March 19, 2021

Embrace Trials, Hold Joy, God is Near You

 In recent days reports on my physical health have begun circulating the Internet. Here are the details.

One month ago I was diagnosed with cancer. It was found while being treated for another minor issue. It is a Metastatic Kidney (Renal Cell) Carcinoma. The tumor is in my left kidney.  It is Stage 4 having spread to my left lung and liver. This particular cancer is incurable.

My oncologist started me this week on a course of medications, which targets and kills cancer cells, works to shrink the tumor and help manage my symptoms. In June a new CT scan will be done to measure the effectiveness of this treatment. There is no prognosis. We simply let the Lord work out his plan for me, while we wait on the results of the next scan.

In 2010 I had colon cancer. That tumor was surgically removed and I recovered over time. This, however, will be a different process.

I was born again in April 1979. Since then I have known two things: 1) I am on my way to Heaven, and 2) I can trust God’s will for me. On the former the only thing I never knew was how I’m going to get there. On the latter, I do not have to be afraid of God’s will for my life. He has never thrown me a curve.

Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God,” (2 Cor. 1:3-4).

I am trusting in God’s perfect way for me. The hymn writer captures how I can have “Strength …to meet my trials here,” “That every day the Lord Himself is near me,” Our protection…is a charge that on Himself He laid,” “He will help me…in every tribulation,” “Till I reach the promised land.” Day By Day, lyrics by Lina Sindell (paraphrasing mine).

What we all learn in time is that you may not truly experience these things to the fullest until you are in a time of trial and tribulation. Embrace it, hold joy, God is near you. The blessed hope is our future.