The “Amazing” Mr. Frank Atchley 

Frank Atchley, was one of the most humble people you will ever meet. I was fortunate to be one of his friends for almost 25 years. He was a quiet man of unbelievable strength and integrity. Even in his older years, he consistently helped out in so many ministries of our church, I hesitate to mentioned them because I would surely leave something out. He endured a lot of illness, watched his wife Mary struggle a long time wrestling with an incurable disease, yet he never complained  about much of anything except that he wished he could do more to help people. I guess if you could sum up his life it would be that He loved God and people. Nothing else really seemed to matter to him. When most people ( probably me included) would like to just give up under pressure, give out when exhausted, Frank just kept going on serving God and quietly helping people.
I remember one night several years ago,  we ate dinner together at McDonald ‘s on the way to the Hearts On Fire YOUTH Conference in Gatlinburg Tennessee , yes that is right…a YOUTH Conference! Frank volunteered there with helping young people who made decisions and prayed  with them. This is one of many things he did in helping others find the same hope in God that transformed his life many years ago. He was a friend that was always praying for you and had a genuine interest in you well being. I marvel at all the lives he has touched through the years…
During our dinner at McDonald’s that night, he reminisced about how God had so blessed his life. That night he also shared with me one of his secrets about his faith…”you grow spiritually by getting involved in the study of God’s Word and applying it by helping others”. So simple…yet so true. Why else would a person way past 80 years old, volunteer to work  at a Youth Conference? What is even more amazing was how God used him that night. At the invitation time at the conference, a lot of people came forward to receive Christ as their Lord and Savior. Among them was a young married couple that were chaperones of a youth group. In a crowded room they ended up talking to Frank, who led them to the Lord. They they asked him about advice for their marriage. He shared some of the best advice I have ever heard from his own marriage of many years with his wife Mary. He shared with them the importance of commitment to each other and the Lord, getting involved in a  church, spending quality time with each other, the importance of praying for each other and several other things. Heaven’s gain is our loss. We will miss him, but his impact upon me and many others will continue to influence us in a positive way forever.

20121103-231354.jpg

Leave your thoughts:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s