Eric Barker, a missionary from Great Britain spent over 50 years in Portugal preaching the Gospel, often under adverse conditions. During World War II, the situation became so critical that he was advised to send his wife and eight children to England for safety. His sister and her three children were also evacuated on the same ship. Although his beloved relatives were forced to leave, he remained behind to carry on the work. On the Lord’s Day following their departure, Pastor Barker stood before his congregation and said, “I’ve just received word that all my family have arrived safely home!” He then proceeded with the service as usual. Later, the full meaning of his words became known to his people. He had been handed a wire just before the meeting informing him that a submarine had torpedoed the ship and everyone on board had drowned. He knew that because all were believers they had reached a more “desired haven.” Although overwhelmed with grief, he managed by the grace of God to live above the circumstances and to stay on the firing line for Jesus. The knowledge that his family was enjoying the bliss of Heaven comforted his heart.
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