|Announcement from the Colonial Hills website.|
Just this past Saturday (July 27) at around 4:30 p.m., the Lord allowed a bus accident to take Pastor Chad and Courtney Phelps and Mrs. Tonya Weindorf home to enjoy Him in His presence forever (Psalm 16:11; 2 Corinthians 5:8; Hebrews 11:13-16). Dozens of our children and teens were returning from a week of camp when the accident occurred with the teen bus. The Lord spared the lives of all 33 teenagers and 2 children on board and the bus driver, although many are still recovering from significant injuries. God's mercies in this tragedy are too many to recite (Psalm 103), and we magnify His sovereign goodness even in the moment of sorrow (Psalm 119:68; Romans 8:28-30). We believe the Biblical message of good news that God willingly and lovingly sacrificed His own Son, Jesus Christ, upon the cross in order that we might be rescued from the penalty of our sins; and because that same Jesus rose from the dead, we of all people have an assured hope of eternity beyond the grave through His resurrection and life (John 10:21-27). Furthermore, we have heard of God drawing people to Himself in saving faith through this situation, and we're amazed by a God who brings beauty out of ashes (Isaiah 61:1-3). For these reasons and many more, we rejoice, even as we sorrow!
Countless numbers of believers, churches, businesses, and community organizations have sent flowers, expressed prayer, posted strengthening words, and been a ministry of God's grace to our church family at this time. We cannot overstate the encouragement you have been to our church family, and we want to humbly thank you all for your loving and generous kindness, especially to those families directly affected by this accident.
God's grace is being found to be sufficient for our every need (2 Corinthians 12:9-10), and we are grateful for the rich and everlasting hope we have in Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:51-58) â€” since "absent from the body is to be present with the Lord," (2 Corinthians 5:8) we "sorrow not as those who have no hope" (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18), for an everlasting reunion is promised with friends and family who have gone before, and in our midst will be our accomplished and victorious Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ (Revelation 21:1-5, 22-23).