God is Never Surprised

Yesterday we received some difficult news from members of our church family.  Cancer.

The older I become the more people I know who have had to battle this terrible disease.

It is never a convenient time of life to have your live altered in such a way as surgery, chemo, and radiation require that life is altered.  It seems especially cruel when those it affects are young.  The diagnoses comes with more questions than answers.  It declares that you will be walking into the dark unknown of what is ahead.  It takes a bright future and attempts to pour out a dark, foreboding cloud over the days ahead.

As Christians, our brother and sister stand firm in their faith and accept what God has allowed.  They are facing this physical health trial with God’s strength and peace.  They are praising His great name that He has revealed the disease before it had any more time to do more damage.  More tests will be run this week.  More questions will be answered.  Their faith family is covering them with our prayers; praying for healing, for miracles, for strength, for peace, for their children, for his wife, for his mother, for God’s will.

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.  Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. Matthew 6:33-34

We were reminded, in the same Holy Spirit filled worship service yesterday, that we are to take our eyes off of our circumstances, lift them up and set our eyes on Jesus – our helper, our healer, our Lord.  We cling to God’s word and His promises in times of trial.  We know His word is truth.  We know that this life isn’t all that there is.  We know that when God places circumstances in our lives that are out of our control, that He is in control.  And there is no better place to be than in the loving hands of Jesus.

I lift up my eyes to the hills.

From where does my help come?

My help comes from the Lord,

who made heaven and earth.

Psalm 121:1-2

There will be many blessings poured out on this family in the weeks and months ahead.  I’d say that it has already begun.  I admire their openness and willingness to share this trial, this journey with all those around them, proclaiming the rock upon which they stand – Jesus.  God has given them a new avenue of ministry to proclaim the great name of Jesus to all whom they will encounter; nurses, doctors, technicians, family and friends.

Those of us watching from the outside wish we could fix it, offer our best advice, even when it hasn’t been asked for, and struggle for the right words of encouragement in an attempt to lift their spirits and strengthen their hearts.  We can only do small things to demonstrate our love and concern.  God will do the big things, and they know it.  He will reveal His greatness to them over and over along this journey to healing and renewed health.

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.  James 1:12

Father God, we come before You on bended knees seeking healing for our brother.  Lord we know that You are not surprised by this news, and that You have already brought glory to Your name through their faith in You.  Please cover them with Your great peace.  Help them to keep their eyes focused on You and what You are doing.  Let us be a blessing to them as they have need.  Be with the boys as they return to school.  Help them to stay focused on their studies and not to worry about their dad.  I thank you for their great marriage and the strength of their love for each other.  Let them be a light to those they encounter along this path.  We pray all these things in the great name of Jesus.  Amen.

Life is hard.  God is good.  Be encouraged.  Press on.

Luke 12.25

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