Goodbye for Now, Precious Friend
A Tribute to Betsy Hall
From Stream Founder James Robison:
Many who have followed our ministry have heard me refer many times to my very close friend, Dudley Hall. I shared how he helped me find personal freedom in many areas that literally transformed my life and ministry in multiple ways. Dudley said goodbye to Betsy, his precious wife of more than 50 years, yesterday as she was carried into the eternal presence of our heavenly Father. She moved from the loving arms of Dudley into the loving arms of Jesus. Only the peace He freely offers can sustain any of us when we walk through the valley of the shadow.
When I referenced the impact Dudley made, it must be clearly understood that it was Dudley and Betsy who impacted me and my family so deeply for they were truly one in Christ. Join Betty and me praying that all of us as Christians can become a channel through which our Lord’s transforming truth and love flows continually.
Please read the tribute shared by one precious friend who experienced the transforming power of God’s love flowing freely through Betsy.
I have yet to walk “the path” that many sons and daughters have walked at Tesoro Escondido, the ranch of hidden treasures.
The place where the Lord reveals treasures too costly, too rare, and too valuable to be given lightly. Found only by those who make themselves available and vulnerable to the Lord and to the children of their heart.
But I have found a treasure sweeter than I imagined, not on the cleft of the rocks at the ranch, but rather serving in the kitchen, at the sofa, sitting at the kitchen bar, and around the Word.
She is more precious than silver and what this world has to offer.
When the world system deceived me and darkened my understanding of womanhood … when it asked me … demanded of me … persuaded me … to try to remove the mantle of motherhood and womanhood that has been shackled on me and every woman in a 1000 ways to dark places of the past, in one moment of time, in one conversation, in one second of deep calling out to deep, Betsy’s presence urged me to hang on tight to the beauty that lies beneath its covering.
She did not demand it …
She revealed it!
She demonstrated it!
She made me desire it as a deer pants for water.
This embrace of God’s perfect plan for my life. His covering. His plan. His way.. It is always simply the best way. She gave me eyes to see it.
I can still hear the whistle blow and the train slow before us as she shared with me the love she had for her mother and how precious every memory of her mother is to her. This moment, tear filled and heart felt, it was a vision of the possibility that I did not dare dream was possible. Daring to dream was dangerous. She gave me strength to dream.
She encouraged me to drink deeply the delights of motherhood while my children were young, because you never know what tomorrow will bring.
She gave me a dream to see a future with my soon-to-be adult children, as she loved her own deeply.
In that kitchen, and around that stove I watched her children, her husband, and her grandchildren love, share, and serve each other. She cast a vision that I have been pursing since our first encounter.
She inspired me to find a local mentor to teach the 1000 things she could not teach me with the miles between our homes.
Being all about seeing God glorified, she had no problem with me being influenced by others as long as they pointed me towards Christ.
She gave me a desire to love my husband, as she believed when I could not.
She prayed on the sofa when I was not brave enough to even make the request. When I could not see the possibility she prayed that God would allow me to let go of my past and trust Him to bring life and joy into my marriage.
I could not.
And God did! …Gloriously, miraculously, noticeably, He did as she requested.
And here I am 26 years in to marriage being deeply, madly, and faithfully in love with the husband of my youth.
God answered her request. When I had not faith to ask or believe.
Every year she gave me more and more skills in the kitchen when I came to visit, as we did life over boiling water, cutting boards, and of course brisket.
She brought me joy as we walked the grocery isles and picked out assorted nuts, breads, cheeses and wild Atlantic fish.
She comforted and counseled me after surgery, medical reports and disappointments along the way.
She listened as I unloaded the hurts that come with parenting and letting go. And of course, she granted wisdom and insight.
She helped to ground me in the privilege of motherhood and the beauty of being … being a wife, a woman, a student and a woman.
She, a skilled listener and a practical adviser.
She has my heart because I live daily in the sweet fruit of the work of the Holy Spirit has done in me through Betsy.
I initially came desperately seeking the love and acceptance of a father, in which we all long for in life.
And I found that in bucket loads.
Betsy was the treasure I didn’t know I needed, but her love for me exposed a wound that needed healing and a mind that needed to be reshaped into the woman God had called me to be.
I always longed to live closer, to be nearer, to walk a little longer, and lean in a little further to hear Betsy’s thoughts on a matter.. Especially now, I long to serve and be near.
But God …
During our little yearly visits, God has used her to transform my house into a home.
My marriage into a love affair.
And my relationship with my children to be sweeter than the day before.
I am so thankful for Betsy and for Dudley, Karis, and David for sharing your mom and your wife with so many that needed not only the love of a father, but also needed the love and guidance of a mother.
No, I did not walk the path at the Father Daughter retreat. Nor did I have sweet childhood stories to share around the campfire. But I sure have had the privilege of walking with both Dudley and Betsy throughout my adult life. And this has been one of my greatest treasures.
Finding the Holy Spirit through these two broken vessels and seeing the Lord put himself on display as they yield to Christ.
How the Lord has been shining through these two.
This is the treasure.
I am So thankful!
Praying continually before the throne of Grace for each of you.