A Tribute to Randy Estelle, and a Study in Contrasts


July 4, 2021: shocking news to our hearts. A beloved pastor and friend of ours, Randy Estelle, passed away mid-April, and to that scourge of the earth, Covid.

By chance last night we watched a documentary about Whitney Houston. What an example God set before our eyeswhat a contrast, between the life of Whitney Houston and that of Randy Estelle.

Poor Whitney! My heart broke for her. I know that at death is judgement… but I can’t help praying that God was merciful to her broken soul. 

This morning Matthew Henry’s commentary on John 1:29 came to mind, about Jesus the Lamb Of God, Who takes away the sin of the world:

“He takes away that which is, above any thing, offensive to the holiness of God, and destructive to the happiness of man.

Whitney Houston, a tragic example of how sin does not lead to happiness!

Fame does not lead to happiness. Nor fortune. Nor great ability, nor beauty. 

And now we come to Randy Estelle. I hope you listened to the clip in the link I posted above. If not, do it now.

Here was a man, also endowed with a great gift. He was destined, also, for fame, and fortune, maybe not to the level of Whitney, but I copied this from his obituary:

“He began piano at 7 yrs. old. He was an excellent cellist and French horn player, he played in various honor bands and orchestras. Randy studied at Carnegie Mellon Univ. with a full scholarship under the tutelage of Dr. Harry Franklin. Randy met his Lord and Savior, Jesus, at 19 and was immediately drawn to play and minister for Him even though he was receiving multiple offers to join major national acts such as Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons.”

Randy chose the better part. 

I am not judging Whitney here, her husband, family and surrounding entourage did not help her. But Randy chose the better way. He chose to use his gift they way the Lord intended him to, not for his own glory, but for God’s.

He never even hinted at being proud, or resentful of not being a worldly success, or even of having a huge church. He exemplified humility and contentment, which is of great worth. 

I wrote this to his family and church:

We are heartbroken by this news…It’s not like Randy lived a quiet, uneventful life. No. He was noisy, and busy, and exuberant. His absence must be deafening. 

Please stop and say a prayer for his wife Lisa and his church family. 

God took a great man from this earth, and it is a great loss to us all…maybe just to remind us all that, no matter how alive we may feel, this is not our home. We should hold loosely the things of this earth.

As others have said, Randy Estelle gave everything he had for the glory of God. 

I hope I can honor his life by following in his footsteps, a little more each day. I want to also choose the better way, one decision at a time.

Rest In Peace, you faithful servant of the Most High.

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