I keep going back to the words in August 22nd Jesus Calling book. “Trust Me, and don’t be afraid. I want you to view trials as exercises designed to develop your trust muscles. “ Anyone going through cancer can tell you it is a trial! For me it was a trial involving every area of my life: emotional, physical, spiritual, and mental. I was brought to the depths of utter weakness and was scared at times. Throughout the experience, God helped me develop my trust muscles. Sometimes it involved releasing my emotions to Him, sometimes it involved relying on others to help me and sometimes it was when I was sitting doing nothing but absorbing His peace and calm. Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose.” I am grateful He is still developing my spiritual muscles.
Have you ever felt that it was hard to trust God? In what ways did you see your life differently after a trial? Is there a trial you are going through that you need prayer for? Is so please share and let us know so we can pray for you.
G0d has uniquely designed our bodies to heal after an injury. I love this week’s devotional. As I read through it again the line that jumped off the page to me was, “I AM A GOD WHO HEALS.” When I first read this three years ago I was undergoing a bone marrow transplant. This was by far and away the most difficult treatment or trial I had faced, including painfully horrific cancer treatments. During the transplant I struggled with how to pray. Do I pray for healing? Do I pray for God to take away all my pain like Paul did regarding the “thorn in the flesh.” I received the most peace and comfort when I prayed with Matthew 6:33 present in my mind… “Seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” I prayed and also sang this passage to God knowing that if I truly let go of my wishes and wants, then regardless of how the treatment turned out, everything would be alright.
I find there is a calming peace and joy that’s difficult to explain when I just do what Jesus teaches us to do in Matthew 6. My prayer for you this week is that you read and find the courage to pray this passage and “seek first His Kingdom”…God will do amazing things with and though you for His glory. Please feel free to write me and share your thoughts and how we can minister to you or your loved one. John
I paused to reflect on the words in Sarah Young’s entry for today. It read: “When things go ‘wrong,’ you tend to react as if you’re being punished.” But I don’t think I do. I’ve come to rely on God’s promise in Jeremiah 29 verse 11: My loving God wants to prosper me and not to harm me. But knowing something and embracing it can be very different things. I can fight hard when hardship, disease, pain, or heartache come into my life. I feel guilt when I don’t want to embrace my “thorn in the flesh” for the future growth and reliance on God it can yield.
Sometimes I’ll even put up a cheerful front for my friends. But not to God. What good would it do? I know that “before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely.” Psalm 139:4
Instead, God lets me cry out to Him with or without words. He accepts me right where I am with full honesty. And once I have emptied my heart he offers the most precious gift of all. I am allowed to give it all to Him. And rest. Rest completely on him whose “right hand will hold me fast.” Psalm 139:10
How about you? Do you accept God’s hand in both the good and bad in your life….but inwardly cry out when that brings pain? Have you experienced the peace of crying out to God and letting go?
We are invited by Psalms 37:7 to “be still and wait patiently for Him…” My journey as a cancer patient has been filled with waiting, as I am sure yours has been as well. It seems like we are always waiting for news that others who have never gone through this can’t relate to. News like test results, results of scans, treatment plans, or waiting to find out what effect the treatment will have this time. I must admit that when I try to take it on my own shoulders, waiting only leads me to fret like the psalm warns against. As difficult as “being still and waiting” is for a typical type “A” personality, I draw great strength from God when I allow myself the pleasure of being still. As I quiet my mind and release my worries and frets to HIM I am inevitably filled with His grace and peace.
This week in the stillness of the morning, before the onslaught of the day’s activities, let’s commit to start our day by being still before the Lord, waiting patiently before Him. Psalm 37 goes on to say in verse 11 that the “meek will inherit the land and enjoy great peace”. I find that being still and waiting patiently for Him is the key that unlocks meekness in my life, which leads to “great peace”. John
Reading from the Jesus Calling devotional for April 10th reminded me of flashbacks of my life as a cancer patient.
It says, “Trust me in every aspect of your life. Everything that happens fits into a pattern for good for those who love Me. Instead of trying to analyze the intricacies of the pattern, focus your energy on trusting Me and thanking Me at all times.”
During the initial stages of my cancer diagnosis, I felt angry and wanted things to make sense. Why did this happen? I tried to analyze it and come up with answers as to why…resulting in no answer at all. Trusting God was hard during the difficult times. The physical, emotional and mental chaos of my diagnosis was overwhelming. But now looking back ten-and-a-half years later, I see God orchestrated all the pain into something bigger, more than I could have imagined. I have a deeper gift of empathy and passion for helping cancer patients. In Him I can trust. Thank you God!
Comments: What were your thoughts as you read today’s scripture passage and devotional? Have you struggled as you deal with the anger? Have you found a way to “focus your energy on trusting Me and thanking Me at all times?”
Reflecting on the July 1st devotional from Jesus Calling I am struck by the words, “Through communing with Me, you transfer your heavy burdens to My strong shoulders.”
In the midst of a confusing time, undergoing cancer treatment we can call upon God to help and know that He will. From one day to the next, or hour-by-hour, we might feel emotional, mental or physical struggles. We can ask Him for help and meditate on His words. I can’t sum up how he wants to carry our burdens better than the 23rd Psalm verse 2: “He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul.”
Comments: What were your thoughts as you read today’s scripture passage and devotional? Have you experienced the “strong shoulders” of God?