HIS FACE IN MY JOURNEY
"Get up," Jesus told him, "pick up your bedroll and walk". Instantly the man got well,
picked up his bedroll, and started to walk. John 5:8,9
Words are powerful. They can bless and they can curse. Jesus healed people simply by speaking
life (e.g., Mt 8:3; Lk 4:35; Jn 5:8). Zechariah's words revealed his lack of faith and left him speechless
(Luke 1:18-22). On several occasions I was caught off guard by insensitive comments that called my
healing into question. I wish I didn't have to reveal my cancer history to every medical professional that
I visit, because they are always the worst culprits! A doctor once commented, “So, the tamoxifen is keeping
your cancer at bay?”(No! There is no cancer LEFT to be kept at bay!) Another doctor asked me if my cancer
was in remission. (Remission? No way!! I am cured, baby. CURED, as in p-e-r-m-a-n-e-n-t-l-y healed!) Someone
in my church asked me how I was doing, saying “I heard your cancer came back.” (What? It did? Oh my God! Oh
my God!) My internal response to the latter really concerned me. For a brief moment, I thought this woman knew
something that I didn’t. It shook me.
As I pondered these experiences, I was struck by the vulnerability of my heart. I had been working hard to believe in my healing and was caught off guard every time someone's words questioned that healing. But the reality is that after a wounding like cancer, heart scars remain. And scars are tender. When they are touched a certain way, particularly with something sharp (like a tongue!) we feel pain. And so it’s not that my faith is weak or that my healing is incomplete. My scars are simply a consequence of the reality of my experience. They keep me in a
place of humility, reminding me of my vulnerability and continued need of my
Savior. There are times when I need Him to comfort me and fill me with a fresh dose
of grace and assurance. Oftentimes He nudges me to remember all that He has spoken
about my experience with cancer -- scriptures, promises, the prophetic -- powerful words that
keep me in a place of confident hope.
So, I need not revisit the issue of my healing every time someone touches my scar. Rather, I can reach for His hand, breathe in His peace and replay His voice in my heart that says this stuff does not apply to me. For, the Lord has already spoken. And His words are the most powerful of all.