When most things in life are going along smoothly, or fairly comfortably, it is easy to think that we will continue on in life, ministry, as things have been.
Since we know we are doing what God has called us to do, we are enjoying the ministries we are in, and results are seen, why should anything change?
Sorry folks, I don’t have the answer to that question, but I will attempt to share a bit here of my experience, and how or what I am in the process of learning.
Life was going great. I had been retired for a number of years, and was a member of, and a leader of, a Street Ministry Outreach Team at our Church. Many connections had been made with homeless, challenged people over the years, who we got to know well, pray with about various life situations, and share the Love of our Lord Jesus Christ with.
Suddenly in March 2012, with no warning, nor apparent reason, I was hit with tremendous pain through the entire left side of my body, from neck to ankle. At the same time, difficulty with swallowing started, limiting my diet to soups, and other liquids. Due to all this, it was necessary to discontinue being a part of the Street Team, as well as stopping volunteering at a Community Drop In Centre.
Our Doctor started multiple tests,including much blood work, x-rays, ultra-sound, two MRIs, Cat Scans, Endoscopy, and some I don’t recall, with nothing showing up, except lots of arthritis, weight loss, tiredness, more severe pain.
Jumping a few months forward now, in October 2012, a totally unrelated test showed I had colon cancer. Moving up the line quickly, surgery was performed with all the cancer removed, and no chemo or radiation necessary. Praise Jesus.
It took a few months, but I was able to join the Team on the street again, as well as at the Drop In. As time went on, tiredness and weakness, along with the pain, continued to increase, so obviously the cancer was not the cause of the pain. The pain medication did pretty good, but of course doing too much of anything created weakness, which enhanced the pain. So all the activities were again stopped.
Following Team and church leadership discussion, it was decided to end the Street Team Ministry, as there was no one who had the time to do all that was required in preparation between the Tuesday nights that the Team was on the Streets.
Obviously, there was not the same opportunities to share the Love of Jesus Christ with people on the Street any more. But there are a few guys who I would still get together with, one at a time, to drive to appointments, or for lunch and a chat. With one friend, there is always lots of sharing Jesus, but the other two or still scratching the service ground, planting and watering the seeds,
Fast forward once again. On Sunday, February 12, 2017, I had a stroke while sitting at home. I praise Jesus that Barb, my wife, was with me, and called 9-1-1 immediately. Fire Department Personnel arrived quickly to start checking me out, with EMS shortly after them. A quick trip to the hospital, where the ER Team was waiting to do the necessary procedure to clear the blockages that caused the stroke.
It is quite the experience to realize the staff is running down the hallways of the ER pushing you on the stretcher to get to the room where the equipment is.
Once again, with the expertise of the medical staff, their God given wisdom, and the prayers of many, I came through this with no after affects, and no side affects.
The Staff, including nurses, Doctors, physiotherapist, occupational therapist, were all amazed at the quick recovery, each saying they had not seen one like this. When the Chief Occupational Therapist came in before my discharge, she told me that each of the other Therapists were talking about my recovery, and how she had to come check me out.
The week following my discharge, I had an appointment with our Family Doctor. After testing a few things, like, vision, touch, reflex, balance, her comment was, and for others in the vicinity to hear also, “you are a walking miracle”.
Now, I write all that, to say this. Since I know that our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, brought me through cancer, and a stroke, He must have something more for me to do in this life, more people to share His Love and Salvation with.
Therefore, continuing to call out to God, and remind Him of the Scripture below, that is what I hope my life will be, possibly more by written word than spoken word, but all by proclaiming GOD’S WORD.
So even to old age and gray hairs,
O God, do not forsake me,
until I proclaim your might to another generation,
your power to all those to come.
1 Chronicles 16:23-24
23 Sing to the Lord, all the earth!
Tell of his salvation from day to day.
24 Declare his glory among the nations,
his marvelous works among all the peoples!
8 Ask of me, and I will make the nations your heritage,
and the ends of the earth your possession.
13 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
14 How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!”
17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
Glad to tell you my Christian beliefs, based on the True Infallible Word of God.
I believe everything the Bible says, which begins with God being the Creator of all things.
I believe in the Triune God, which means I believe in:
God the Father,
God the Son, who is Jesus Christ,
God the Holy Spirit.
Woman was made from man, and since they had free will, they chose to disobey God. Because of disobedience there had to be a punishment, so the Three Persons of the Godhead had a plan.
The Bible says Jesus, who is Eternal God, willingly agreed to come to earth as a human. Jesus Christ was then conceived in Mary, a young virgin, by the Holy Spirit of God, therefore Jesus was God and man.
As Jesus grew, He did many miraculous things, including healing and raising people from the dead.
At the age of 33, Jesus willingly gave Himself to be crucified. His crucifixion was the penalty for sin for all mankind that we were unable to pay.
On the third day, Christ was raised to life, and was seen by many.
After forty days, Jesus ascended, returning to Heaven, and promised that the Holy Spirit would be here to live within each person who asked Jesus to forgive our sins.
So, a quick breakdown.
-we are all sinners
–there is punishment for sin we cannot pay.
–Jesus Christ paid for our sin by His death.
–by His resurrection, Jesus defeated death.
— when we admit we are sinners, and ask Jesus to forgive us and come into our lives, He does by the Holy Spirit.
–Holy Spirit will guide and help us live a life pleasing to Jesus.
–for all of us who have asked Jesus into our lives, when this body dies, our soul goes to heaven to be with Jesus.
The Bible says Jesus will return some day for all believers still alive, as well as for those who have passed away. At that time we all receive new bodies, free of sin, free of sickness, free of sorrow.
–We will spend forever with Jesus Christ.
If there are questions, check this statements with a Bible; visit a Bible believing, Bible teaching church, and speak to someone in leadership; speak to a true Christ Follower who you may know; contact me.