Don’t waste your cancer! Or any trial for that matter…..

Cancer, Christianity, Jesus, suffering

In 2006, Pastor John Piper announced that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer. He responded to his diagnosis with the following:

“This news has, of course, been good for me. The most dangerous thing in the world is the sin of self-reliance and the stupor of worldliness. The news of cancer has a wonderfully blasting effect on both. I thank God for that. The times with Christ in these days have been unusually sweet.”

These challenging words are an excerpt from a letter to Pastor John Piper’s church.  Click here to read Pastor Piper’s entire letter to his church announcing his trial with cancer. It will probably rock you a little bit, as it did me.

As an American Christian, most of the time I have the wrong attitude about trials. We often feel forsaken and forgotten when we have a serious illness or undergo some sort of major trial. I have definitely felt that way lately as I’ve had an ongoing health trial. Piper reminds us that this isn’t the case, and he gives some great practical applications in his 16 page booklet Don’t Waste Your Cancer. You can download the PDF form and read it for free from desiringgod.org website.

This is a great booklet if you are suffering with a chronic or terminal illness, or if a loved one of yours is afflicted with sickness. It may just give you a huge shift in the way that you view trials, especially medical ones.

If you want your life to count

Christianity, Jesus, Uncategorized

To make your life count, you don’t have to have a high I.Q. or good looks. You don’t have to be from a good family, or good school. You just have to know a few basic things, and be gripped by them, and be willing to live and die for them.  One of the saddest realities is that many of us are not concerned with our life making a difference. Some of us only want to be liked, to have a great job, nice house, and financial security.

These strong words are from John Piper, a well-known theologian, preacher and author. He isn’t just saying this stuff for shock value. It’s true, if you want your life to count, Piper says, you just have to know a few basic things, and be gripped by them, and be willing to live and die for them. These “few basic things” are the realities that we are made for more than our life here on earth; God made us to know Him, and to make Him known to others.

Following Jesus requires more than working hard to have a fat bank account, being nice to people, or volunteering at a soup kitchen. If you want your life to count, Jesus said, you must lay down your agenda and pick up His, following Him. (paraphrase of Matthew 16:24) He laid down His life for us, now it’s my turn.

Do you want your life to count? I do. I’m going to start by surrendering my will and agenda today, and to pick up Jesus’.