By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector
BOLIVAR — For more than 26 youth and sponsors from Parrans Chapel Baptist Church in Bolivar, the night of March 9 could have turned into tragedy. But God intervened.
One of the two church buses, driven by pastor Josh Clark, was driving through storms on I-840 between Fairview and Dickson, when a gust of wind caused the bus to lose control and hydroplane on the wet pavement.
Fortunately, Clark said, he was able to steer the bus, which was on loan from a sister church (Dixie Hills Baptist in Bolivar), over to the median where it flipped on its side, but did not roll over. Twelve of the 26 members of the team were on his bus. Other than minor cuts and bruises and two students who suffered concussions, there were no major injuries, Clark reported.
“God was watching out for us,” the pastor affirmed. He noted that if the bus had not reached the median which slowed it down, the bus could have rolled over several times, causing possibly more serious injuries.
After two weeks, everyone is “okay,” Clark said, noting that one student is still in “concussion protocol.”
Clark said the youth group was returning from a student leadership conference in Chattanooga prior to the accident. He said the central message of the conference was “to take advantage of the moments God gives us.”
Since the accident, “we have had daily conversations about taking advantage of the moments that God gives us,” Clark said.
“I have already seen that taking place,” he affirmed. Clark told of one student who shared the gospel with a nurse in a local emergency room following the accident and another student who witnessed to a patient in a doctor’s waiting room the following week.
“A lot of other positive things have happened as well,” Clark observed. “Please pray that these students would continue to learn, mature and go as God leads them.”