These past couple of months have been some of the hardest of my life.
But God’s faithfulness never dimmed. At the end of November was Dad was admitted to hospital. After doing some tests, it turned out my Dad had his fifth cancer. The next three weeks were hard. I tried to see my Dad as often as I could. After receiving his diagnosis - a very aggressive difficult to treat cancer - he told us this is the end. My Dad had been suffering for at least 5 years. He was tired. I can’t tell you how difficult it is to see someone almost every day die without hope. My Dad didn’t know Christ. I didn’t know what to do.
However, God in his great love gave me a twinkle of light in this darkness.
I was moved to ask my Dad about Jesus. Now my Dad told me some weird things but - but, he said the teachings of Jesus are most important. God was acting my Father. So I thought, if Dad likes Jesus’ teachings - what does Jesus have to say about himself? We opened God’s Word together. God moved. Little by little God’s Word breathed live into my father. Eventually, he told me on Tuesday, December 18 that he was 80% of the way of trusting in Jesus. That night in his pain and suffering, he was moved by the Holy Spirit. My Dad thought what is 20% faith? My Dad trusted Jesus that night.
What a difference it made to my father to have the Holy Spirit in him. My father had a new outlook - a new hope. God’s Word continued to breathe life.
I was reminded by the Holy Spirit of His Word:
16 … Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Cor 4)
In the New Year, God’s Word gave my Dad the conviction that he must be baptized. So invited Ian and Phil - who are the Elders of Lightway Church - to interview my Dad. My Dad gave his testimony to them. Phil and Ian affirmed the presence of the Holy Spirit in my Dad and he was baptized. Upon the screen is a picture of my Dad and I. My Dad was baptized on Thursday January 17th. My Dad told me that being baptized was the most amazing experience of his life. All his doubts had fled. He was now ready. He was ready to meet Jesus. Now, I got a call on Friday morning. Now is the time to say goodbye. Melissa and I went up. My Dad was close and he was sleeping. We read God’s Word to him and prayed for him. We said our goodbyes. The Lord Jesus took my Dad home yesterday morning.
I want to tell you a few things about my Dad in closing.
My Dad expressed his deepest regret he was never able to meet our church family. He also told Phil, Ian and I about how for 57 years he had filled his life with junk. My Dad told us that his life had a great whole in his life. Nothing could fill it. But when, my Dad accepted Jesus - he felt complete. He felt accepted and loved. So I want to invite you today. If you never had put your trust in Jesus - why not do it now? Stop filling your God-shaped hole with junk. Jesus saves.
This is what God has been doing in my life. Only he has given me peace. Only he has got me though. Praise God. Praise God in the highest!