I’M A BLESSED MAN!!! God has given me three incredible GIFTS: The gift of TIME, the gift of a MESSAGE and the gift of a PLATFORM! By God’s grace, I plan to use the time I have left to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ from the platform of cancer!
The rest of this post is for you diehards willing to tolerate the musings of a dying man! ??
1. God has given me the gift of TIME
For much of my life I’ve lived with the expectation that I would enjoy a relatively long life. I’ve always been healthy, fit, reasonably careful with my diet and blessed with family on both sides who live well into their 80s and 90s. But barring a miraculous intervention and healing from God, I will likely be an exception to both my family genes and to my Life Insurance agent’s actuarial tables!
Job 14:5-7 says that “A person’s days are determined; You have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed.” And King David confirmed the same in Psalm 139:16 when he wrote, “Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”
Bottom line is I don’t know how much time God has determined or ordained for me but, as of this present moment, I still have TIME!! And, like the Apostle Paul said in Colossians 4:5, I intend to redeem every second of it (“buy up, ransom, or rescue from loss”) for the preaching of the gospel, for the strengthening and encouragement of the saints and for the advancement of the Kingdom of God!!
2. God has given me the gift of a MESSAGE
In 2 Corinthians 5:18-21, Paul communicates 3 profound truths:
1. God has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ!
2. God has given us the ministry of reconciliation!
3. God has commissioned us as ambassadors of the message of reconciliation!
This life-changing message of reconciliation, revealed in the Gospel, is made possible by Christ who has “reconciled to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross (Colossians 1:19-20).
In fact, it’s this MESSAGE of reconciliation that Jesus commanded every believer to carry to the world when He said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Suffice it to say, I’m a man on a God-appointed mission with a life-changing MESSAGE and I’m LOVING every minute of it!! ??
3. God has given me the gift of a PLATFORM
- The day after I received my 2nd PSA test result on Monday, April 24 and realized the gravity of my situation, I prayerfully considered my options in light of the aggressive nature of my cancer:1. I could curl up in a ball, be depressed and withdraw from life and ministry.
2. I could put on a brave front, continue to soldier on but privately question God’s goodness and love and, inevitably, sink into bitterness.
3. I could bargain with God or demand that He make good on my “blood-bought right” to physical healing (a teaching I don’t believe can be biblically defended nor historically demonstrated. I do, however, believe in God’s power to heal and appreciate those of you who are praying for my full recovery).
4. OR … and this is so GREAT and changes EVERYTHING … I could EMBRACE my cancer, fulfill my calling as an ambassador of the MESSAGE of reconciliation and live the EPIC LIFE from the PLATFORM of cancer!
The decision was easy once I reflected on the Apostle Paul’s example in Philippians 1:12-14 when he was imprisoned in Rome as an insurrectionist for preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ!
He didn’t curl up in a ball, sink into depression, engage in a martyr complex, bargain with God or demand his “blood-bought right” to deliverance. Instead, he EMBRACED his imprisonment as a PLATFORM to advance the Gospel of Jesus Christ! (The word “Advance” in the Greek is “Prokope”, which means to “beat one’s breast in grief but keeping moving forward anyway”)
Keep in mind the remarkable fruit that resulted from Paul’s willingness to embrace his unjust imprisonment and use it as a PLATFORM for the MESSAGE of reconciliation:
1. The gospel came to Rome!
2. The early church was emboldened “to speak the Word without fear”!
3. The saints throughout the ages became the beneficiaries of Paul’s 13 Epistles, which might never have been written had Paul not been imprisoned for his faith and, in turn, slowed down long enough to pen them!
Who would have ever imagined that so much GOOD could come from something so demonstrably EVIL?!?
Until a few months ago, my PLATFORMS included “Husband”, “Father”, “Pastor” and “Friend”. But NOW …. and this is amazing to me … BUT NOW, I have a new and exciting (definitely not boring) PLATFORM of cancer that I’m EMBRACING and absolutely LOVING! I could be wrong, but it may very well become the most impactful, persuasive and fruitful PLATFORM of my life!! ??
Yeah, I know … this FB post is almost as long as my sermons! Hahaha I’m not apologizing for it, but I will promise to make my next post a bit shorter and, hopefully, a bit more entertaining!! ??
In the meantime, Becky and I want to thank you again for your continued love, friendship and support! We can’t imagine running this leg of our race successfully without your prayers!
May God bless you and favor you for your lavish kindness toward us and may He grant you the grace to redeem the TIME as you share the MESSAGE of reconciliation from the unique PLATFORM He has chosen for you!
Your grateful brother and friend,
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