Monday, August 13, 2012

Awe and thanksgiving

It’s been easy to accept God’s graceful provision of unexpectedly good health over the last few years as I’ve contended with melanoma. The disease has never ceased to be dangerous but I've been fortunate to have avoided anything that constituted a medical crisis. As the melanoma slowly advanced, I’ve had it treated and simply moved on. There was no other reasonable approach and it’s permitted me a life that’s rich, satisfying and full of joy.
That’s changed now, and I confess I’m a little puzzled as to what happens next. There’s certainly the medical stuff to deal with, but what’s more interesting and important is how I understand God to be imparting his will to my life. He is sovereign and has the absolute right to do with me as he pleases. I know his love to be perfect and I don’t fear whatever coming days and weeks may bring. Medical decisions are but a part of what matters. This time will also bring both a change in how I respond to him and the work I am to do. God has hit the reset button in my brain and everything has been made new. It seems odd to write this, but I believe great opportunity lies before me.
Lord, I cannot do this unless you enable me.
I’m not a mystic so while I can’t report a vision of God’s physical presence while I was in the ICU and/or the hospital OR this week, I’m amused to think I half-expected it. I thought I might catch a glimpse of a couple of thick-lipped angels whispering to each other up on the ceiling while I lay below them in a drug-addled state. Perhaps they were out on a more important assignment that night.
This absence of angels in no way diminishes my conviction that God through his spirit is, was and will remain tangibly present in my life. He has promised to be with me always, and knowing this makes all the difference. Whatever the exact nature of this divine existence may be, it is of the deepest consolation. It’s not dogma, doctrine or even belief.  It is simply his pure love. I feel it. It brings tears to my eyes, a lump to my throat and fire to my heart. For however long God chooses to grant me this sense of his presence, I accept it with awe and thanksgiving.


Thandi said...


Carl Pelz said...

That "pure love" and His presence is what we all yearn for yet experience so rarely and fleetingly. Thank you for expressing something so ineffable yet so real.