If you are new here, my Dad stepped into heaven on Saturday, Aug. 22, 2009 after having an unexpected heart attack.
When I think about my Daddy, I remember his amazing smile, sense of humor, contagious laugh and overall joy of life. He devoted his life to God and his family. He has been the best father I could have ever asked for, always there with advice and love and practical help. He then moved into the role of Papa to my children and they were close with him. We were privileged to have lived next door to my parents for the past 10 years. He would often stop by just to fill up his love tank with the hugs he would receive and freely give. I've never lost someone so close to me before, and my grief goes deep because selfishly, I wanted my Dad to be a part of my children's lives as they grew up as well as mine.
My nephew, Logan, couldn't sleep after receiving the dreaded phone call at 3am. Being young, he turned to the computer for some comfort. After Googling my Dad's name (Bob Neulen) he found an excerpt from a sermon and it revealed a legacy that goes far beyond his family - this is the kind of legacy we all need to leave behind. While it is long, I encourage you to read it. The message is clear and strong, we all need to let our lights shine because you never know who you are touching.
On August 27, 2006, a man named Allan Green was the guest speaker at Can Creek Baptist Church in NC. The message was called, "Living in God's House." Here is the excerpt that talks about my father, Bob Neulen.
There is a second way to live in God’s House: give your home, your apartment, your room, or wherever you happen to live, to God. Invite Him to take ownership! Bear in mind that when God owns your home He might decide to do something with it that you hadn’t expected, but I can promise you from personal experience that it will be exciting. Your home will become miracle territory. 1 Cor 16:19 The churches of Asia greet you. Aquila and Priscilla greet you heartily in the Lord, with the church that is in their house.
Chris and I owe our salvation to one such home. In 1971 I knew my co-worker Bob Neulen was a pretty straight-laced guy. He wasn’t offensive, and he had a great sense of humor, but he never engaged in profane conversation or malicious gossip. If the subject came up, he would tell you straight up that he was born again. He surprised me one day by inviting Chris and I to his birthday party, so we got a sitter for Jeni and went.
It was an interesting experience. Bob’s wife Jean was as sweet as Bob was nice, and all their other guests were friends from their church. No alcohol was served. Nobody smoked. We drank soda, swapped stories about our children, and now and then they all talked about the miracles God was doing in their families and the church. Chris and I felt like we had entered the Twilight Zone or something, – which of course, we had – and we liked it! Bob and Jean’s house was miracle territory. A few weeks later, they got to see the miracle God had planned all along when Chris and I answered an altar call and met Jesus for ourselves. The rest as they say, is history. Now our home is miracle territory – something amazing happens at least once a week, unless Chris has been really busy in prayer, in which case it may be every day.
This church is filled with homes like the Neulen’s, where God’s ministry proceeds along from day to day, week to week; where His Spirit empowers marriages and the relationships between parents and children; where God’s love flows out into the community in hospitality and generosity. I don’t say this in with any sense of pride, because it is God’s work, but the truth is, we have blessed homes! Miracles are happening in our homes because God lives there.
May you and your house become miracle territory. Thank you all for your prayers they have helped us get through this very difficult time. The viewing is on Tuesday and the funeral will be on Wed. I have already put up a T.T. post for Thursday for those of you who participate. God bless each one of you.