For anyone battling cancer or standing as a caregiver or friend to a cancer patient, Lynn Eib’s book Peace In The Face Of Cancer is an absolute must-read! I have already shared a few quotes from Lynn, but she also did a great job including quotes from other authors.
“To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart.” —Eleanor Roosevelt
“Every tear you cried will be redeemed. God will give you indescribable glory for your grief, not with a general wave of the hand, but in a considered and specific way. Each tear has been listed; each will be recompensed.” —Joni Eareckson Tada
“Hoping for the good news makes me feel helpless and vulnerable because it is what it is and my hoping won’t change what it is. Hoping for accurate news keeps me focused on useful information that will help me deal with what is. Hoping for accurate news helps me prepare for any news.” —Wendy Harpham
“Our anxiety does not come from thinking about the future, but from wanting to control it.” —Kahlil Gibran
“Folks are usually about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” —Abraham Lincoln
“What you believe and tell yourself can become a powerful medication in your personal pharmacy.” —Dr. William Backus
“The best way to show my gratitude to God is to accept everything, even my problems, with joy.” —Mother Teresa
“You give Me thanks (regardless of your feelings), and I give you joy (regardless of your circumstances).” —Jesus, in Sarah Young’s Jesus Calling
“Don’t count the days; makes the days count.” —Mohammad Ali
“When a train goes through a tunnel and it gets dark, you don’t throw away the ticket and jump off. You sit still and trust the engineer.” —Corrie ten Boom
“In emotional and mental health, what you believe it is all important. It makes a difference what you believe. Other people, circumstances, events and material things are not what make you happy.” —Dr. William Backus and Marie Chapian
“The people who do the best are those who don’t battle the disease, but dance with it. That means you have to be flexible and you have to know and accept your limitations. You have to allow people to help you, but without surrendering to the disease.” —Dr. George Fisher
There is perhaps nothing more heart wrenching for a Christian parent than to see their son or daughter living a life differently than how they were raised.
One biblical promise these parents can claim in prayer is—Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it (Proverbs 22:6).
But perhaps an historical example might be helpful as well—
Augustine was an undisciplined child, idle and truant despite frequent beatings. He loved sports and pranks and soon discovered a host of adolescent pleasures. … Augustine was also brilliant, and he soon moved to Carthage to further both his studies and his fun. Monica warned him against fornication, but ‘I ran headlong with blindness.’
At about 18 he found himself the father of a son. At the same time he joined a cult. Years passed, and Monica, praying ceaselessly, heard that Augustine was planning to leave Africa for Rome. She begged him not to go. When he refused, she determined to go with him. Using deception, he left her praying in a chapel and sailed without her; but she took a later boat and intercepted him. They traveled to Milan where she persuaded him to listen to the great Bishop Ambrose. The bishop’s razor-sharp sermons penetrated Augustine’s head, if not yet his heart. Monica continued praying, confiding her struggles to Ambrose. He told her not to worry: ‘It isn’t possible for the son of such prayers to be lost.’
One day as Augustine sat in a friend’s garden he heard a child singing, ‘Take up and read!’ He opened the Bible near him and read from Romans 13: ‘Don’t go to wild parties or get drunk or be vulgar or indecent.… Let the Lord Jesus Christ be as near to you as the clothes you wear.’ By the time he finished the sentence, he later said, he was converted. On the eve of Easter, April 24, 387, Augustine and his son Adeodatus were baptized by Ambrose as Monica watched. Her lifetime of prayer was answered, and a church father was born.
Years later as Augustine shared about his conversion in his book Confessions, he wrote out this prayer to God: “My mother, Your faithful servant, wept to You for me, shedding more tears for my spiritual death than others shed for the bodily death of a son. You heard her.”
So, Christian Mom and Dad, don’t EVER stop praying for your wayward child! God hears those prayers, and is moving on behalf of your child.
Another great Sunday worshiping with my church family and learning more about prayer! Here are a few take-aways that I hope encouraged you today.
In the cycle of prayer, your level of peace will determine your level of perseverance. This is why it’s so important to be immersed in God’s Word and allowing the Holy Spirit to give you His discernment. Keep on praying!
“The worst of it is that we can believe God about everything except the present pressing trial. This is folly. Come, my soul, shake off such sinfulness, and trust your God with the load, the labor, the longing of this present.” —Charles Spurgeon
“God’s silences are His answers. … Some prayers are followed by silence because they are wrong [this is where we need God’s discernment], others because they are bigger than we can understand [this is where we need His peace].” —Oswald Chambers
In the meantime, remember this: God feels all of your infirmities, and He sees all of your tears.
Compassion means to not only feel what someone else is feeling, but then to make a move toward that person to help. In the life of Jesus you will often see the phrase “He was moved with compassion” and then Jesus taught or healed or acted to alleviate someone’s discomfort.
Pastors, we need to teach our congregations to be people of compassion: to feel the needs of those around them and then move to act in the love of Christ.
“The multitudes that were so dear to Christ shall not be less dear to me. If I cannot prevent their moral suicide, I shall at least baptize them with my human tears. I want no blessing that I cannot share. I seek no spirituality that I must win at the cost of forgetting that men and women are lost and without hope. If in spite of all I can do they will sin against light and bring upon themselves the displeasure of a holy God, then I must not let them go their sad way unwept. I scorn a happiness that I must purchase with ignorance. I reject a heaven that I must enter by shutting my eyes to the sufferings of my fellow men. I choose a broken heart rather than any happiness that ignores the tragedy of human life and human death. Though I, through the grace of God in Christ, no longer lie under Adam’s sin, I would still feel a bond of compassion for all of Adam’s tragic race, and I am determined that I shall go down to the grave or up into God’s heaven mourning for the lost and the perishing.” —A.W. Tozer (emphasis added)