I was saddened today, to hear that the legendary daredevil, Evel Knievel has passed away. I am so happy that he had made his peace with God.
Just a few months ago, on Palm Sunday, Evel shared his testimony at the Crystal Cathedral. He said that for all of his life, he refused to accept Christ as Lord. He believed in God, but couldn't get away from the gold, the gambling, the booze and the women.
Still, people prayed for Evel, including folks from his daughter's church, his ex-wife's church, as well as countless people who wrote him letters, urging him to surrender his life to Christ.
Then, it happened -- last March, during Daytona Bike Week.
In Evel's words: "I don't know what in the world happened. I don't know if it was the power of the prayer or God himself, but it just reached out, either while I was driving or walking down the sidewalk or sleeping, and it just—the power of God in Jesus just grabbed me. … All of a sudden, I just believed in Jesus Christ. I did, I believed in him! … I rose up in bed and, I was by myself, and I said, 'Devil, Devil, you bastard you, get away from me. I cast you out of my life.' … I just got on my knees and prayed that God would put his arms around me and never, ever, ever let me go."
Following his testimony, Evel was baptized by Dr. Robert H. Schuller (the dad) (trascript of interview and baptism here) Then, something extraordinary happened. Robert A. Schuller (the son), felt prompted to invite anyone else who needed to be baptized to come forward.
As the congregation spontaniously sang "Amazing Grace", between 500 and 800 people came to the front of the church and were baptized. I suppose you could say the Crystal Cathedral, that day, experienced a touch of revival.
God bless you Evel. I'm glad you took the great leap of faith.
(Christianity Today reported on the event here)