Who would have thought God's saving power would look like this? That’s what Isaiah 53:1 says in The Message. I can’t get this question out of my mind.
Throughout my cancer diagnosis, I haven’t really spent many days questioning God. “Why” seems so irrelevant when I can see his goodness so clearly.
I am so thankful I have an intimacy with God that cancer can’t take from me. I’m so grateful the Holy Spirit caused me to take the time to cultivate intimacy with Jesus long before this cancer struck. I often wonder where I would be without Him. I’m so glad I know who He is.
Because really, who would’ve thought God’s saving power in my own life would look like this? I certainly didn’t see cancer as part of God’s power to enact his plan in my life. I didn’t. I do see book deals and large audiences. I do. You can read about all I see here.
When I was setting some goals for 2010, I prayed. I told God I was ready, ready to start writing my book, the book he called me write in elementary school. Although I didn't yet know the title, audience or content, I knew that this was the year. Many of you have asked. Yes, I’ve wanted to write a book for many years; I’m just not sure where to start… or even what to say for that matter. I think God is having me live it first.
I know writing a book is hard work. I know I could never even attempt to do it without God. I just didn’t know the process would begin like this.
Cancer. It’s such an ugly word. It’s an even uglier disease. Even in the midst of all its ugliness, I see God’s beauty. It’s funny how such a bad situation seems to unveil all that is holy and good in my life. Because of the cancer, I've gained instant perspective.
It’s now easier to pay attention to what’s really important in life. I can suddenly find more time to patiently listen to a child, quietly sit on the couch with my husband and take time from a hectic day to leisurely meet a friend for coffee. And then I ask this, “Is this perspective because of cancer or because of God?”
I look at the life of Jesus.
Isaiah 53 says He grew up a “scrubby plant in a parched field” and He was ordinary by all human standards. As He hung on the cross, He carried our sins, disfigurements and pains. “Still, it's what God had in mind all along, to crush him with pain. The plan was that he give himself as an offering for sin so that he'd see life come from it—life, life, and more life. And God's plan will deeply prosper through him.” Isaiah 53:10
That’s how I know God’s hand is all over my cancer. That’s how I know many good things will come of it. That’s how I know He’s still at work in me to produce the dreams He placed inside me long ago. He’s still at work to realize his good plan through His children. His plan will deeply prosper through all His children.
God is the same to His children yesterday, today and forever.
That’s how come I felt hope when I read Daniel 11 this week.
“…but those who stay courageously loyal to their God will take a strong stand…Those who keep their heads on straight will teach the crowds right from wrong by their example. They’ll be put to severe testing for a season… The testing will refine, cleanse, and purify those who keep their heads on straight and stay true, for there is still more to come.” Daniel 11:32-33 & 35To be continued...