Chip Off the Spiritual Family
My friend Chip Stam died on Sunday. Though I would never wish Chip back here because he has his heart's desire to see his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, yet I would like to tell you the impact Chip and the Stam family have had on my life.The Stam family were a part of my life growing up in New Jersey. Paul & Jane's house at Smoke Rise was a magical home! The game room was well stocked (fondly remembered), the food was a-plenty (yum), the musical talent amazing (singing and playing multiple instruments), and the laughter continuous. The stories of their family from living overseas were spell-binding and culturally hilarious. But it was not until years later that I discovered the wellspring of such fellowship was drawn deep within the spiritual legacy of their family.
The Stam family, wherever they lived, delighted in speaking of Jesus Christ, to whom they owed their very lives. Though many may know of John & Betty Stam martyrdom in China, few may realize the ripple effect their blood had to seed a missionary furor at Moody Bible Institute.
Chip's father, Paul, was a chemist and then lawyer, working at the apex of his profession/s while serving quietly on the boards of the Gideons and Billy Graham Evangelistic Crusade. Chip's mom, Jane, is so welcoming -- and her hugs, given with Southern charm, would completely envelope you. I was completely in awe of the kids -- Skip, Chip, Billy and Jane -- each one so accomplished (even then)! And then 35 years ago Chip married Doris!
Chip embodied the Gospel in music. Having taught formally at University of Notre Dame (beginning of his formal career) and The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY, (toward the end) Chip led worship services in churches throughout the US. But it was his thoughts regarding the gift of music by the God of music which has inflamed the minds and souls of many in the musical world.
Though Chip's life here has ceased, he would vehemently challenge us to insure the praises of our Lord never do so. Carl "Chip" Stam (1953-2011)