It was a beautiful warm morning. Brendan and I went for a drive to Newcastle Co Down on Sunday last. We stopped at Dundrum market along the way. I remembered many days bringing our children there, walking around the stall holders and stopping for a chat. We ended the morning with sausages and chips. It was good to be back. Corona virus closed down the market for two years.
I met a man later in the day called Gordon. Brendan told him I was healed of cancer twelve years ago. He responded to say he had cancer eleven years ago. I wanted to hear more.
He was in hospital for tests. The doctor told him he had third stage throat cancer. He had a tumour the size of a walnut. The doctors said it was too difficult to operate. When Gordon heard what the doctors said he didn’t panic. He began to consider his situation. He wasn’t ready to die. He wanted to live but the doctor’s forecast was grim.
Gordon had been a preacher of the gospel in his youth. In his work place he found young men would come to him for advice. He would always be there to listen to their troubles and encourage them over their difficulties . He would nudge them towards Jesus.
Now he was in trouble. In Psalm 91 God’s Word promises He will be with you in trouble. With long life will I satisfy you. God reached down to Gordon in his hour of distress.
In the next weeks the tumour grew to the size of an orange. The doctors decided to operate even though there was a risk of interfering with important arteries to the brain. They removed the tumour.
Gordon showed me a photo taken after the operation. There were two long lines of staples across the side of his neck like the photo below. I looked for the scars. His wounds had healed and were barely visible. He endured further treatments in hospital. He had the will to live. Eleven years on he is healed of cancer. Because Gordon helped others in their troubles God reached down and helped him in his trouble.
I thought of the scripture, By his stripes you are healed. Jesus shed his blood from his wounds so our wounds can be healed. If we believe in the great physician we will be healed.
Gordon continues to have a listening ear to young men. He doesn’t condemn but helps each one practically and perhaps says a quiet prayer for them. God is faithful. As we live for Him he cares for us.
God not only died to forgive our sins, he heals and restores our lives. He helps us to live again despite despair and hardship. There is no other God who is merciful. He is worthy to be praised. Amen.