When I received the news that I had Malignant Fourth Stage Bowel Cancer it was like an earthquake hitting our family. We were shaken and the after effects nearly overwhelmed us.
“Therefore let all the faithful pray to you while you may be found; surely the rising of the mighty waters will not reach them.”psalm 32 v 6
In our generation because of good communications we hear news of worldwide events very soon after they happen. There are wars, persecutions, earthquakes, tsunamis and signs in the sun and moon. Many people have died in these disasters. Jesus predicted these events would happen.
“Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes, and there will be famines and plagues in many lands, and there will be terrifying things.”
“And there will be strange signs in the sun, moon, and stars. And here on earth the nations will be in turmoil, perplexed by the roaring seas and strange tides. People will be terrified at what they see coming upon the earth, for the powers in the heavens will be shaken. (Luke 21:10-11, 25-26 NLT)
People feel helpless and experience fear and distress as they watch these events unfold on their television screens. Jesus gave us an antidote in a few verses later, by advising us to keep alert and pray.
“Watch out! Don’t let your hearts be dulled by carousing and drunkenness, and by the worries of this life. Don’t let that day catch you unaware,
Keep alert at all times. And pray that you might be strong enough to escape these coming horrors and stand before the Son of Man.” (Luke 21:34, 36 NLT)
I faced death myself in 2010 when I was diagnosed with Malignant Bowel Cancer, fourth stage. A different Earthquake hit our home. Death came to our door. I faced death. My family faced death of a loved one. We all experienced the feelings that come along with helplessness, fear, distress and looming death. We were weak. Unless something changed the prognosis for me was death. Man has no power over death. I realised I was dying. I had no desire for anything in this world. I was prepared to leave my husband and family behind.
But there is one who has the power over death. It is Jesus. He died on the cross and took the keys of death and hell off Satan.
In the previous years of my life I had tried to pray and read the Word of God each day. We prayed together as a family. I tried to obey him God as far I knew how to. In my hour of need God turned up. God made my husband and family strong. They prayed for me. My husband and I had taught our children how to pray. God heard their prayer. Psalm 102 describes what happened.
“LORD, hear my prayer! Listen to my plea! Don’t turn away from me in my time of distress. Bend down to listen, and answer me quickly when I call to you.
My heart is sick, withered like grass, and I have lost my appetite. Because of my groaning, I am reduced to skin and bones.
My life passes as swiftly as the evening shadows. I am withering away like grass. But you, O LORD, will sit on your throne forever. Your fame will endure to every generation. You will arise and have mercy on Jerusalem — and now is the time to pity her, now is the time you promised to help.
He will listen to the prayers of the destitute. He will not reject their pleas.
Let this be recorded for future generations, so that a people not yet born will praise the LORD.
Tell them the LORD looked down from his heavenly sanctuary. He looked down to earth from heaven to hear the groans of the prisoners, to release those condemned to die.
And so the LORD’s fame will be celebrated in Zion, his praises in Jerusalem, when multitudes gather together and kingdoms come to worship the LORD.
He broke my strength in midlife, cutting short my days. But I cried to him, “O my God, who lives forever, don’t take my life while I am so young!
Long ago you laid the foundation of the earth and made the heavens with your hands. They will perish, but you remain forever; they will wear out like old clothing.
You will change them like a garment and discard them. But you are always the same; you will live forever.
The children of your people will live in security. Their children’s children will thrive in your presence.” (Psalms 102:1-2, 4-5, 11-13, 17-28 NLT)
I am recording this today to tell you and the children yet unborn that God in heaven, who made the earth and heavens reached down from his throne and delivered me from death. He did not turn away from me as it says in verse one. “Don’t turn away in my hour of distress.”
You may be at home reading this, you may have never heard that God answers prayer today. He does. He is interested in you. He loves you. Are you distressed about what you see coming on the earth, troubles within and without. Begin to pray and and talk to God as you would a friend. Begin to read the scriptures. I am telling you this is the best medicine you could take. It will make you strong. It is guaranteed to bring healing. What God did for me he will do for you.
It flowed down the center of the main street. On each side of the river grew a tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, with a fresh crop each month. The leaves were used for medicine to heal the nations. Revelation 22 v 2
May the words I share with you today bring healing from fear, distress and anxiety. As Jesus said “Look up.”
So when all these things begin to happen, stand and look up, for your salvation is near!” (Luke 21:28 NLT)