercy, Peace, Praise. Bookmark the permalink.

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