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Finish the Race with Joy
(Acts 20:24)

Paul and I have loved TBN more than anyone on earth can imagine. These past 40 years we worked together as a team as we praised, laughed, cried, believed, and dedicated our lives to this precious God­-birthed and God-­breathed ministry. We were so sure that the two of us would be working together running TBN until the day we would both go to be with Jesus in the Rapture of the church! But, on November 30, 2013, after 40 years of dreaming, planning, loving, working, crying, praying, and laughing together — JESUS CALLED and Paul could not say no to our precious Savior’s Voice.

Paul fought a good fight. He had finished his course and he chose to be with Jesus and the TBN Partners in heaven. In his final days, he experienced glimpses of glory and saw loved ones that are already there. We witnessed him talking to some of them! My beloved father — Edgar Bethany — was cheering him on. Paul’s dear friend, Dr. Donald Whitaker was there. Paul saw his own father, Andrew Crouch, and talked with him before being lifted into his heavenly home. Laurie and I both saw an angel waiting for Paul right above his final home.

One of the final things Paul said on his last day — his physician, Dr. Raafat Girgis, had asked him a question — was “JUST ASK JAN.” We laughed and cried. Now I am the one who wants to ask Paul a question and hear his gentle “no,” or “maybe so.” In 40 years of working together — this is a true statement that we talked about often — Paul and I never disagreed when it came to TBN. God would speak through one of us and the other would have perfect peace about it. This peace that would pass our understanding reigned and ruled us for 40 years of building TBN. I knew what Paul loved — and I also knew what he did not. How many countless times we would say to each other, “Isn’t this a miracle?” We felt exactly the same about everything.

It’s been a few months now and I still cannot believe Paul is not by my side. It feels like he’s just away on a trip and he’ll be back soon. But even though he is not physically here anymore, he is with us in the love of Jesus and we are all inspired by his memory — the spirit of “what Paul would do” is so prevalent in the important decisions made for the ministry. The work at TBN continues! Every day we get new program­ming and work to add new inter­national affiliates to our family of networks — reaching the world for Jesus in the languages of the nations. We’re producing powerful new Praise church services and select ing beautiful love gifts for our Partners. We’ll see that every bill is paid on time and follow Paul’s rules: Don’t overspend, don’t borrow, and GO, GO, GO into this beautiful world until everyone has heard the name of Jesus!

Your prayers and your love is what will keep us going. Our love for Jesus and for His TBN will sustain us. Our love for you — our wonderful TBN Partners — will keep us smiling and going, and crying and praying, and believing and receiving for you. We will all listen and remember just the way Papa wanted TBN to be run.

We miss you precious, heroic, God-loving, Papa. We’ll always miss you, but we’ll work just as hard as you did, Papa. We’ll work until we hear Jesus’ precious Voice calling us home. At the end of my life, I’ll say: “Just ask Matt.” I love you, Papa. I’ll see you soon....


From 2012: Paul and Jan at the Holy Land Experience.