December 24, 2008
Yesterday David learned that his cancer has spread to his liver and lungs. He has surgery scheduled for today and chemotherapy starting thereafter. Not an easy Christmas for the Waynes, but I was able to speak to him on the phone yesterday and he sounded in good heart. He said that since his announcement, he had been consciously aware of the prayers of bloggers upholding him.
I know I had planned to not write anything further on my blog this Christmas season. But every now and then at Christmas you hear some news that makes you realize just how fortunate you are and appreciate afresh that others are facing tough times. We will all face such difficulties at various points in our lives, so we should stand with those who are suffering right now.
David Wayne is a much loved Presbyterian friend of mine. I met him through his blog, and I believe he was the first Presbie I ever got to meet in the flesh. He and I realized early-on, as did many of our readers, that despite our very different backgrounds, we actually saw eye-to-eye on almost everything. Our connection was so strong at one point that people even accused us of being the same person writing two different blogs! A connection like that helps you to bridge the chasms we foolishly erect between Christian groups and denominations. I have learned much from David.
To hear now that the Jollyblogger has cancer of the colon wrenched at my heart strings. I also have an uncle currently facing the same diagnosis and treatment, and still remember my time as a medical student and junior doctor interacting with patients facing their frailty head on with this diagnosis. It is not easy. Without Christ, I really don’t know how anyone handles it at all.
This Christmas time, please spare a thought and a prayer for those facing such challenges. Please join me in spending a moment praying for David Wayne and his family, even as we all look forward to some well-earned relaxation time with our own families. May the peace of God guard them. May the inexplicable joy of God be like shafts of light in the darkness of the sadness and anxiety they will inevitably feel. May faith strengthen, not weaken. May the love of God enfold them in a tangible way. May God bring healing and full recovery so that this servant of God and his lovely family can continue to be a blessing to others. Now is the time for the pastor to be pastored by others, and I trust his church family will be rallying around to serve this family who I know have given so very much to them over many years.
We love you, David! And those of us who have met them, love your wonderful family too. Know that we are here for you in cyberspace, and know, too, that you have those who love you around you now. But know even morel that your God is with you, even in all of this.
Jesus said, “In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).