19 April 1995
At 9 AM this morning in Oklahoma City I heard what seemed to be a large explosion. I ran out to the street and could see a thick column of smoke rising from the area of the explosion. Life Issues is a group that is renovating a 5-story warehouse here in OKC to be a Life Education Center and resource center for Christians in Eastern Europe. The building is half a mile away from where the explosion happened. We had minor damage. One window broke out and the scaffold collapsed in the front of the building.
20 April 1995
Into the war zone and back
The next day a plea was made for climbing equipment for rescue workers. We had some rope and climbing equipment that I decided to deliver to the address given on the news that day. When I arrived I was asked by a Red Cross volunteer to get a pass for entry into the secure area. Immediately after that I was told a golf cart loaded with supplies was going that direction and I should ride with the Red Cross volunteers. Soon we were heading in the direction of the Federal Building and could see the devastation on all the surrounding blocks. After finding the firefighters who were ecstatic to get the equipment, we circled around to the west side of the Federal Building. While waiting for the Red Cross volunteers to return I could now see firsthand what devastation had taken place. Shortly after looking around I was asked if I would be able to spend some time there working with supplies. I said that I would and found myself in the one-story garage of the Federal Building for the next eight hours, putting batteries in flashlights, unwrapping goggles and dust masks, assembling hardhats, arranging first aid equipment, handing out gloves, shovels, bolt cutters, buckets, bodybags, drinking water, sledge hammers and countless other items to the rescue workers was our task. Throughout that night there were surges of rescuers from all over the United States; Sacramento, Riverside, Phoenix, New York, Washington, D.C just to name a few. As the workers came in they were fresh from a meal or some rest. They were clean, energetic and fresh. When they returned after hours of digging by hand through rubble, concrete, steel re-bar they were dirty and worn out, expressions of frustration, fatigue and helplessness on their faces. As I looked around I felt that God had put me there for a few hours to assist and encourage.
One sight that I'll never forget is that of a child's rocking chair with one rocker missing and several fractures in the chair itself. I couldn't help but think of the innocent children all around the world that have died in Yugoslavia, Ethiopia, Rwanda, Japan, and here in America from explosions, wars, ethnic violence, child abuse and abortion. These are the victims of violence that will never play with their family again, never see the sunshine or a moonlit night. Never again!
Students of Bible prophecy see that it is but a taste of things to come. In the first three and a half years following the rapture of the believers on the earth there will be relative peace, as a treaty is made between Israel and the leaders of the revived Roman empire. The last three and a half years will be characterized by unprecedented violence and destruction when over half of the world's population will die in "the great winepress of the wrath of God" (Revelation 14:19). Jesus said: For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should be no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those day's shall be shortened. (Matthew 24:21,22) This will be followed by the return of Christ to the earth with His Bride, the Church for a thousand year rule and reign. This is the time for believers everywhere to preach the gospel and warn people of the wrath to come and how they can escape it.