Thursday, February 13, 2014

Another Positive Side Of Cancer

A Better Understanding Of Love


Charles H.Spurgeon saidI venture to say that the greatest earthly blessing that God can give to any of us is health, with the exception of sickness.
Sickness has frequently been of more use to the saints of God than health has.
I would add, that sickness or cancer has a marvelous use in turning people, believers and nonbelievers to God and all that He has done, which brings them into a great relationship with the Almighty God. It also brings them to a better understanding of love. God’s love, and the love from friends and family. It can bring to you a better understanding of love.

A. Towards God. B. Towards life. C. Towards others

Today we are going to spend a few moments on the love towards God.
Many cry out to God in their lives because there is none other to turn to. Better have cancer crying out to God than having health and neglecting God and eternity.
All of a sudden God has a place in one’s  life because there is no one else to turn to. Rightly so because God is the only one that can do anything about the feelings about sickness or to prepare for the future.

1.     The Need

 Love is as needful for the spiritual life, as blood is for the natural life. In neither case can the one exist without the other. Yet, though all the regenerate have love to God, not all of them are equally aware of the fact, nor are all Christians sensible of it in the same way at all times. But a personal persuasion of our love to God is most desirable. Those things which the more deeply concern us, ought the more seriously to affect us. None should deny its existence, simply because they are dissatisfied with the degree or intensity of their love.

2.     The Extent

Love to God consists in a satisfaction in having Him as the soul's all-sufficient portion, of a delight in Him, of satisfaction in Him. Sometimes it is expressed in longings after and yearnings for Him. "At night my soul longs for You. Indeed, my spirit within me seeks You diligently!" (Isa 26:9). Sometimes it is declared in speaking well of Him to others (Psalm 34:1-3; Mal 3:16). Often it is breathed forth in prayer (Psalm 84:2), and in praise (Song 5:10). Occasionally it is revealed in exclamations of wonderment (1 John 3:1). It is manifested in sincere efforts to please Him, making His glory the purpose and end of our actions, and therefore in detestation of all sin. It appears at its best when, in a time of sore trial or sickness, and temporal difficulties its possessor "rejoices in the LORD" (Hab 3:17-18).

Suffering and sorrow are a part of life. Knowing this, however, doesn't make it any easier to cope when you find yourself in the midst of the deepest, darkest trials of faith. However  when all we have left is Jesus, we still have everything we need. If you are suffering to the point of despair, let these words of encouragement help you hang on to your faith and to turn to God for encouragement and strength to have victory.


Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The Hope For Healing From Cancer

Knowing the power of God and the power of prayer, we have the privilege to hope for healing. None the less we must remember 3 truths about the Hope for healing.
1.To Heal Or Not To Heal Is To The Glory Of God
Sickness unto the glory of God
John 11:4
4 "But when Jesus heard it he said, “This illness does not lead to
death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”  Listen, God provides grace to help in time of need. So in the weakness and difficulty of illness we cry out to Him and He can answer in this regard in one of, or a combination of ways.
First, God can heal miraculously.
2. Healing Could Be Through Medicine Or Miracles.
Second God can heal through means. He can and still is a God of miracles
He can and does use medicines, therapies, exercise, counsel, surgery, rest, dietary change and a whole host of other ways to ameliorate, change, improve or remove the issues which people face in their sickness.
It is God who created every human being, and who put in us the
ability to think –so He is the author of the discoveries that
medicine has made. This is part of the mandate in Genesis 2 to subdue the earth and rule over it.
3. Healing Is Sometimes Replaced By Grace
Third, God gets glory when He grants us grace when He says ‘no –you must live with this.’
Listen, the very man who raised Eutychus from death in Acts 20 also wrote so clearly about his own experience:
2 Corinthians 12:7-10
"Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me."
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”
Do you know when someone will really understand God’s plan?
When we are in His presence and in His Glory. Then will we say and understand that He had a good plan for us.

Monday, December 16, 2013

The Positive Side Of Cancer Helps Us Focus On Healing


The positive side of cancer
helps us focus on healing.

There comes a time in most people’s life when we find  ourselves
battling with an illness or sickness of one type or another.  For
some there are small bouts with minor ailments, but for others
very significant battles with chronic issues, like cancer.
It is seldom that a person is not touched by sickness over an entire
lifetime, and virtually impossible that we are not touched by the
illnesses of those within our sphere of care and influence.
God has a plan even when it is sickness or cancer.
James 5: 13-16

Charles Spurgeon once said, “Health is a gift from God, but sickness is a gift greater still.” Throughout his time in this world, Spurgeon suffered with various physical ailments that eventually took his life prematurely. He longed to be well but he recognized the supreme value of being sick and he thanked God for it because it was his pain that caused him to desperately draw near to God.

Let’s quote Spurgeon again he said

“I venture to say that the greatest earthly blessing that God can give to any of us is health, with the exception of sickness. Sickness has frequently been of more use to the saints of God than health has.”

What is he saying if not that we actually
learn more in the place of pain and suffering and disease than we
often do in the place of comfort and ease.
So when we hear a quote like that from Spurgeon we must not
Pass it off as rationalization and pie in the sky avoidance of the
reality of pain and loss here, but the recognition that we were
made for eternity, not time, we will live eternally, not only in time
in these mortal bodies, and that therefore the reality of our
eternal life and heavenly home IS far better than even the best
day we ever experienced here on earth.


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

It Took Cancer To Make Me Look At My Life, And Live.

It took cancer to make me look at my life and how
I should live it. (A positive side to cancer.)


"I love life and do everything I can to live each day better than the day before. I know I sound like a greeting card," Gary Bonacker says, "but it's a good way to live."

In the spring of 2003, Gary was diagnosed with a stage 2 brain tumor. But just 10 months after surgery that removed only half of the tumor, Gary rode alongside Lance Armstrong at the Ride for the Roses cycling event in Austin, Texas.

"It was something I'll remember for the rest of my life," Gary says. It inspired him to go home to Bend, Oregon, and start his own cycling event to raise money for cancer. The Tour des Chutes has grown from 750 riders in 2005 to over 1,100 riders for the 2010 ride. The money raised during the event helps fund the cancer survivorship program at St. Charles Cancer Center, which provides medical care for many of the cancer patients in Bend and other nearby communities.

The years since have not been easy. Gary was diagnosed with his brain tumor in 2003, and he still battles it every day. He requires ongoing treatment to slow the growth of the tumor and is on anti-seizure medicines. With fatigue and multiple health problems, he has had to limit his work a great deal.

"There's not a day that I don't go into a dark place, thinking about things I might miss," he says. "But my family, workplace, and friends, and my event help me through it. My other coping strategy is to read about research and learn everything that I can about my disease. I've surprised doctors with information they weren't even aware of.

"I have heard people with cancer say it is a gift," he jokes. "Well, I would take that gift back, if possible."

Gary continues to do his best and move on with his life. Besides planning his annual fundraiser, he says that spending time with his family, gardening, and fishing are his best coping strategies. And, of course, cycling.

"What's sad is that it took getting cancer to make me look at my life and how I should live it," Gary says. "We take a lot for granted. But I don't any longer." (From National Cancer Institute)


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Cancer Introduces A Person To Hope.(Positive Side to Cancer)

    We are introduced to hope when we have cancer because from that point on we hope that we will get better or we hope we can have the grace to go through it victoriously.
A Definition of Hope
What is hope? Is it a wishy washy maybe or a kind of unsure optimism? The modern idea of hope is “to wish for, to expect, but without certainty of the fulfillment; to desire very much, but with no real assurance of getting your desire.”
“Hope” in Scripture means“a strong and confident expectation.”

In summary, hope is the confident expectation, the sure certainty that what God has promised in the Word is true, has occurred, and or will in accordance with God’s sure Word.
A Description of Hope. If we were to describe HOPE we could say that…..
It is Dynamic or Active.

June Hunt has an interesting note on the use the anchor to symbolize hope...

For centuries, anchors have been a symbol of hope. This emblem was especially significant to the early persecuted church. Many etchings of anchors were discovered in the catacombs of Rome, where Christians held their meetings in hiding. Threatened with death because of their faith, these committed Christians used the anchor as a disguised cross and as a marker to guide the way to their secret meetings. Located beneath the ancient city, 600 miles of these tomb-like burial chambers served as a place of refuge during perilous times of persecution. Thus, the anchor—found even on some tombstones today—has become the symbol of guaranteed hope for the eternal security of true Christians. (Biblical Counseling Keys on Hope: The Anchor of Your Soul)

It has been said that man can live about forty days without food, about three days without water, and about eight minutes without air—but only one second without hope! (Anon)
The Italian poet, Dante, in Divine Comedy, penned this inscription over the world of the dead...

“Abandon all hope,
you who enter here!”
One might paraphrase Dante's dismal declaration...
Life without Christ is a hopeless end
but life in Christ is an endless hope

If our hope is biblical and based on God's promises, it will put us in gear.
It has Results
(1) It changes how we see ourselves. It changes us into pilgrim persons, people who see this life as temporary sojourn.
(2) It changes what we value. Hope, if biblical, makes us heavenly minded rather than earthly minded.
(3) It affects what we do with our lives—our talents, time, treasures.

   The Christian life, if it is grasped according to God's truth, is a magnificent obsession with an eternal hope, a hope that does not lead to an escapist attitude, but to the pursuit of life on a whole new dimension. It makes you bullish, as we might say today, on the potentials of this life as stewards of God. It gives us power to live courageously, to be all God has called us to be in Christ.

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Cancer survivors get involved with cancer-related activities.

Staci Wright

Helping kids regain their self image

Staci Wright Staci Wright

Staci Wright was in the eighth grade when she began having terrible headaches. The 13-year-old girl had been healthy, happy, and active all her life, playing soccer since kindergarten. But life changed overnight when she was diagnosed with Ewing sarcoma, a type of bone cancer, in her skull.

The treatment was 10 months of chemotherapy, along with 5 weeks of radiation. "For me, the hardest part of the cancer battle was that my pain was hurting my whole family," she recalls. "It put so much stress on my parents and older brother. Luckily my sister was too young to really realize what was going on."

During it all, she tried to stay positive and upbeat, doing her best to live life as a normal kid. The support of her family and friends helped her get through many painful times during the year. But even so, there were days when she felt overwhelmed.

"Sometimes it felt like I was all by myself in this battle," she says. "I realized others couldn't fathom what I was going through, and so there were times when I just wanted to be left alone."

Hair loss from chemotherapy isn't easy for any patient. But for a teenage girl, it can be devastating. Staci felt sad and depressed with losing her hair and didn't want to go to school. "I had a really hard time with my hair loss. But there was nothing I could do about it except move on to more important things, like surviving," she says. Unfortunately Katie's radiation killed all the hair cells on a patch of skin on the back of her head, causing her hair loss to be permanent.

Fortunately her mother, Debbie, learned of a hair system that stays in place, made of real hair attached to material that looks like a scalp. Staci loved her new hair but was concerned about the other kids she met at the children's hospital who were still dealing with baldness. "It's tough for people my age to lose their hair," she says. "They lose their self-esteem with it."

Life is something
that can’t be
taken for granted.

That's when Staci and Debbie decided to do something to help these kids. They established the Angel Hair Foundation Exit Disclaimer, a non-profit organization that purchases hair systems for kids and teens. Through hard work and getting the word out, the foundation is thriving and helping kids with cancer everywhere feel better about losing their hair.

Staci is now doing well, playing soccer, hanging out with her friends, and attending the University of Oregon. She believes she'll always have insecurities about her permanent hair loss but trusts that she'll know how to deal with them when they arise. She's excited about what life has to bring to her and plans to become a dietician. More important, she knows that true friends will love her no matter what her hair looks like.

"To me, life is something that can't be taken for granted. I can't be that little shy girl that doesn't push the limit every once in a while," she says. "I often think about how cancer affected my life, about how I developed as a person through this experience. Cancer made me realize what is important in life and made me the more mature person I am today. (From "National Cancer Institute")

Monday, November 18, 2013

Cancer Helps Us Understand The Whys Of Life

Cancer Helps Us Understand The Whys Of Life

Why Chaos,
Why Death,
INTRO: Human suffering is real; we all experience it. When it touches us or those we love, it is no longer an abstract idea to leave to the theologians but a grim and perplexing reality: How can we explain human suffering in a universe created by a good and omnipotent God?
 Paul’s response;
Paul had responded to the question of God’s fairness. But he didn’t answer the question directly. His response to his readers was to inquire— Why are you even asking? Paul’s response was a stinging rebuke: “Who are, you, O man, to talk back to God? Shall what is formed say to him who formed it,‘Why did you make me like this?’”(Romans 9:20).
But don’t we have the right to ask God: “Why did you make me so I would get cancer or suffer a stroke? Why wasn’t I a clay pot with a different design?” Paul refused to directly answer“Why?” He defended God’s wisdom and justice. Paul wrote: “Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!” (Romans 11:33).
We would be vain and na├»ve to think that we could understand and explain what the most knowledgeable and godly have found perplexing. Yet the Scriptures do make several helpful truths, which must be accepted even if not totally understood. The first truth is…..
I. God Permits Suffering
First, the Bible affirms that God has chosen to permit suffering. God is the designer of a plan that allowed for sin and suffering. Though God does not approve of sin and its consequences (suffering), nor is He responsible for it, it is here by His permission. In His omniscience (His full knowledge of everything), He knew that the plan He chose, even though it allowed for sin and suffering, ultimately would bring about the greatest good and glory. Nowhere does the Bible suggest that God was overcome by the power of sin; that suffering was forced into His universe against His will. No. He is the sovereign who "works all things after the counsel of His will" (Eph. 1:11).
Yet, at the same time, the Bible makes it very clear that all human suffering is the result of the Fall. Our suffering is directly related to the curse that came upon the earth as the result of sin. With sin came corruption, suffering and death (see Gen. 2:17; 3:17; Rom. 5:12; 8:20-22). The 2ndtruth is….
II. Christians Suffer.
We come to the reality that we often find the most troubling. God has not chosen to spare even His children from the consequences of living in a fallen world. Living godly lives does enable the believer to avoid some of the unnecessary suffering that others bring upon themselves by ignoring God's moral and spiritual laws. Yes Christians do get sick and die. Christians are robbed and raped. They have accidents. They lose loved ones in fires, earthquakes and hurricanes. And it seems at times that believers suffer more than the wicked. (See the testimony of Asaph in Psalm 73.)
In addition to the natural calamities of life, believers suffer persecution because of Jesus Christ. The New Testament does not proclaim the health and wealth "gospel" that is so popular in 20th-century evangelicalism. The sooner we accept the reality that we are living in a fallen world with its suffering, the sooner we will be able to get on with living effectively for the Lord.
 The 3rd truth is…
III. God Turns It To Our Good
The third biblical truth laid out for us in the Bible is this: whatever calamity befalls us, God has our eternal good in view. God may not have a specific lesson to teach us every time we suffer, but He does have a good purpose in view. In Romans 8:28 we read: "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose." We quote this verse in times of suffering and rightly so. God has designed all of life (including suffering) to conform us to the image of His Son. Nothing that we suffer in this life can prevent this process from reaching its divinely purposed outcome.
So, first, it helps us to remember, as we ponder the mystery of pain and evil, that God did not create them. Though suffering isn’t good, God can use it to accomplish good.
He does this by fulfilling His promise in Romans 8:28: “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.”
Notice that the verse doesn’t say God causes evil and suffering, just that he promises to cause good to emerge. And notice that the verse doesn’t say we all will see immediately or even in this life how God has caused good to emerge from a bad circumstance. Remember, we only see things dimly in this world. And notice that God doesn’t make this promise to everyone. He makes the solemn pledge that he will take the bad circumstances that befall us and cause good to emerge if we’re committed to following Him.
The Old Testament gives us a great example in the story of Joseph, who went through terrible suffering, being sold into slavery by his brothers, unfairly accused of a crime and falsely imprisoned. Finally, after a dozen years, he was put in a role of great authority where he could save the lives of his family and many others.
This is what he said to his brothers in Genesis 50:20: “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.” And if you’re committed to God, He promises that He can and will take whatever pain you’re experiencing and draw something good from it.
He can and He will. God can use our suffering to draw us to Himself, to mold and sharpen our character, to influence others for Him – He can draw something good from our pain in a myriad of ways…if we trust and follow Him.
The word of God is the only answer we have to understanding certain facts that we find in scripture.           1. Expect suffering. Realize that in a fallen world suffering is the abnormal
           normality (see 1 Pet. 2:12-14).
2. Realize that God in control; nothing can happen unless He allows it. We should be humble before Him (see Ex. 4:11; Job 40:2; Provide. 6:4; Isa. 45:7; Jer. 49:19; Amos 3:6; Rom. 9:20-23).
3. Understand that though God is sovereign and man is responsible for his actions, suffering is a product of the Fall (see II Sam. 12:11; 16:21,22;Acts 4:27,28; Rev. 13:2,7,8).
4. Accept the reality that God allows suffering for good and necessary reasons: to prepare us to comfort others (see II Cor. 1:4-6); to teach us to trust in Him and not in ourselves (see 1:9; 4:7,16, 18; 12:1-10); to turn our hearts toward heaven (see 5:1-4); to develop maturity (see James 1:1-12); to discipline us for sinful behavior (see I Cor. 11:30); and to judge wickedness (see Ps. 37:12,13).
When this biblical understanding of suffering grips us, it will bring trusting obedience and confident hope in the faithfulness of God. As Dorothy Love once put it, "Our trust is completely in our blessed Lord." "For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Rom. 8:38,39).

Conclusion: So when tragedy strikes, as it will; when suffering comes, as it will; when you’re wrestling with pain, as you will – and when you make the choice to run into His arms, here’s what you’re going to discover: you’ll find peace to deal with the present, you’ll find courage to deal with your future, and you’ll find the incredible promise of eternal life in heaven