meaning (2)


Recently my oncologist ask if I would add my experience to the ‘Patient Stories” on his website. I agreed, and began by looking at the stories already included there. I was amazed that out of 27 accounts only one had any mention of prayer or God or anything beyond this life. In 1 Corinthians 15:19 Paul tells believers that if our hope is only in this life we are of all people most miserable. This truth can be applied to cancer patients whether they are Christians or not. It is hard to be positive when you no you may very well lose everything you hope for. This of course is true for everyone, whether you have cancer or not. In Colossians 4:5 Paul speaks of the hope stored up for us beyond this life. Look with me at the context of this verse in Colossians 1:3-6

“We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing—as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God.

Our hope is stored in heaven for us. Our great treasure, our ultimate rewards are waiting for us in heaven. It is there that we will enjoy the embrace of our Lord, and hear him say, “Well done.”

The gospel gives our lives purpose, meaning, and hope beyond this life. and it will bear fruit in our lives and in the lives of others to the last breath that we take. If this is true, we do not need to escape our trials. God will give them meaning to the last moment we live on this earth.




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This first post in my new blog THINKING IN THE SPIRIT. Most of the posts in this new blog will not be good to post here on Pray Network. But this post could well have been entered in WATCHING IN PRAYER, which I plan to continue to post every other week. However, I am approaching even this similar entry from a different perspective and intent.

And as I finished writing this entry, I decided that because the segments were so short my readers would be tempted to skip over them too quickly. These are profound truths even though they can be written briefly and are not difficult to understand. So, I will divide them into three shorter blog posts on this subject.


The first of Martin Luther's 95 Theses read, "All of life is repentance."

We may tend to dread repentance and avoid it at all cost. But that is a wrong view of repentance. Repentance is a relief in the light of the gospel. And it leads to a life of freedom and satisfaction.

Look at this powerful prayer of David in Psalm 139.

"Search me O God and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."

Searching the Dependence of Your Heart

One of the primary reasons we need God to help us search our hearts is that we fall away from depending on Him for righteousness, meaning and fulfillment. I can avoid examining my heart because I don’t want to admit my weakness and failings. This ignores the source of my righteousness.  

The Hebrew word for thoughts here refers to anxious thoughts. If I am depending on my own goodness to be sufficient, I will be stressed to my limit. But we depend on the sacrifice of Jesus for our righteousness. We come to God in the purifying power of His blood. And we depend upon Him for our purpose, dignity and fulfillment in our lives.

It is a wonderful relief to repent of finding our righteousness and fulfillment in ourselves. Repentance does not just turn from lying, but from the motivation that thinks I need to bolster my position, hide my weaknesses or gain respect.

What are you depending on that needs the relief of repentance?

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