Walt usually greeted me with, “Hey, Dan, I have an
chance for you.” This was how numerous of our conversations started. More than time I
discovered to laugh and beat him to the punch. “So Walt, what chance do you
have for me nowadays?”
Walt was a single of these satisfied, quick-going guys who had the
present to see the good in just about every scenario. Even the worst of occasions was an
“opportunity” for a person to understand one thing new, to develop, to rise above
expectations and do wonderful items. Walt lived as if just about every “opportunity” was a
moment for us to stay faithful, do our ideal, and then watch as God showed up
to redeem and transform a tricky scenario.
I was a young man when I worked with Walt, and I discovered a lot. Above all, I discovered that even the most tricky of scenarios is “an opportunity” to see God at operate.
In Might of 2016, a man dressed in a white coat stood at the foot of my hospital bed and told me I had Stage IV colon cancer. At that moment, my wife Nancy and I started a journey not of our deciding upon. Nancy and I have moved from grieving a devastating diagnosis to studying to see chance in the midst of a tricky scenario. We have witnessed the reality of disappointments transformed into possibilities for superior. It is achievable to be joyful in the midst of adversity.
If I had been granted the chance to make it all go away, to wake up from this horrible dream, I would take it. The cloud hanging more than my life is not a pleasant a single. Weekly trips to the oncologist for chemotherapy therapies, MRI and CT scans, labs and such are obtaining old. However in the midst of it all, there are possibilities to acquire significantly a lot more than I have lost.
Just the other day I asked Nancy if my character had
changed. I knew the answer. I just wanted to see if it was apparent to these
closest to me. She confirmed what I felt to be the truth: I am a gentler,
calmer, a lot more peaceful particular person than I was prior to. The “type A” push and drive to
get items accomplished and succeed has been tempered with a dose of reality about the
shortness of life. When I appear at life, I have
the potential to see that which is definitely essential.
Lunch with Nancy has turn into a lot more of a each day reality. We slow down, cease for a handful of
minutes and share time away from the workplace. It sounds straightforward, but it is
considerable. In the previous there was also significantly to do, so significantly to achieve.
My calendar is much less complete. This alter is, in component, simply because
I am not in a position to push and move at the pace I after known as typical. This reality
gives me with moments to be nonetheless and listen for God’s major and
directing. This has generally been an essential component of who I am, but cancer has
supplied me an “opportunity” to do it even a lot more.
I laugh a lot more. Every moment has a unique excellent to it.
Confession: there had been occasions in life I
was so focused on what could be that I missed what was. Seeking to the future
and preparing on how to make items turn into a reality usually robs us of the likelihood
to be with individuals in the moment.
I obtain I am living in the present significantly a lot more than I was prior to. Not only am I in the present, but I also obtain it enjoyable and life-affirming. I am nonetheless preparing, preparing, and operating to move into the future. Even so, my plans are tempered with an potential to be at peace with what is. There are other alterations. Some are subtle, other people I see extremely clearly. Cancer was a “setback.” It was also an “opportunity.” I pray God continues to give me the strength to see the possibilities for myself and other people as I travel this journey.
Coffee and Conversation
Picture for a moment you and I had the chance to sit
down for a cup of coffee. As we got to know every single other, I would ultimately ask one thing along these lines: “How do
you practical experience God at operate in your life?”
If you are like numerous individuals I speak with, you may well struggle to answer. Pastor varieties will usually commence by speaking about what they are undertaking or reading. That is not what I am asking. What I want to hear about is how you are getting with God. I extended to hear how you are encountering God in the midst of your daily life. As you assume of your life, what possibilities at the moment exist for you to bring your cares and worries to Abba Father, trusting Him to transform and redeem a tricky scenario into one thing lifegiving?
Easter is a season of transformation, renewal, hope, and chance. A Roman cross was transformed from an instrument of death to a symbol of hope and life. The tomb, a location of mourning, became a symbol of life and rebirth. Is there one thing in your life exactly where you can invite God to transform what could at the moment be a tricky scenario into one thing lifegiving? Go ahead, seize the chance, give us one thing to definitely speak about when we lastly have a likelihood to sit down for coffee.
About the author
Daniel Nicewonger is a graduate of Messiah College and Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. Daniel has served as pastor for American Baptist churches in New York, Massachusetts, and Pennsylvania, and at the moment serves as the Pastor of Initially Baptist Church of Kennett Square, PA. Daniel is married to his wife of 28 years, Nancy. They have two adult young children, Joseph and Rayann. The Journey Continues is Daniel’s testimony that it is achievable to obtain joy amidst life’s struggles. For a lot more facts, take a look at: http://www.danielnicewonger.com/the-journey-continues/.