Today mom was informed by her doctor that she has cancer. Spent time with her this afternoon. In the midst of trial God is good. We are more the conquerors through Christ our Lord. No weapon formed against us shall prosper. We do not fight AGAINST cancer. We fight FOR life. There is a difference. When I think that I have to fight against some "thing" I may often feel overwhelmed and defeated. But when I fight for LIFE I never fight alone, because my God is the God of life. He goes before. He stands beside me and he is my rear guard.
After two of the most challenging weeks thus far in my role as Executive Director of Armed Forces Mission, and after more than 80 hours of chaplain and pastoral care with many others in our community since January 13, I am more aware than ever that many people carry heavy burdens. I have many people ask me "What is the purpose of pain?" I can't say for you. It is a reality that you have to come to, but for me it has been in pain that I have found my purpose.
In a session today with a deeply hurting veteran I encouraged him to re-frame his idea that God was testing him into one that God was preparing him. God the Father was not testing Jesus in the Garden when he sweat drops of blood. He was preparing him to do what only he could do. The pain that we go through does not diminish the glory of God as some think; rather it reveals it, in the deepening of love and compassion. It opens doors for others to use their gifts of comfort to say a prayer (Kem Woody Williams). It brings tears that wash away the pain of past failures and opens the door to the ultimate truth that our God is the God of resurrection power.
I don't know what pains you today, but I do know that even now you can have peace that passes all understanding. He comforts the broken hearted. He heals the wounds. He restores passion for life, and brings us face to face with the truth that in Him we can face all that comes our way.
Peace tonight to all who are hurting. His grace is sufficient for you.