Texas Pastor Finds Inspiration In Near Death Experience
“Anytime I have a bad day, when I’m thinking, ‘God, do you have a purpose for me?’ I reach back and feel those knots,” says Scott Crenshaw, pastor of New River Fellowship in Hudson Oaks, Texas. Those bumps serve as a constant reminder of God’s plan for Crenshaw.
The bumps are from twenty years ago, the night Crenshaw thought was his last. A man shot Crenshaw three times at point blank range. A story about the incident was printed in the March/April 1992 issue of Southwestern News, the alumni magazine for the seminary where Crenshaw was a student. According to the article, the extent of the injuries were the bumps. Everyone believed the gun was loaded with blanks.
They believed that until 2008 when an X-ray found three bullets – two against his skull, and one lodged in the shoulder. The bullets had flattened like “little pancakes.”
Terry Evans of the Star-Telegram asked Crenshaw for the full story from the incident. On that fateful night twenty years ago, Crenshaw was at a convenience store when two men came in, one of which struck up a conversation. On Crenshaw’s way out, the men asked for a ride, which he saw as an opportunity to witness to them. Instead of getting his opportunity to minister, the men had Crenshaw stop on a dark street, lept out of the car, and one of the men put a gun in Crenshaw’s face while telling him to get on the ground.
Instead, Crenshaw defiantly said “no […] I’m a Christian. I die right now, I go to heaven. Go ahead and kill me.” He then turned his back on his assailants. He hurd the gunshots, as his attackers got in the car, leaving him with his head throbbing, ears ringing, but still somehow alive.
After refusing medical attention, Crenshaw returned to his apartment on campus for some mending with Renee Crenshaw. Both assumed the wounds were from the wadding in blank rounds.
Now, Crenshaw believes he would certainly be dead if God did not have a plan for him, and he has gone on to inspire many members of New River Fellowship. That divine plan that kept him alive twenty years ago has helped Crenshaw build the congregation at New River which has ballooned from 350 people to 2,000 in their new sanctuary.