I sat in the Oncologist office recently. It was time for the re-staging tests to determine the prognosis of my battle with Hodgkins Lymphoma. It has been 5 years since I finished treatment and medically speaking this was a great benchmark to be at. What would the tests show? Where do things stand? How long will I continue to have all of this ‘hang over my head’ as I go about life and ministry? What if I face another round of chemotherapy? Can my physical body even take the abuse from the chemicals? These were the questions swirling around my head and heart as I waited for the lab call me back for blood samples and x-rays.
As I sat listening for my name to be called to report to the lab I felt my cell phone vibrate indicating that I had a message. It was an email from John, the head of our Project India team in India. Never knowing when there has been an attack of persecution or the need to an urgent issue, I quickly downloaded the message and read it as I continued to wait for the medical re-staging to begin.
Here are the first three sentences from the email:
“Brother Terry, we have planted the 66th Project India church. We showed your dvd messages and 13 people gave they hearts to the lord. Please keep praying for them.”
In the midst of all my concerns about health, it was as if the Lord was shouting, “I’m not finished with you yet! There is much work to be done.”
My eyes moistened with tears, and a much needed smile struck my face and I bowed my heart and thanked the Lord for these new believers. I also thanked the Lord for His unbelievable timing to have this message sent to me 5 minutes before the tests began. It was a buoy and strength beyond description. John did not even know I was at the doctor’s office.
The Lord came to the disciples walking on the water at the 4th watch of the night during their ordeal on the Sea of Galilee. Many times it may seem late for us, but God’s timing is perfect. Oh, that my heart would be even more dependent upon His ways and rest in His promises. Our Lord is certainly amazing…and so is His timing!
And after all the tests, my Oncologists walks in the examining room and says, “Mr. Ivy, you have reached a huge milestone. The tests results are great and there is no sign of cancer. It is time to move your appointments to once per year.” The Lord had prepared me with His tender hand of encouragement. What a Mighty God we serve!