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Conversations with mountains

Mark 11:23 New King James Version assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.
"I am who God says I am"  Avoiding Identity theft by cancer and disease

A few months after I was given a diagnosis of "aggressive stomach cancer", a dear sister in the Lord was also diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer.  Each year I look forward to supporting her ministry as she goes to Jamaica, preaching the gospel and bringing school supplies for the little children whose parents cannot afford them.  I was overjoyed to hear that she will be going on her mission to Jamaica as usual this year--in spite of stage 4 colon cancer. You can read more about her mission at www.celebrateourchildren.com.

There was a time last year before I had been given any diagnosis that I was feeling very weak and sick.  It was an effort to complete my daily office work, let alone the many additional projects God gives me to do. I had no idea why my body felt that way.  Our Assistant Pastor had called to ask when I could come speak to our school of ministry class, like I do every year. I was going to call him back and tell him I just could not do it. I felt so weak and bad. But before I could return his call, The Lord told me to read about the Prophet Elisha in 2 Kings 13:14-21. Elisha was sick and on his deathbed. The king of Israel came to mourn over Elisha and pay his last respects. Instead of focusing on his own situation, Elisha started ministering and prophesying to the king just like always. The Lord spoke to me and said "Elisha was on his deathbed and he did not stop ministering to others. You are not even dying Vivian, and I want you not to stop doing what I have called you to do because of how you feel." That Word from the Lord has enabled me to walk through months of "bad feelings" and never stop working or ministering to others. God will do the same for you.

The Bible tells us that the thief comes to kill, steal and destroy. Even if the thief of cancer can not kill your body, it tries to steal your joy of living, and your strength. If allowed, cancer will rob you of peace. Cancer also tries to steal your God-given identity. Like other attacks of the devil, cancer tries to change you from being who God says you are and distract you from doing what God said for you to do. It is easy to allow cancer to become the lord of your life, letting cancer decide what you will do and where you will go. But for the Christian, Jesus is Lord of your life. And Jesus is Lord over cancer.

At best cancer wants to change your identity to a "cancer survivor". When cancer showed up at my door I was not surviving, I was living. And I am living now. I have life and life more abundant.  Jesus came for me to have that life and I receive it. Surviving causes your life to be centered around cancer. I am not surviving, I am living and thriving in the life of Jesus. My life is not centered around being freed from cancer. My life is centered in and around the living God. My life is hid with Christ in God. It’s staying there.

At one point  in my journey, The Lord encouraged  me with the song "I am who you say I am" by Hillsong. I listened to it day and night, and sang it back to God declaring "You are for me, not against me, I am who You say I am!". Satan wanted to change my identity into a cancer victim or somebody laying around looking for sympathy or waiting to die. But that is not who I am.  I am who God says I am. I am a child of God. I am healed of cancer. I am who God says I am. And so are you.

Vivian J Woodard M.D.


 



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