God Sized

Sitting around chatting with your friends is one of life’s greatest pleasures. It was during one of these times that Travis said something I’ll never forget. I told him that if he died I would have a crisis of faith. He looked me square in the eye and said, “don’t you dare. Don’t you dare lose faith if I die. I will come back and haunt you if you do.”

It’s just like Travis to add a bit of humor to an important lesson.

But minus the humor, his comment struck me and I have thought about it constantly since then. Wow. Amazing faith. To encourage someone to not allow your untimely and unfair death inhibit their faith in God. No anger. No resentment. Just encouragement.

Last week was my first glimpse at how I would truly handle Travis’ untimely and unfair death should it happen.

I failed. (sorry Trav)

The only word I can use to describe my feelings last week is betrayed.

You see…I have always whole heartedly believed Travis will not die from this. I have believed that he will get the miracle. To a fault. Almost becoming annoyed with the Roberts when they grieve. (Great friend, huh?) But last week was the first time that it hit me. He could actually die?!?

Perhaps it is his personality. That magnetic personality that draws everybody to him.

Maybe it is the fact that he simply does not lose. As Joey says, “winners win.” And Travis is the ultimate winner. He wins at everything in life. Call it luck. Call it perseverance. Call it God. Call it what you want. But Travis always comes out on top.

I don’t really think it’s any of that to be honest. I think it’s because I believe that God spoke to us not once…not twice…but three times this sickness is not unto death. I get irritated when people try to explain that away. “Well he isn’t dying… He knows Jesus… He has eternity. He’ll never face spiritual death now.” Don’t change scripture. That’s not what happens in the story. Lazarus was already saved. Jesus was simply saying that his physical death would not be the end of this sickness. Travis had given his life to Christ before we were given these messages. We didn’t need the message if it was referring to spiritual death. I believe that God spoke to us and told us “this sickness is not unto death.” And I guess I didn’t realize how much I believed it until this weekend. As I walked around feeling betrayed. Betrayed by God as it hit me he could actually die.

I am not naive about what Travis has. Outside of him and his family nobody knows this disease better than I do. Nobody has researched it more. I know there is less than a 1% chance. I know this is considered terminal. I know the doctors are looking to extend his life. Not save it. So it is not naivety that caused me to never face that he could die. Just a promise.

And then it hit me.

He’s not dead yet stupid.

Sometimes a God sized miracle requires a God sized problem. And in true Trav fashion…that’s what we have. A God sized problem. Travis never does anything small.

My job. Your job. Our job is to pray. The rest is up to God.

I’ll be transparent. I don’t really understand the purpose of praying. It seems to me God is going to do what He is going to do and I don’t understand how our prayers are going to change that.

But because I already failed the “faith” test. I figure I better go for the obedience test.

And so I will pray out of simple obedience. Because that’s what God commands us to do.

Travis’ appointment to get the results of his blood test and CT scan from Friday is today at 1 PM central time.

Pray for peace. Pray for wisdom.

Pray for a God sized miracle.

Because, if you are like me, for the first time you realize that is what we are facing.

A God sized problem.

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11 responses to “God Sized

  • Anonymous

    Our hearts are with Travis and Carrie. You are surely in our prayers.
    Walt and Vicki Gansser

  • Lynne Gann

    I have to comment here since I too lost a very sweet, young, Christian lady friend of mine last year to cancer. She fought her battle for about 5 years. She also had 3 children & was 40. I was so sure in my heart & truly believed she wasn’t going to die but would be healed. I reassured her Mom & her that God had given me this assurance like He had never done before. I struggled too once the doctors told her to go home & put her affairs in order. Even when she was given a couple of weeks & she once again surprised all of them by going a couple of months I just knew she would be miraculously healed. She wasn’t healed on this earth. And that’s how I had to come to terms with it. We continue to believe & pray for miracles here on earth but ultimately our sinful & diseased bodies will give way to death; whether it is too soon for some or not. God bless you as you pull closer to Him & seek His face. His ways are higher than our ways, His thoughts are not like our thoughts. His will is perfect & it will be done in Travis if he is submitted to Christ. Take this one day at a time & don’t look into the future. Make each day count & continue to pray for a miracle just as I am doing.

    One side note: my friend’s testimony throughout her journey & battle touched thousands of lives & she continues to touch lives even from death. Her beauty & humor still mentors to many of us.

    • Doreen

      I have no argument with what you have shared, yet I am troubled by people’s efforts to try and make sense out of tragedies by saying how a person (s) was a testimony. This may bring them glory. They kept their faith etc. But God is glorified when people are delivered.

      • Kymberly Arana

        True, but God is also glorified when people are not delivered. God’s glory is not dependent upon His works; it is manifested THROUGH his works. HOW he chooses to work is up to Him alone.

        Please know that I’m not trying to enter into a theological debate in the midst of Travis and Carrie’s pain. I only write to clarify what is certainly also your understanding. Many people are deeply hurt when God is understood as standing in anything other than the aseity of His glory.

        I think of it like a fence between this fallen world and God’s perfect one. Anytime I try to look over the fence and ascribe motivations to God – I land in a wrong place in my mind. My job is to be a sheep, obediently following the allotment of Truth, I have been given. Obedience doesn’t require understanding. So, we too, will abide in prayer for Travis; bringing to God our deepest desire – years piled upon years to his life, and surrendering that desire at the place where it meets the unfathomable fence of God’s soverignity.

  • Felicia Conwell, Kaiser Permenente

    My prayer today is for you, Carrie.

    Lord, there is none like You. When Carrie is sad, You are her comforter. My You calm presence restore her soul. May Your, words be cool, refreshing water to her spirit. Despite her confusion, You guide her in paths of righteousness and it’s all for Your glory. Even when she feel lost in a dark valley, she will not be afraid, for You are with her. Your gentle strength and Your divine authority comfort her. Carrie, God is your comforter. Read Psalm 23:3-4, this brings me comfort when I’m feel down.
    I will not end this prayer without sending a prayer up for Travis. Lord, please give him the strength he needs to endure what ever Your will is for his life. In Jesus’ name I pray.Amen!

    I love you guys!

  • steve townley

    It is 12:33 CST. I am praying for you …. for God to be present with you at 2 and for His peace to be yours. complete assurance of being in His hands. praise God for your witness thru this. so many are being blessed and witnessed to thru your journey.

  • Sarah Kirkland

    Praying with out ceasing!

  • Doreen

    I Agree. God has given us so many promises of healing. Deliverer , healer , savior; this is who our God is. We walk by faith and not by sight.

  • Susan Thomas

    I am praying for you and Travis today. May the Lord continue to strengthen you and Travis and uphold you both through this Christmas season with His love and answered prayer and encouragement for your hearts.

  • Terri Seward

    I lost my husband to this horrible cancer 6 months ago. I understand the fear at the thought of losing someone so loved and too young to die. I also understand struggling to rationalize faith in God when He has just taken the most important person in my life away from me. BUT — there is more to the story. We know God is always good, that He is always in control, and He takes care of His children. He does! Even when things don’t go according to our plan. His plan is perfect! My precious husband is in Heaven and I will see him again. God is using my husbands illness and passing to strengthen my faith and that of countless others to be so far deeper and more real than we could have ever imagined had we not had to go through this loss. You previously posted about pieces of the puzzle. Each day is a new piece. Travis will see the full picture when he gets to Heaven, regardless of if that is tomorrow or in 50 years. We will each see it in our own time. And never doubt it’s a perfect picture for all who love God and trust Him.

    Don’t lose your faith! God is in control. I pray daily for faith and peace for this sweet family and the many friends who love them. And the “concrete faith” to trust Him in ALL circumstances.

  • Anita Zimmerman

    As I was praying for your family this morning, the thought crossed my mind that it is just like the Lord to bring us to the place where there is no other explanation for an event, except that it is a miracle. When (and I know we are all praying for “when”, not “if,”) Travis is healed, the only explanation will be that God intervened. He had a habit of doing this with His people for centuries — crossing the Red Sea, Jericho, Gideon’s victory. Think of the impact that Travis’s healing will have on his doctors and nurses and all those who don’t share our faith. And think of the marvelous testimony you both will have to share for the rest of your lives!

    “God’s mercies are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness!”

    Praying in Richmond,

    Anita

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