Wednesday, October 10, 2007

From Family

This area is for family members to post notes and letters about Jim Tozer. Click the "From Family" link to add your Letter. Please add your mailing address and email at the bottom if you wish.

5 comments:

Robert Frederick said...

When I talked to Rick Hurley, he told me of the significant impact that Jim Tozer had on him and every member of his family. I am sure that there are hundreds of stories like it that need to be told. We made this site so that you have a chance to tell them to his wife, children, grandchildren, friends, and the generations to come.

Bob Frederick
404 Homewood Dr.
Huntsville, AL 35801
Son-in-Law

Robert Frederick said...

(This is a copy of a letter that I wrote at Christmas 2006)

December 25, 2006

James R. Tozer
139 Ada Dr.
Owens Crossroads, AL 35763

Dear Jim:

This year at Christmastime it seemed hard to get you a present. This has been as season for you to free yourself from many of the things that you have been collecting over the years. So I am giving you something that will not take too much space. It is this simple letter.

It is the best time to reflect on the things that you have given me that cannot be lost or given away. As a father your have given me the gift of a beautiful daughter who knows God and thinks of others before she thinks of herself. You and Vivian provided her an encouraging, stable, and Godly home to grow up. You also raised a wonderful son who is a great encourager to me and the girls. Fathers must often wonder privately how things will turn out for their children and what things they could have done differently. You have done everything perfectly and I am grateful for the fruits of your labors. You children have chosen good paths and made wise decisions.

This heritage is now bearing more fruit with my children as the next generation is growing up as disciples of Jesus Christ. I pray that I can be as faithful as you are and that many, many Godly generations will emerge before our eyes.

Sincerely,


Bob Frederick

Lynn (Tozer) Frederick said...

remarks from untsville Alabama Memorial Service

There is so much that I could say about my Dad, but I would like to share three things that stand out to me right now.

First is how much I appreciated and depended upon his loving encouragement. Dad always had something positive and uplifting to say to me. He repeatedly praised me as a wonderful daughter, wife, and mother. I didn’t usually think I deserved the praise but it sure made me feel good to know he thought so well of me.

Second, I admired how well Dad handled his illness. He sought good medical guidance. He accepted the limitations of the treatment. He never complained and toward the end I told him how proud I was of him and his sweet spirit through the trial of his illness.

Last and most important to me was to be able to see his faith in and love for the Lord. Dad loved to read his Bible and he spent hours reading and meditating. He always had scripture verses he was learning. It gave me great joy and comfort to know my dad loved God’s Word so much. I saw Dad’s faith in God clearly at the end of his life when he could say quite humbly that he was ready to go be with the Lord.

I am so very thankful to God to have had such a wonderful earthly father who helped me to know my Heavenly Father.

Lynn (Tozer) Frederfick
Huntsville, AL
lynn80@arilion.com

Robert Frederick said...

Comments from Huntsville,Alabama Memorial Service

My father-in-law, Jim Tozer was a dynamic individual. His wife Vivian has said that if he was not a preacher, he would have been a great politician. We could very easily be standing here today remembering governor Jim Tozer or the honorable senator James Tozer. If you met him, you immediately knew that he was an extraordinary person.

While politics is an honorable service, the Lord had different things in mind for Jim. He called him into his kingdom to preach and lead at a critical time in our nation’s history to stand firm on God’s Word and to disciple men and women to have a vibrant faith in Jesus Christ through the local church.

Over a year ago, he stood in this pulpit and preached a wonderful sermon. He was a prophet telling us in simple terms to take the time to invite someone to church. He told us to notice people, take an interest in them, and invite them to church.

He practiced what he preached as two young men, visitors to our church, sat in that same service. They worked at the desk on night shift at the local hotel where he and Vivian were staying. Jim learned their names, befriended them, and invited them to service. One of these young men later invited him to attend his college graduation with his family at Alabama A. & M, which he enjoyed doing.

Jim was moved home last week from the hospital and his family cared for him with the assistance of Hospice Family Care and an angel named Wanda on night shift. The days were very difficult, but the best memory for me was a moment when all the family surrounded his bedside. I had my 6-year old Anna in my arms. His tired eyes stared into the distance blankly through half shut eyelids.

When he sensed we were there, his spirit rallied and life rushed into his piercing brown eyes. He lifted his head, raised his finger and pointed at each one of us as if counting. In the best voice that he could, he whispered, “This is nice.” He let his head rest back onto the pillow.

At a time when it is easy to second guess all the medical decisions and missed opportunities of the past weeks, this is a special moment that God gave us. I believe that any husband and father in this sanctuary would be fully satisfied if that were the only moment they could have with thier family at the door of eternity.

As a final expression of our heart to Jim, I invite daughters Laura and Rebekah to come to the platform to play a song. When they moved to town last December, we would play for Jim and Vivian. He loved it. He would bring people to our house and make them endure us playing song after song. He would praise us with such enthusiasm. The playing of familiar hymns and songs was comforting to him and I think symbolized a special cohesiveness of our family’s faith in Jesus Christ to him. Laura picked this song to play for their 50th wedding anniversary in June this year. It comes from Psalm 119:105 “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” We hope it will be a comfort to you. Please hear it though the ears of a proud grandfather.

Robert Frederick said...

Bob Frederick Comments from the W. Lafayette Service Octobert 17. 2007.

My father-in-law, Jim Tozer was a dynamic individual. His wife Vivian has said that if he was not a preacher, he would have been a great politician. We could very easily be standing here today remembering governor Jim Tozer or the honorable senator James Tozer. If you met him, you immediately knew that he was an extraordinary person. While politics is an honorable service, the Lord had different things in mind for Jim. He called him into his kingdom to preach and lead at a critical time in our nation’s history, to stand firm on God’s Word, and to disciple men and women to have a vibrant faith in Jesus Christ through the local church.
Being in this sanctuary brings several special memories to me about Jim Tozer. You see, from where I sit, this sanctuary was like another room in the Tozer’s house. A large Living room where the family was with friends and significant family events took place.
The first time is saw Jim Tozer was at a funeral over 25 years ago. Charlotte Van den Bosh, the wife of a dear friend of mine, Dr. Walter Van den Bosh had died. I remember a positive energetic man standing before the participants with kind and personal words of encouragement.
After being involved in several wonderful para-church ministries in college, I began to realize that my time at Purdue University was going to be significant. I prayed to the Lord to help me find a local church where I could be encouraged by mature believer, held accountable for my own personal growth, and use my spiritual gifts. It was the beginning of an academic year and several organizations had booths on campus for students to visit. I met a man named parks Wilson from the Worldwide Discipleship Association. I asked him if he could recommend a good church, and he said in his high-pitched Southern voice, “I have visited Covenant Presbyterian, and I’m fix’en to joint that place.”
That was enough for me. I came in the sanctuary and praised God to wonderful music and heard a wonderful sermon. After the service I met Jim at the front of the sanctuary. And I met a remarkable woman at the back of the sanctuary named Lynn that same day.
It would be over a year later that Lynn’s brother David invited me to their home for Easter Lunch. I became a regular visitor to the Tozer’s with the college youth. On those visits, Jim would have the freedom to let us “help him” with important projects. He had a rather large wood pile in the back yard, with enough fuel a 1000-year reign of Christ if it came to that. I think I helped him move wood in that woodpile from one end of the yard to another on many occasions. “Bob, we just need to move this over here and that will be just fantastic.” Now realize that this is before Lynn and I began to date. And wouldn’t you know when they sold that house; all that wood was carried away. I realize now that I have three daughters of my own, that the woodpile duty must have been a pledge program to screen would-be suitors for his daughter Lynn. With three daughters of my own, I am getting a wood pile for my own backyard, even though I have a gas fireplace.
Twenty years ago, Jim brought Lynn from the back of this sanctuary to the font of this sanctuary. He wore a black suit and she wore a white dress. He gave me her hand and said, “Vivian and I give you our daughter.” I promised to him, “I will take care of her before I take care of myself.”
Fifteen years ago, we returned for Christmas eve, and Jim brought our then five-year old daughter Laura onto this platform and sat her at a dining room table. She recited the entire Christmas story to him as if they were talking at home (in front not 600 people for three services).

Twelve years ago we came to here his farewell sermon. Our family stood on these steps at the end and I have much the same view that I do this morning: A view of many friends who each have had significant impact on Jim and his family and have been impacted by Jim in positive and life-changing ways.
Jim used his positive enthusiasm on and persuasive heart to urge people to make important and life changing decisions. He could see way down the road, and urge us all to do now, what we would rather ignore or put off until later, so that we could avoid a consequence down the road or enjoy the benefit of a wise choice. I think most people in this room have been impacted by this rare gift, whether it was help with a career decision, finishing a dissertation, assistance with a family member, or your own decision for Christ. Jim was God’s man beside you, to urge you to make the decision that needed to be made. On that last service he simply said as he had so many times before, “Make your decision for Christ today. Vivian and I will be standing in the back and if you made that decision, or need to know more, write your name of a piece of paper and put it in my hands.”

[2006 Christmas Letter read here]

Jim was moved home last week from the hospital and his family cared for him with the assistance of Hospice Family Care and an angel named Wanda on night shift. The days were very difficult, but the best memory for me was a moment when all the family surrounded his bedside. I had my 6-year old Anna in my arms. His tired eyes stared into the distance blankly through half shut eyelids.

When he sensed we were there, his spirit rallied and life rushed into his piercing brown eyes. He lifted his head, raised his finger and pointed at each one of us as if counting. In the best voice that he could, he whispered, “This is nice.” He let his head rest back onto the pillow.

At a time when it is easy to second guess all the medical decisions and missed opportunities of the past weeks, this is a special moment that God gave us. I believe that any husband and father in this sanctuary would be fully satisfied if that were the only moment they could have with their family as they prepared to croos the door into eternity.

As a final expression of our heart to Jim, I invite daughters Laura and Rebekah to come to the platform to play a song. When they moved to town last December, we would play for Jim and Vivian. He loved it. He would bring people to our house and make them endure us playing song after song. He would praise us with such enthusiasm. The playing of familiar hymns and songs was comforting to him. I think it also symbolized a special cohesiveness of our family’s faith in Jesus Christ to him. Laura picked this song to play for their 50th wedding anniversary in June this year. It comes from Psalm 119:105 “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.” We hope it will be a comfort to you.

Please imagine that you are in our living room, and Jim is there. Imagine if you had one more chance, what you would like to say to him about something important he did in your life. Please hear it though the ears of a proud grandfather.