Reverend Robert H. Williams
I am writing to announce the passing of my wonderful, beloved husband and devoted child of God, Pastor Bob Williams, on Sunday afternoon, April 2, 2023. I thank the Lord for the strength and grace He provided me that Bob was able to be at home when he passed, and I will always consider it a privilege to have been by his side as he took his final step from this world into Heaven.
Bob and I were able to share many long, heart-to-heart conversations over the years, and especially so in the months and weeks leading up to his going Home, and he shared what he wanted and did not want should Jesus call his name before mine. He told me more than once that he did not want any special emphasis placed upon his life, and he did not even care to have a published obituary per se, listing his life's accomplishments. However, I feel some basic facts about Bob will not negate his request. I pray that my words here will honor the man, but ultimately give glory to God, the One who called him to be the yielded vessel that He would use to touch thousands of lives over the years.
Bob was born in January of 1936; thus, he was 87 at the time of his death. The Lord had called Bob into ministry when he was nine years of age. Declining health forced him into retirement in June of 2021. He had served 67 years of fulltime ministry. Teaching the Word of God and mentoring men who had experienced the call of God on their lives were his greatest passions. Bob Williams was an anointed man of God, because he loved God with all his heart, soul, mind and strength. He was gifted with a special anointing because he delighted in walking with God daily and studied His Word faithfully. Bob never got his sermons or teachings from reading a book or from the internet. As he immersed himself in the Word, the Holy Spirit would give him a "knowing" of what message he was to share with God's people. Through the anointing, he was given a gift of bringing the Word of God to a place where the listeners could understand it and make it applicable to their daily lives. He delivered the pure Word of God, the most important message the people needed to change their lives and build a strong spiritual foundation. Bob preached love, not law. Yes, rules are necessary for order, but rules without love, compassion and empathy are destructive.
I will always remember him, many times, standing in the pulpit, holding his Bible up and telling us, "This is the Book that comes with what God made. Just like when we buy a new toaster or washing machine, we get an instruction book with it that gives us directions for how we may enjoy the best the appliance has to offer, but few people ever read instruction books. Within the pages of the Bible, we are given instructions that tell us how to navigate our lives here on earth to best enjoy all that God has offered us. Naming just a few, it tells us who to marry and who to refrain from getting involved with, how to manage our money, how to go to sleep and how to wake up, who to keep company with and who to run from and how to maintain our health. The Bible covers every facet of our lives." Bob would say, "Folks, you can save yourself a lot of unnecessary heartache, sorrow and frustration if you would just read God's instruction Book for life and obey its teachings." Bob possessed an engaging sense of humor, and he would often interject it into his sermons and teachings. He was very intelligent and very wise. He enjoyed our quiet and peaceful life and had no time for gossip and unnecessary drama.
Yes, I grieve deeply over the loss of my husband, my love, my best friend and teacher, but I also rejoice in knowng that he is Home. (II Timothy 4:7-9) I believe that if, at this very moment I could stand before both Bob and my Savior, Jesus Christ, they would each say, "You did fine, Yvonne". That is of utmost importance to me. I have honored His servant, the man, Robert H. Williams, but I truly give all glory to our God in Heaven.
God never promised us lives free of adversity, heartache, sorrow and pain, but He did promise that if we would yield to Him, He would walk alongside us, guide our steps and comfort us during all the challenging times of our lives. I stood in awe as I watched God hand-pick the people who came into our home and joined with me to care for Bob, those who gave their love and support to both of us during the last steps of Bob's journey Home.
I extend my most sincere thanks to Dr. Daniel Bodnar, Dr. Daniel DiCola, our Excela Hospice team, Ashley and Erica; Brittany, who went way above and beyond the call of duty; my right-arm caregiver, Karen Lynn; Hospice Pastor Kevin and visiting upcoming ministers, Chris and Hank, who were the last young men to whom Bob offered mentoring wisdom. Many, many thanks to all of our faithful friends, who helped lessen the weight of my every-day, caregiver responsibilities by providing a meal, visiting Bob, helping me do outside, heavy work and/or covering us with their prayers: Renie Parks, Mike and Julie Berry, Judy Slifko, Diana Lohr, Steve Pastva, Olive Marin, Brenda Carlson, the Riva family, Jim Brown, Pastor Mike and Geraldine Noon, Pastor Almon Birt, Pastor Rich Phipps and the strong, helpers from his congregation. To all our friends who were limited to phone calls due to health issues of their own but who offered me words of encouragement: Pastor Jim Lyons and Pastor Bill Dodson. With immense gratitude, I thank you. Thank you Pastor Johnny Marshall for your texts, your words of support and love.
Following Bob's wishes, all arrangements were private and handled by the McCabe Funeral Home, Derry, PA. Online condolences may be made to mccabefuneralhomespa.com
If you would like to make a donation in Bob's memory, his two most favorite charities were: Great Lakes Rabbit Sanctuary, PO Box 7, Whittaker, MI 48190 or Best Friends Animal Society, 5001 Angel Canyon Road, PO Box 567, Kanab, UT 84741 - bestfriends.org/donate