I got a call from my doctor today. I had a lump removed from my right breast and we have been waiting for the results of a biopsy.
I knew because it was the doctor, himself, and not a nurse... that it wasn't just a cyst.
Ductal Carcinoma in Situ. That means it is stage 0, sometimes even considered "pre-cancer" but not in my case since it did lump. This means that it did not spread, it was contained (what in situ means). The good news in the same day that I was diagnosed with cancer, I was also told that I was cancer free. A lumpectomy was all that was needed.
Through this process, I've learned a lot about myself. I am not afraid like I would have been years ago. I also am not mad at God. Sometimes when we face health challenges, or challenges in general, we think God has this master plan and this ailment is just part of that plan. I don't think that God decided that I was going to have cancer. I think it is simply a result of a sin fallen world that we live in. God knew it was going to happen and his blessings have showered down.
The blessing is we caught it early.
That a team of people surrounded me and helped me.
That people prayed for us. That God's hand was throughout it all.
And in the end it is simple, I have the chance to Glorify God above all else.
Many know that I am pursing ordination. This process is to fine tune the candidates for ordination through the Nazarene church and prepare us for ministry. Sanctification is something that I have written many essays on. I have discussed it with my mentor pastor and have studied it. I have a lot of head knowledge of it. But I don't think my heart understood it until this week.
Initial sanctification happens at salvation. When we say, "Yes, I need God!" You accept Jesus Christ as God and Savior. That confession of faith starts a process of sanctification. This is a process, a pursuit. You progress a bit in this walk and the next stage is entire sanctification. Now, this step is a crucial one in the Nazarene church because a lot of other denominations overlook or deny it.
Entire sanctification is the process that you decided to give yourself entirely up to God. Pastor Bob has said that it is like giving God a key to every room in the house and when He goes in to clean up that room you allow Him and show obedience. You don't hold back a key. You give Him free range of you. Another example of this is Phoebe Palmer, a pillar of the Nazarene Church, who after losing multiple children she realized that her life was centered around those that she loved and not God. She decided that from that point on to serve God alone. She wasn't going to hold anything back from Him anymore based on earthly events.
Entire sanctification... is when we decide that we are going to follow and serve God no matter what. That we are going to live in His goodness and abide by His Truth. That we allow Him to continue Good Work in us and help us in becoming Holy like He is Holy. That even when we are diagnosed with cancer or we lose a child... that we continue in faith.
The process of entire sanctification proceeds until glorification. When we no longer feel the sting of the sin fallen world and we are in His amazing full presence, heaven.
When we lost our first son, Jonathan, I experienced entire sanctification... when I decided that NOTHING would stop me from following and serving Christ. Today, I reflect on that decision and am confirmed that Jesus is still number one in my Life. That He will overcome anything in my life because I have granted Him full access. I welcome that correction, encouragement, and fellowship from Him.
This world means nothing to me. Loving God and Loving People mean everything to me and that is who I will serve, God alone and I will share His love and Gospel with as many people as I can for all my days... cancer will never change that.