A Death. A Message of Hope. An Opportunity

There will be a pretty cool event in Seattle on June 12, 2008 – Consider 2008 with Shawn McDonald and Ben Rector. It’s even better when you know the back story…

On March 17, 2007, twenty-six year-old Kimberly Evanger Raney was killed in a bicycling accident while riding with her husband Patrick. Kim grew up at our church. Her parents are my friends. Her father is a fellow elder. And everyone who knows the family was deeply affected knowing the closeness of this family to one another. Truly a tragic time … yet out of that came a message of hope that continues even today. Kim’s brother David says, that starting with the phone call about her death,

In that instant my heart was shattered with disbelief and pain. My reaction was met with the repeated screams of “NO, NO, NO.” Over, and over, and over, I pleaded with the Lord for this to not be real. It was in this moment that an amazing thing happened; in that deep and dark place my Lord and Savior refused to let go of me. Instead, He grasped tighter and in an indescribable moment He wiped the grief from my mind for a short moment, covering me with an unearthly peace and a heightened perception. It was as though I was in a vacuum and all else was cleared away. In that place I heard a message from my sister, spoken to me through the Holy Spirit. Many words filled my head, but there was one very pure and simple focus. She told me to tell her friends and family to CONSIDER, to just tell them to Consider Jesus, not wait, but to Consider now.

As I stood for her memorial in our Seattle church in front of nearly 2,000 fellow mourners, I tried my best to deliver [the] message. As I struggled to convey what I had been asked to say, with the pain overwhelming me, I stopped, closed my eyes, and asked God for help. Again the Lord grabbed hold of me, replacing my inadequacy with His strength. He proceeded to fill that sanctuary with His presence and delivered through my breaths the a most powerful and simple call to Consider Him.

The power of His presence that day touched everyone in that place, and because of it lives were changed. Many Considered for the first time. Because the majority of my sister’s friends were not believers, and for that matter much of Seattle, the message cut deep.

As the months passed after Kim’s memorial service I began to hear the Lord telling me to continue to build on what He had begun that day. So, for the last 4 months I have been working with my family and friends to plan a concert inspired by the message of Consider. We are simply calling it Consider 2008″.

Check out the MySpace page for more information. Proceeds from the event will benefit the “Kim Evanger Raney Foundation”, dedicated to helping the underprivileged children of the greater Seattle area.

It is worth considering …


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