At the time, Dad was batting Leukemia and had just received some devastating news. As painful as it is to read this again, I'm so glad I wrote it down.
Today as I remember my father on the day He went home to Heaven seven years ago, I will celebrate the gift of hope we have in Jesus. Even in the face of death we can rest in His love.
You know I feel like I was just here about 15 years ago. In this town going back and forth to this hospital praying for God to save my dad's life. This time feels so different.
On one hand I am so thankful to God for the last 15 years of "extra" time I've been given. My dad was alive to move me into my college dorm room, talk me through a broken heart, "vet" my future husband, give me away to the "the marine" (his nickname for Chad) listen to the first cries of each of my children and have dinner in my first home.
God gave breath to dad's body to be an instrument of the gospel for the last 15 years, and has given our family an inheritance in The Lord. We have a place of ministry and are able to reach out to a part of our city that was dying in sin.
While it has always been my prayer for God to take us all to glory from the field it seems we are dealing with a much more painful reality today.
This morning I was up early with dad at the hospital. He wanted to be up and dressed for when the oncologist came in to visit with him. He called it having his "game face" on. As caring as the oncologist was, this news he gave was not good. I watched my dad's smile fade. Every unfamiliar medical term came like a blow to dad's chest and he seemed to be almost sinking into his bed.
The doctor was still so impressed by dad's testimony and attitude that he left emotional and shared how he would also be praying for dad's full recovery.
When the room was clear dad looked at me and through his tears reminded me how much he loved me. He told me he doesn't want me to worry. Then he said, "I'm gonna fight this thing with everything I've got!"
He sat up and and turned around on his bed and said, "I feel like the devil's throwing arrows at me. He wants me to curse God and give up. I feel like he wants me to believe that God doesn't love me. But I KNOW He does!"
In that moment I witnessed what our walk with God all comes down to. Through all the pain that life can bring. When all of the weakness of man is exposed. If it was me, sitting there, having received such news about my own life could I sit up and testify to the Love of my Heavenly Father?
At this hour in my life, in the life of our family and the ministry His Love is what we have. Hold fast. Let us all finish well. Hebrews 12:1