Justin continues to experience anxiety over participating in activities he used to enjoy very much. He is particularly anxious over joining his class for the Kindergarten graduation ceremony this coming Monday. He is afraid of being away from me, afraid of people looking at him, afraid that he will vomit or just won’t feel well.
Today he said, “Mommy, it doesn’t really matter if I go to graduation.”
And in the big picture, the grand scheme of things, he is right. He has completed the necessary academic requirements, and will move on to first grade whether he wears a cap and gown or not. So why am I pushing him to go to rehearsals and participate Monday night? Well, the same reason I have pushed him to attend school and perform in The Little Engine That Could and play as a guest on Michael’s baseball team.
Because I don’t give up. And I am trying to teach our boys the same. And cancer does not get to tell us that we should just sit around and be defeated by anxiety and pain and discomfort.
I don’t give up because I believe that our perseverance through suffering glorifies God. I am able to persist because of His grace and the hope that God will use the testament of my perseverance to draw people to Him. After all, it is only by His grace that I am able to step forward, despite several obstacles. Without His grace, my current trials would turn me into a crazy person running from one thing to another, searching in vain for peace. (Trust me, I know this about myself) So I must conclude that God allows suffering because His grace is magnified!
And why would I want to do that? Magnify His grace? Glorify Him and not myself? Because God offers ETERNAL LIFE through His Son Jesus Christ! My heart desperately desires for my friends to know that and believe that and become His own.
There is nothing else in this world that can offer such incredible hope. If you live for work, people, money, or whatever, those things will eventually disappoint or pass away. God is everlasting and the hope through His son Jesus Christ is eternal. Romans 4:18-25, 5:1-5:
Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed and so became the father of many nations, just as it had been said to him, “So shall your offspring be.” Without weakening in his faith, he faced the fact that his body was as good as dead—since he was about a hundred years old—and that Sarah’s womb was also dead. Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.” The words “it was credited to him” were written not for him alone, but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.