17-Year-Old Sarah Harmening wasn’t exactly feeling it while riding on a bus en route to a short term mission trip in Africa last week.
“I was just sitting here on the bus, feeling a little sad. I guess because I’m going to be gone so long and I was a little uncomfortable,” she wrote in her journal.
That’s when she decided to read her Bible, and it changed her entire perspective. “We get to participate in his divine nature! I mean, how awesome is that? So mostly, I was just reminded of why I’m here and that God has called me here and he’s do so for a reason. So I know he’s going to do incredible things.”
Moments after she finished writing, the bus she was traveling in got into a violent collision and flipped over, ultimately claiming her life. The journal entry provides a window into the soul of a teenager with a very strong faith, and is providing her grieving parents and friends with some comfort in a difficult time, knowing just how close she was to God before passing.
Mount Zion Baptist Church's Sarah Harmening lost her life (on earth) in today's bus accident but she left us all with a…
Here’s the text of her beautiful entry:
“I was just sitting here on the bus, feeling a little sad. I guess because I’m going to be gone so long and I was a little uncomfortable. Then I decided to read my Bible. I prayed and opened up to 1 Peter 5 and 2 Peter 1. Pretty much everything I read applies to me now. It talked about watching over the flock entrusted to you, which would be my little buddies in Botswana, humbling yourself which I will need to do (and that also means being a little uncomfortable), it talked about the devil prowling about like a lion seeking whom he may devour, which he will especially be doing on this mission trip, and how we need to be alert and of sober mind, and lastly, how we get to participate in his divine nature! I mean, how awesome is that? So mostly, I was just reminded of why I’m here and that God has called me here and he’s done so for a reason. So I know he’s going to do incredible things.”
The message shows just how close a relationship Sarah had with the Lord. Her writings and the words of her parents tell the story of a remarkable teenager, one mature beyond her years. With all the crazy things teens text each other these days, here’s one of her final (and prophetic) text messages she sent to her friends and family not long before she would die in the tragic crash.
“We are like a wisp of smoke. We are only here for a moment and it’s not about us. Life is not about us. It’s about God, who is eternal, so I want to dedicate the one moment I’m here completely and entirely to him.”
That’s the kind of posture most normally seen in a more seasoned Christian. Sarah’s parents decided to speak to the press, read her last journal entry, and make a plea for faith.
“We asked to have the opportunity to speak because our daughter Sara was a gift that was given on December 20th, 1999. And she loved the Lord with a love that tangible. And I know you guys in the media don’t like to hear a lot about that, but I hope you’ll listen to it, because it’s what she lived and breathed for.”
Mom fought back tears as she read the last journal entry her very daughter would ever write.
What a powerful example Sarah has left for us all, to not waste a single moment of this gift of life, and to always be looking up to Him, and outward to help others. Prayers for everyone involved.