The Grace of God

That Brings Salvation Has Appeared to All Men (Titus 2:11)

Living & Dying Unto the Lord

Posted by israeliteindeed on January 29, 2017

My husband and I have entered the longest, darkest valley we’ve ever been in. He was diagnosed with cancer. We were told he was cancer-free after surgery, but shortly after that, 5 tumors were spotted in his abdominal soft tissue. We went the all natural route with a very clean diet and supplements, detoxing, etc. But a month ago, the unforeseeable happened. A tumor burst through my husband’s skin. Until then, he was doing very well, even working full time. After this, his health rapidly declined, and the tumors began to grow extremely fast, bursting through the skin one by one. In one month’s time, he went from feeling “normal” to seemingly at death’s door. He spent 8 days in the hospital. We are beginning new treatments this week, along with continuing to try to nourish him with foods like moringa, turmeric, coconut oil, etc.

Nothing can prepare you to watch someone you love lose his strength, his muscle, his size, his energy, his skin (the tumors are eating the skin off his stomach).  Even his voice has been reduced almost to a whisper. I have to remind myself that even “Jesus wept.” It hurts.

But…God has saved him. He is redeemed. He is my brother. He has eternal life. He is committed to Jesus.  How do we assign value to this? Even as I weep off and on during the difficult days, I see the value of my husband’s redemption, and I feel its tremendous comfort.

And so into the darkness of the valley of the shadow of death, a Light shines. A Light bright enough to carry us all the way home if necessary, goodness and mercy trailing behind us. Some truths we understood in part; now we more fully understand. I expect the picture will grow clearer and clearer over time.

Unfortunately, sickness has a way of bringing miserable comforters to your side. They have good intentions, but they don’t understand what God is doing. See the book of Job. His friends insisted Job must have some sin in his life, or he would be healed. God corrected them. I’m so glad that book is in the Bible. Job still speaks comfort to the righteous all over the world who are suffering!

Someone gave us a book that claims physical healing is included in the atonement, and therefore any Christian can demand a physical healing, and God MUST heal them. If they don’t get healed, they must not have the right faith. This doctrine is false.

If we can command God, then we are God, and He is not God. He is God, and we are His sheep. He commands us, and He leads us where He wants because He’s alot wiser than we are. Sometimes He leads us through the valley of the shadow of death because it will bring a greater good whether we are eventually healed or not. Those who love Him follow Him wherever He goes, and He sustains them whether they live or die.

For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; and whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s. (Rom. 14:8)

We will have neither sorrow nor pain nor tears nor death AFTER WE ARE RESURRECTED.The “second death” has no power over us (Rev. 2:11). But all are appointed  to die once in this temporary life, and after that the judgment (Heb. 9:27). We have all been dying since we were born.  One day, something–or many things– will quit working, and these bodies will expire. If you have not yet realized that all flesh is like the grass, quickly fading, in time you will see this truth. It is hard to truly grasp until it happens to you.

The doctrine that if you aren’t healed, you lacked faith, very often condemns the just and makes the heart of the righteous sad, whom God has not made sad (Ezek. 13:22). Thankfully we have the Truth upholding us and the presence of Jesus surrounding us like an impregnable fortress. It’s ironic that we have to hold our shields of faith up to stop the fiery darts of the wicked one (that come through professed believers) saying, “You must have no faith.”

He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the just, both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord. (Prov. 17:15)

Satan has created a false “faith” that says we can, like God Himself, name it and claim it. That’s not faith; it’s paganism.  Faith trusts in God’s promises–all of them–including the ones that promise we will suffer, but one day our sufferings will cease forever.

God has been preparing me for these days for two years. I didn’t understand the preparation time until now.  He’s been tearing away from me all obsession with this life. This life is beautiful even in a sin-cursed world, and yet the redemption of sinners and the building of God’s kingdom is the ultimate goal as we dwell in tents of perishable skin. I haven’t always had the right priorities. The world teaches us to seek after food, clothes, health, wealth, power, beauty. These are nothing but dung compared to knowing Jesus and making Him known. If I knew this before, I know it better now.

I believe God can do anything. He can heal with a Word. He does heal today. And He WILL heal if it brings the most good to the most people. But He alone knows what will bring the most good. I know if it was up to me to wave some magic wand and get everything I thought I needed, I’d be a self-centered narcissist. That’s not good, and it’s not what I need. I would never elect to go through the fire, but God knows we need refining. God values our souls more than our temporary bodies. His ways are higher than our ways. We are invited to have the mind of Christ, and to assign our bodies and souls the same value He does (Matt. 10:28).

I know and confess that God is good even if He doesn’t heal my husband of cancer. He has forgiven us our sins. He has reached through the confusion and pain of this life to give us the truth that healed our rebellious hearts. He has given us such a beautiful marriage, and precious children and grandchildren.  Even now He continues to bless us, but we need our spiritual eyesight sharpened to see it. That’s ok. On the days our eyesight is poor, He sends a godly friend with a word in season, and the picture clears. He is a good Father, our Healer, our Redeemer, our Provider, our Life, our peace, and our joy. The Friend that sticks closer than a brother. The One who wept at the tomb of Lazarus is not forgetting any labor of love we ever did, and our tears are in His bottle. “My soul magnifies the Lord”!

If you love the Lord Jesus, will you please pray for our family? Pray that my husband’s faith does not fail, and that our lights continue to shine brightly no matter what. Pray we glorify Jesus in this trial, as we should. Pray for the unbelievers in our lives that we may influence because of our circumstances. I am asking my Father to touch and heal my husband and give him more years here, but I trust that He knows what is best and will do it.

God bless you!

19 Responses to “Living & Dying Unto the Lord”

  1. michaelbattle65 said

    Thank you for sharing your heart. May God’s abundant grace minister to you and your husband, and may God’s tender mercies fill both of your lives. May you both experience his glory and goodness in the days ahead.

  2. Colleen said

    Praying to our Father, the God of all comfort for all that you asked, Sister. May He grant your requests and ours as we say, “Your will be done, Father.”

  3. Nicole said

    I read your email back in January and again today and want to encourage you to stay in the faith. The Lord knows what he ‘s doing and I pray that He brings your heart ever closer to Him during good times and hard times. He loves you and may He grant you healing and comfort.

    • Thank you for this encouragement, Nicole. We have held fast to Jesus during this trial of our faith, and we know that when we were weak, the prayers of the saints carried us to Him. I’m eternally grateful for the family of God. I will be updating soon. Agape in Jesus to you.

  4. Thiboutot said

    Always wanted to comment and never have. I have always enjoyed your posts. So many truths.This last blog hurt. May God be with you guys and may He be felt close enough to touch as you go through this time of trying. Its beautiful to know that you know where to find life answers. God bless you.

  5. born2bfree said

    I read this post several weeks back and was so sorry to read about what you and your husband are going through. I shared the post with my husband, and we both went immediately to prayer. It is a blessing in the midst of adversity to have a hope beyond this life. It is a wonderful hope of something much better than what this life can offer, yet at the same time, we love this life, even with its suffering. It seems that our hope beyond the grave helps make current suffering more bearable and this life more precious to us. There is comfort and strength in hope. “If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.”1Cor15:19

    See 2Cor1:2-11 (Here is a modified version, modification in parenthesis): Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth (you) in all (your) tribulation, that (ye) may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith (you yourselves) are comforted of God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in (you), so (your) consolation also aboundeth by Christ. And whether (ye) be afflicted, it is for (our) consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which (ye) also suffer: or whether (ye) be comforted, it is for (our) consolation and salvation. And our hope of you is stedfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye also be of the consolation. For we (are not), brethren, …ignorant of (your) trouble…, that (ye are) pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that (ye despair) even of life: But (ye have) the sentence of death in (yourselves), that (ye) should not trust in (yourselves), but in God which raiseth the dead: Who delivered (you) from so great a death [in sin], and doth deliver: in whom (ye) trust that he will yet deliver (you); (We) also helping together by prayer for (you), that for the gift bestowed upon (you) by the means of many persons [that gift of our united prayer for you] thanks may be given by many [all of us who are praying for you] on (your) behalf.

    We will continue to pray, as you have requested, according to the abundant love, mercy, grace and perfect will of God.

    • Thank you so much. Your message was heartfelt and needed. The Lord has sustained us both. I will be updating soon. Agape in Jesus to you.

    • I’m so sorry that I never responded to this lovely and heartfelt comment. Please forgive me, as I was in a bit of a daze for some time with all that was happening. What a comfort to me that you and your husband “went immediately to prayer.” The family of God is truly wonderful. Jesus has been near, and though there are tears, there is also comfort, strength, and purpose in the suffering. The passage you shared touches on some of those purposes– that our trust may be fully in the Father, and that we may comfort others in their time of need. Thank you so much, dear sister.

  6. Rochelle said

    So appreciated all your thoughts.
    I’m praying for your family that God’s will be done. ROMANS 8.28
    God is calling out a people for his name(the bride in heaven) to bless all the families of the earth. True Christians will have all the experiences common to man , so we can help those resurrected on earth to be in Harmony with God .The Lord’s prayer promises “Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth , as it is in heaven…”
    You have so much faith .God will bless you.

    • Thank you for these uplifting words, Rochelle. I regret that I was unable to answer until now. I will be updating soon. The Lord is our Shepherd, and the righteous are never forsaken. Agape in Jesus to you.

  7. Andrew said

    I hope to be able to talk to your husband one day. I have some questions about salvation to ask him. So I pray he is healed and is given his health back by God.

    • Thank you, Andrew. My husband was taken home by the Lord on Feb. 27, 2017. If there are any questions I can answer, I’ll do my best to point you to the answers in Scripture. God bless you.

  8. My heart aches for you, and though you sorrow, you do not sorrow as those with no hope. This November my husband and I would have been married 32 years, but he died of a massive heart attack while at work on April 27th. My tears, hugs, and heart are with you and family.

    • I’m glad to hear from you, but so sorry to hear that your husband also passed away. I will pray for you!

      I learned the truth of your words–“You do not sorrow as those with no hope”–when I joined a widow’s group. Some of the women are still so tortured, even years after the loss of their spouse. Some, looking to mediums to try to find some peace of mind–of course, they will NEVER find it there. I was so sad for them! I have some very difficult moments, but I really saw this truth:

      Then you shall again discern between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him. (Mal. 3:18)

      Love and prayers,

  9. “I do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning those who have fallen asleep, lest you sorrow as others who have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus.
    For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord will by no means precede those who are asleep. For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord. Therefore comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thess. 4:13-18).

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