“On the other hand, all the images and thoughts we’ve been given are positive.” It was last Tuesday morning. Jerry and I were out for a drive in the country before his noon oncology appointment. It’s been six months since treatment for his “moderately aggressive” prostate cancer ended. The prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test results we’d hear would define our future.
I’d been fearful that morning, my characterological anxiety leading to primitive emotions. “I know it’s not true, intellectually, but if God doesn’t heal, it feels like it means he doesn’t love me.” “If this is spiritual warfare and God ‘loses,’ what does that mean?”
In one sense, I was okay with whatever happened. I’ve been through so much, I know God can carry me through anything. Even if God ‘lost’ this battle, he’s already won the war. Jesus’ sacrifice defines God’s love, not whether Jerry lives or dies.
It helped my struggle, that morning, to remind myself of Jerry’s image during recent prayer at the International Healing Rooms in Spokane: “I saw God strangling the cancer cells.” I remembered the sentence, during worship, a few months ago: “He has twenty-five more years.”
But it was a challenge, that morning. Some mornings are irremediably challenging. We’re anxious, scared, full of fearful images. I’d have loved it if I could have just leaned my head on Jesus’ chest, resting. I couldn’t. His perfect love has not yet cast out all my fear. (1 John 4:18)
And yet, God had hold of me. He’s committed to each one of us who walk with him. Our sinful anxieties do not change his commitment to us. Glory to God.
And, glory to God, PSA is undetectable. No cancer cells left. Yes.
Father, we are grateful. And beyond this particular grace, we are grateful for your unchanging, eternal commitment. Thank you.