Start Letting God Refine Your Life
When a hijacked jetliner slammed into the Pentagon on 9-11, 2001, LTC Brian Birdwell was standing directly in its path. Because he had made a trip to the restroom, his life was miraculously spared. If he had been at his desk, he would have been killed instantly. Suddenly life was forever changed for Brian and his wife, Mel.
Brian’s rescue from the burning building was a miracle in itself. That he survived life-threatening burns to over 60 percent of his body, he attributes only to the fact that God has a purpose for his life.
Yet out of the suffering have come opportunities for him to communicate his faith in ways not possible outside of walking the very lonely path of pain and near-despair. Through their outreach called Face the Fire Ministries they have shared their lives and have touched many people, including other burn victims as well as servicemen and women and the facilities that provide their care. Through the news media they have told their story of God’s sustaining power and encouraged many.
Brian asks, “Would I have chosen this path? And the answer is easily no. Yet,” he continues, “I can also answer yes. If what Mel and I have experienced causes even one person to make a decision to become a Christ follower, then it was worth it.”
One of the chapters in the Bible that comforted Brian and Mel during their ordeal was Psalm 33, which says, “But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love, to deliver them from death and keep them alive in famine.” (vss. 18-20). Brian and Mel Birdwell demonstrate that God is faithful—even through times of disaster and suffering.
 LTC (RET) Brian Birdwell and Mel Birdwell with Ginger Kolbaba, REFINED BY FIRE, Corsicana, TX: (The B & B Media Group, Inc., dba The Barnabas Agency, 2004).