My high school Sunday School teacher sent a beautiful e-mail today as her husband has been fighting pancreatic cancer since November 2006. Last night she came across something she had written in her Bible in August 2001. She gave me her permission to post it here. More than 30 years have passed since I was in their non-denominational protestant church, but it is surprising how much faith we still have in common:
Everything that comes into my life is in some way a gift. Everything (happiness, family, joy, suffering, grief). So in every experience I must recognize that it is material for sacrifice, an offering back and up to God. He is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Amen.”
That was true in August 2001. It was true in November 2006 when we received the diagnosis of pancreatic cancer and is still true in May 2008.
The word Everything teaches us about our Lord-
Jn 3:35 The Father loves the Son and has placed everything in his hands. — Sovereignty
Jn. 4:39 Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did.— Omniscience
Jn 14:26 … the Holy Spirit, … will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. — Omnipresence, Omniscience
1 Cor. 10:26 The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it. — Sovereignty
I could go on and on.
John and I stand amazed as we watch everything our Heavenly Father works out in our lives, opening doors of witness in suffering and grief, yes, we grieve. All this gives us the opportunity to offer back to God our praise and thanksgiving for His faithfulness and goodness to us.
“Always giving thanks to God the Father FOR everything.” Eph. 5:20
“Give thanks IN all circumstances [everything], for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thess. 5:18