From: THAD JONES
Sent: Sat, February 15, 2003 8:33:31 AM
Subject: Re: The Captain of Columbia
----- Original Message -----From:To: Thad & NinaSent: Tuesday, February 11, 2003 5:00 PMSubject: FW: The Captain of ColumbiaTHAD- I'M NOT SURE THIS WILL MAKE IT INTO THE GENERAL MEDIA COVERAGE.----- Original Message -----Sent: 2/11/2003 1:54:48 PMSubject: The Captain of Columbia
In a message dated 2/10/03 6:47:42 PM Pacific Standard Time, ____________ writes:
I had the privilege of attending a Steve Green concert on the night of
Feb.1, just 12 hours after the loss of Columbia and her crew of
What a surprise to learn that Steve Green (a Christian artist) was a
close friend of Rick Husband's, the astronaut who was selected to be
captain for this mission. Their friendship began a number of years ago
when Rick and his wife stood in line to meet Steve after a concert in
Houston. As Rick told Steve how much he enjoyed his music, Rick's wife
whispered to Steve that Rick was an astronaut. Steve said he (Steve)
made a big deal about that and soon the people were lined up to ask
Rick for an autograph instead of Steve! Thus, their friendship began.
Steve was in attendance for Rick's first shuttle la! unch several years
ago and was also in attendance for this launch. He sang both times at
pre-launch receptions. He said the reception for the Columbia launch
was very Christ-honoring, and that there were many unbelievers in
attendance. Steve described Rick as a quiet, unassuming man who was,
however, very vocal about his faith. He said Rick did not miss an
opportunity to give glory to God and mentioned that when Mission
Control said it was a beautiful day for a launch, Rick responded with,
"The Lord has given us a perfect day!" A suit technician shared the
following story with Steve. He said that after the astronauts suit up
they walk down a hallway and then open a door to "face the press!"
Rick stopped the crew before they opened the door and said he wanted to
pray for them. Later the technicians talked about this and one said
that in all his! years he had never heard of a captain praying for and
with his crew.
The spouses of the crew each get to pick a song for them to wake up to
one of the mornings they're in space. Rick's wife selected "God of
Wonders" by Steve Green. Steve played a tape for us of Rick
communicating with Mission Control after the song was played. The
conversation went something like this: Mission Control - "Good
morning. That song was for Rick. It was 'God of Wonders' by Steve
Green." Rick - "Good morning. Thank you. We can really appreciate
the lyrics of that song up here. We look out the window and see that
God truly is a God of wonders!" (Unfortunately, we probably won't hear
that one on the news.) Steve also shared part of an e-mail he received
from Rick, transmitted from outer space! Did you know that was
possible? I did! n't! Anyway, Rick wrote about how overwhelming it was
to see God's vast creation from space. He said he had never cried
while exercising before, but peddling on the bike and looking out the
window at God's incredible creation brought tears to his eyes.
Steve also shared that he had been in Texas for a concert about a week
before coming here. While there, Steve and his "crew" spent the day
with Rick's wife, Evelyn, and their two children and also Mike
Anderson's family. Mike was also aboard Columbia. During the concert
that evening, Steve had the two women stand and he asked the audience
to pray with him for these women while their husbands were in space.
It was encouraging to hear Steve say that there were at least three
astronauts (including Rick and Mike) aboard the Columbia who were
believers in Jesus.
It was a moving concert and a welc! ome surprise to learn all these
things. What a blessing to know that at least three of these
astronauts loved Jesus! Steve did not name the third person or mention
if there was a family left behind. But two of the families, at least,
will be relying on God to carry them through this and will have
opportunity to share God's love with families/friends of the other
astronauts. Steve mentioned that before President Bush talked to the
families, they had formed a circle and were praying.
Steve was even able to share with us pictures of Rick at different
stages of his life, his career and family. He and Rick's wife had put
this together to be set to one of Steve's songs. They had done it
awhile back for some special event. Steve had it with him and shared
it with us. He also gave us all a challenge from Rick's life. He said
that as! tronauts lead extremely busy lives, and he (Steve) had been
impressed with Rick's commitment to discipling his two children. Steve
asked us to think about if our lives were to end tomorrow and there
would be no more opportunity for us to disciple our kids. Would we be
happy with what we had done, or would we have regrets?
I'm guessing, from the pictures Steve showed, that Rick's son was
around 5 years old and his daughter 10. I may be off, but that gives
you an idea. They certainly are not close to adulthood. Rick made 34
devotionals, by video, before he left on the Columbia. There were 17
for his daughter and 17 for his son, one for each day he was to be
gone. So each day his daughter and son had their own "devotion with
Dad" by video. What treasures they will be to his children! Thank
you, God, for leading Rick to do that!
Well, I think I've given you every bit of information Steve gave us.
It was certainly an encouragement and comfort to hear these things. I
wanted to pass it on to bless others and to help you know how to pray
for these families in the days ahead. God IS at work in His world! To
Him belongs all glory!
Thanks for reading. Feel free to pass this along to others.
Singing God's Praise by C.H. Spurgeon "And these are the singers . . . they were employed in that work day and night."
Well was it so ordered in the temple that the sacred chant never ceased: for evermore did the singers praise the Lord, whose mercy endureth for ever. As mercy did not cease to rule either by day or by night, so neither did music hush its holy ministry. My heart, there is a lesson sweetly taught to thee in the ceaseless song of Zion's temple, thou too art a constant debtor, and see thou to it that thy gratitude, like charity, never faileth. God's praise is constant in heaven, which is to be thy final dwelling-place, learn thou to practise the eternal hallelujah. Around the earth as the sun scatters his light, his beams awaken grateful believers to tune their morning hymn, so that by the priesthood of the saints perpetual praise is kept up at all hours, they swathe our globe in a mantle of thanksgiving, and girdle it with a golden belt of song.The Lord always deserves to be praised for what He is in Himself, for His works of creation and providence, for His goodness towards His creatures, and especially for the transcendent act of redemption, and all the marvellous blessing flowing therefrom. It is always beneficial to praise the Lord; it cheers the day and brightens the night; it lightens toil and softens sorrow; and over earthly gladness it sheds a sanctifying radiance which makes it less liable to blind us with its glare.Have we not something to sing about at this moment? Can we not weave a song out of our present joys, or our past deliverances, or our future hopes? Earth yields her summer fruits: the hay is housed, the golden grain invites the sickle, and the sun tarrying long to shine upon a fruitful earth, shortens the interval of shade that we may lengthen the hours of devout worship. By the love of Jesus, let us be stirred up to close the day with a psalm of sanctified gladness.