Finding Hope - Bert
Every young man dreams of starting a business. Bert made that happen in 1960; starting an HVAC business. At first it was just him, but soon he added three more employees including one son. His other sons were part of the business in the summertime.
In a weather dependent business, mild winters and cool summers are dangerous. 1990 was such a year. Bert came back from a week's vacation with his family to realize that he would be unable to make payroll. Putting his house up as collateral for a bank line of credit, he had to face the reality of losing, not only the business, but his house and valuable employees.
In Bert's own words, " This brought me to my knees. I discovered that was a good way to speak to my heavenly Father. I prayed Lord, if it would glorify your name for me to lose the business and house, then let it happen. But, if it would glorify your name for the business to continue, that would be great”
Within an hour a customer called and wanted the immediate installation of the "most efficient heating and cooling system." That marked the turning point for his business and faith. Both have grown since. The business now has 24 employees and is more diversified to handle seasonal deviations. Bert's willingness to explore and share his faith has also grown.
When Bert accepted the fact that his prayer made a difference in his business, he also accepted the responsibility of sharing The Word and helping others. He became receptive to listening to the problems of others. He would pray with them and noticed that it made them calmer.
He had people contact him after their prayer session to say that things have been better since they prayed together. All believers have to realize that God answers all prayers but not always in way that you would expect.
God put an apartment supervisor into Bert's path. He learned that this man had stage 4 cancer and was seeking the truth by reading the bible. Bert was embarrassed that he did nothing at first. He didn't know how to handle a terminal case.
In Bert's Words, "The next time we met, he was reading Luke and said he was not doing well. God had given me a second chance with him. I went thru Billy Grahams “ Steps to peace with God” with him, showed him the plan of salvation and he became a child of God. Two weeks later, he was gone to be with God.
I believe God was saying this to me “ If you see something that you or your son cannot fix from your toolbox, then tell them about Me and my Son. That will glorify my name”
Age allows us to evolve in our financial, social and spiritual lives. Bert's story personifies that. In our youth we use our apparent invincibility to fool us into self-assuredness. If we are lucky, life teaches us that we need God and to be responsible to others.
Prayer may not save every business or every life, but prayer always works. You just need to be wise enough to accept that the human solutions you prayed for aren't always the best. God sees the bigger picture and always supplies the answer.
- Jim Randazzo
Finding Hope within a Community of Faith
Never give up on God even when it seems hopeless