Trusting God Through Terminal Illness

Trusting God Through Terminal Illness

I know that God will give me the strength to keep going until he calls me home. I am learning not to worry about tomorrow, but to be thankful and trust him for each day. He knows what is coming and he will help me when it comes. Let me encourage you, in whatever situation you find yourself, to keep going. Remember that you are precious to the Lord and he will never leave you nor forsake you.

I was sitting at the piano on a big stage in a large concert venue, something I had done many times before, but this time my hands were heavy. My fingers weren’t able to play the notes that they should have been playing and I knew that something wasn’t right. Some months later, I was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease, an incurable condition in which all my muscles would stop working and eventually lead to my death.

I quickly progressed to using a wheelchair and had to give up the job I loved, teaching kids to play music. Within a few months, I was totally dependent on my wife to feed me, get me dressed and take me places. Within a year, I had lost the ability to eat and now I am losing my ability to speak. I use a ventilator to breathe, am fed by a tube in my stomach and spend my days in a specially adapted chair. I am very thankful that I have an eye-tracking device so that I can still use a computer and turn on the TV. When my voice gives up, I can use my eyes to slowly type a few phrases which my mechanical voice speaks out loud. It would be easy to look at me and feel that there was no purpose to my life, but that’s not what God says.

Here are four things that God is teaching me. I need to remind myself of them constantly and though I sometimes forget, I know that he never forgets me.

I Am Precious

Isaiah 43 verse 4 says, ‘You are precious and honoured in my sight, and … I love you.’

I need to remind myself continually that God loves me for who I am not what I can do. The Lord has chosen me to be his treasured possession (Deut. 14:2) and I am still precious to him despite my illness. He knows what he is doing and he is good.

If you are feeling that you have no purpose, the Lord wants to tell you differently. He wants you to know that your purpose is being his child, not what you are able to do.

I Am Blessed

When I first received the diagnosis, there was a time of real sorrow and sadness as I mourned the things that I knew would soon be taken away from me. Still some days are hard and I feel helpless and upset that I am a burden on others. Yet, God promises that if I lean on him and trust him, he will give me the strength that I need.

I need to ask God daily to help me remember my blessings. I have so much to be thankful for. Each day is a gift to enjoy being with my family, watching the birds and the garden grow.

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