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The Perfect Sunset
"I was standing on a mountain bald at 5,000 feet above sea level when I saw the most beautiful and perfect sunset. With no trees to hinder my view, I saw the majesty of Creation. There were more colors and shades than the human eye could behold. In the west, where the sun was slowly setting, the colors were bright and full of youth. There was a blend of red and pink around the bright glowing core of the falling sun. The reddish-pink eventually bled off into a burnt-orange to the north. To the south was a true miracle of Creation. The southern colors were the opposite of the northern colors, but equally majestic. The sight of the contrasting colors was like seeing God Himself. I will always remember that day. That was the day I stood with the angels."
Benjamin Andrew Quillen
Friday, January 15, 1999
Mr. Scott's English IV Block 3 Class
Without any warning, and for reasons known only to God, Ben experienced his homegoing one and one-half days after he wrote these words. When he penned them, Benjamin was not aware that Saturday's glorious sunset was indeed his last, nor did he realize he was actually writing words of solace to his own family and friends. We received this essay from his school, William Blount High, Thursday, January 28th, directly answering prayers for reassurance that week. An autopsy's only finding was an enlarged heart, cause unknown.
Again, Ben's life confirms his Christian witness. His family, deeply grieving for his joy-filled spirit, have had their prayers of re-assurance answered day-by-day since Ben's passing. Reading the cards we continue to receive which record his witness to other precious souls for Jesus, the Christ. Ben is alive and well because he believed that the Bible is God's Word - he read it multiple times each day - and he trusted in the one true God and His only Son's atoning death and resurrection. Given the suddeness of the end of his earthly ministry, our great joy is knowing that if there ever was a young man ready to meet Jesus, it is Ben. God's grace overwhelmed him because he knew he was a sinner in need of a savior. And for that we are eternally thankful. We know, by the certainty of God's promises, where he is now. One day - and very soon - his family will see Ben face-to-face.
All of us will have a final sunset and for some it will be tonight. Ben's sudden departure confronts us with the truth of this life - it's brief, very brief indeed, compared to eternity. Ben often spoke of his concern for his teachers and classmates, that they hear the unbelievably good news of God's grace and would turn to God and put their trust only in the person, Christ Jesus. For Jesus is the only true hope for a broken humanity. Only He could secure eternal life for believers by reconciling them to God. We hope and pray that the true gospel of Jesus Christ will be real and just as strong to you and your family as it is to Ben and his family. Read Colossians 2 - 3 especially verses 3:12-17 which describe Ben.
We are thankful for your prayers and support. We hope that you will visit soon. Please pray for us and pray that Christ will reap a harvest through the young life of one of His disciples. Isaiah 57:1 helps explain one reason why God took him so early.
Al, Lois and Chris Quillen