Tim Addington #2

  • June 2, 2011
  • #7589

Joni interviews TJ Addington, the Executive Director of Reach Global, about God’s faithfulness and the power of prayer through his heath difficulties.

JONI: Hi, I’m Joni Eareckson Tada and welcome to Joni and Friends. And I have back at the microphone today my good friend, TJ Addington, Executive Director of ReachGlobal, that’s the Evangelical Free Church America’s international mission outreach. The last time we met, TJ, we were talking about the enormous package of health problems that you had to deal with coming back from an overseas trip: multiple infections, MRSA, that was not easy.

TIM: No and there was a second time in Bangkok where I was pulled off the plane and ended up in the hospital again on a ventilator. Frankly, I didn’t think I was going to survive that one.

JONI: Wow! Well I want you to know that I had several of your friends calling me ‘You gotta pray for Tim!’ We did and it is so good to see this happy smile on your face. Tim, you must have been lying there in the hospital wrestling – you’re a pastor, you’re an author, you’re an educator – about how and to what extent God could be sovereign over such a mess of physical hardship and hospitalization and infections, and on and on. What were you thinking?

TIM: Joni, one of the great gifts of that hospital stay was that I learned that it is a great gift to come to the place where you have nothing to trust in by God, because there comes a time when everything is stripped away. I lay there in Bangkok, my son signing medical consents; my wife was in the states. I thought I would not survive and I had to grapple with the question: first of all, is God good all the time, and secondly what do I do? And I settled on the fact that there were only two things I could do: that is acknowledge His goodness and the phrase ‘Fear not, I am with you’ just kept running through my mind and I said God, ‘I trust you, you are good and whatever happens I’m okay’.

JONI: I’m so glad to hear you say that because sometimes many people going through a disability, long hospitalization, long bed rest tend to think they have missed the divine plan A and now there illness has forced them to go with divine plan B. Speak to that a second.

TIM: Joni, God does not have an A and a B plan. He only has an A plan.

JONI: Aren’t you glad for that?

TIM: And you know God has changed my life fairly significantly but it is amazing, he slowed my body down but He didn’t slow my mind down and out of this has come more time to write and influence folks through that avenue. He is sovereign and we simply need to trust and celebrate that sovereignty.

JONI: Absolutely! I love that word “celebrate”. So many people are frightened of God’s sovereignty. What’s He going to do to me next? Oh, my goodness, if I’ve been hospitalized and bed ridden this long, what’s going to happen in the future? But His sovereignty is not only a cause for celebration; I think it is a cause for comfort.

TIM: Absolutely! It’s the best place to live; it’s the only place to live.

JONI: Wedged in the middle of His will. Well, Tim, I want to thank you so much for how your experience with these physical hardships has opened up the opportunity for a new and growing partnership between Joni and Friends and the Evangelical Free Church of America. Like what happened in Uganda!

TIM: Yes, training of pastors, and wheelchair ministry; equipping our national leaders for ministering to those with disabilities. It’s very exciting!

JONI: And I’m so grateful that so many members of the Evangelical Free Church of America often serve as our short term missionaries at our Family Retreats. Thumbs up and we’re hoping we will see more of that in the future. How about it?

TIM: You will, Joni.

JONI: All right. Until next time, I’m Joni Eareckson Tada and you are listening to Joni and Friends.

© Joni and Friends

Have You Been Encouraged?

  • Your email address will not be published with your comment or be displayed anywhere on our website.
  • We do not rent or sell your personal information to other companies or individuals.
  • For more information please see our privacy policy.