Wednesday, June 22, 2005


Yesterday was a day of strange coincidences...
(that's Joe-incidence with a C!)

Three people, all close to my heart, shared with me news of cancer in their lives. One has stage two liver cancer, one possibly has thryoid cancer, and one has cancer in several different places.

Selfishly, you always want those you love to live free from any sadness or challenging experiences, but it's often through those experiences that deep and changing growth and a deepening faith for all those involved occurs.

Why would God permit suffering in our lives?

My humble opinion is that it helps draw us closer to Him. It's the releasing of our own will for our lives, and turning it over to the Lord. Giving up control over the things in our lives that we should be entrusting to him (but aren't, for whatever reason), and letting him untwist the most hurting parts of our lives with His love. Sometimes the untwisting comes through physical healing, sometimes through emotional healing, and often times through a spiritual healing.

Peter Kreeft has an amazing piece from his book "Making Sense out of Suffering". What spoke most to my heart last night and this morning is the following...
"When we feel the hammers of life beating on our heads or on our hearts, we can know—we must know—that he is here with us, taking our blows. Every tear we shed becomes his tear. He may not yet wipe them away, but he makes them his. Would we rather have our own dry eyes, or his tear-filled ones? He came. He is here. That is the salient fact. If he does not heal all our broken bones and loves and lives now, he comes into them and is broken, like bread, and we are nourished. And he shows us that we can henceforth use our very brokenness as nourishment for those we love. Since we are his body, we too are the bread that is broken for others. Our very failures help heal other lives; our very tears help wipe away tears; our being hated helps those we love. When those we love hang up on us, he keeps the lines open. His withness with us enables us to be with those who refuse to be with us."

For those of you in my life who are bearing the cross of cancer right now - either personally or in your family, thank you for the example you show me every day in your love, faith, and strength. Know how closely I am holding you in prayer. But more than are being held close by the One who loves you the most...and His grip is much more powerful and secure than anything on this earth.

I love you.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Shelley what a awesome piece on "Suffering" As I was once told there is a reason for everything that happens, it is not what happens to us but how we react! Tim B

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