Saturday, November 27, 2010

My Sister-in-law, His Witness

I thought about writing this since my Sister-in-law called me and the decision she made kept running through my mind. Her options were limited. Heart/lung transplant; with an A positive blood type, the opportunities for such a transplant were as slim as her chances of surviving the operation. Mechanical heart; again, slim survival percentages. Two previous open heart surgeries added complications.

Wait. As with the rest of us, wait for what the future will bring.

As Hezekiah was given fifteen years, she’s had more than forty after winning a battle against cancer.

Back then the radiation used to treat her Hodgkin’s Disease was successful. She was able to bear her son, raise her three children, see them married, enjoy her grandchildren and her parents and for all of that we are grateful. What was not known at that time was the long-term effects of that radiation. For her, calcification of her heart valves is one of the effects. Which brings us to the three options for the failing heart.

Many others face similar decisions. But I’m not as close to them as I am to her.

Although we married brothers, we met in the middle of our marriages, not at the beginning. Our husbands were separated as children, mine adopted, hers remaining with their mother. Not until we were in our 40’s was the family reunited. We’ve never lived in the same town, and only once in the same state. Yet, we’ve become very close, largely because of our faith in Jesus Christ as our Savior.

It is her faith that brightens the world around her. It is that faith that comes across when she says, “I’m at peace with the decision.”

We need to be, too. You see -- we are all dying. That’s the only sentence given once we’re born. It is the natural progression in this world, occurring each and every day. We ignore it. Doesn’t change the fact that it will occur. Hebrews tells us it has been this way since the foundation of the world.

And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: (Hebrews 9:27 KJV)

She (and I) wants you to understand that it’s not the “once to die” that is a concern, it’s “the judgment.” And, not for ourselves. We have asked God the jailer’s question in Acts 16:30 and we’ve followed Paul and Silas’ answer in verse 31. It is for those we love who have not yet understood the question applies to them as well.

This morning on Facebook, she wrote: “God is good and I feel very blessed. When I had cancer in 1968 I was told I had a year to live. I prayed that he would let me live long enough to raise my 3 kids. He not only did that but I have seen 11 grand kids and 4 great grand kids. So He gave me 41 more years then I ever thought I would get. So I ask one thing of you pick up a Bible and read John 3:16. Then tell me if you have been blessed or not,”

I have been blessed – by the reading of His word and the witness of His child.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for sharing this wonderful testimony!
    I had a sister in law who died from Hodgkins disease in the seventies...she was 21, and left two children. I don't have any assurance of her salvation.


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