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.
We believe in the Truth. Not truth as the world tells us, not truth that changes with the times but absolute Truth. Truth that does not change and is consistent. It is this Truth that tells us of the life to come. This life is short....we are here today and gone tomorrow. It is filled with pain and suffering. It is but a shadow of the life to come. I believe without a doubt that there is a life to come. You will be in one of two places when you die: with God or without God. Where you go is up to you...only you get to decide where you will spend eternity. This isn't a matter to be taken lightly. I know that not all of my readers will agree with me. Some of you may even be offended. oh well. This is Truth. Regardless if you believe it or not, the Truth stands. You may realized too late that it is unchanging, absolute Truth. I hope that you will consider eternity now and not when it's too late
We didn't always believe this. God used the bad to bring about good. Daddy wouldn't have changed anything about the past because he saw the good it brought.
In 1993 dad was diagnosed with cancer for the third time. This time it was in his pancreas. That's a scary diagnosis to get because it is very hard to cure. It seemed like the end was close (not that I knew it at the time. Mom and dad were very good about keeping scary stuff from as as they wanted me to have a normal childhood. I didn't know how serious it was until much later). The doctors told us that there was a surgery option called a Whipple. I think the doctor gave us somewhere around 5-10% survival rate. The odds weren't good but since it was really our only option, we did it. The surgery took place on December 22, 1993. Miraculously he survived. Chemo and radiation followed and he was in the hospital for a long time.
A friend of dad's from work, who was also a pastor would visit pretty often. He shared with him about Jesus. That Jesus is God and that he lived a perfect, sinless life on earth. That he died on the cross for his (and mine and your) sins. That death could not overcome Jesus and Jesus rose again and is now at the right hand of God in heaven. That we can't do anything to earn salvation, that it is a free gift. Dad believed and a short time later so did I. Mom reconfirmed her faith. Our new faith helped us and our church was amazing and supportive and prayed along side us for his recovery.
And recover he did. Dad came home and the doctors were amazed. They had no medical explanation of why he lived. The years rolled by and the doctors remained amazed. We knew that God had healed him and that God had things for him to do. Dad taught and discipled people. He has a great love for God's word. He loved to read it and dig into it. He LOVED the commentaries I used in my college classes and he used them long after I stopped using them. Dad and I would have great theological conversations at dinner. He loved God.
It's been 18 years since he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. There are have many trips to the hospital since then along with numerous doctors visits and ongoing health concerns. Through it all he remained positive and praised God. He never blamed God for his health issues. He never got angry and blamed him. Instead he thanked God that he was still here. Dad accomplished the things God had prepared in advance for him to do. Dad is now on his way home...his real home. The one that he's been looking forward to. I will see him there again. Dad will have his new body and there will be no more cancer and no more pain. He will be with our friend Jimmy and will be waiting for mom and I join him.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.