Matt’s Story

Site created on April 22, 2019

We are part of a small home church and one of the songs we sung earlier in March was Surrounded (Fight my Battles) by Michael W Smith.  I was really blessed by the song, but didn't yet know why it would be so meaningful to me.   (  

I'll start the main part of our story on Sunday, March 31st.  That morning,  I was sharing from Proverbs 3:1-12.  There is a lot of good words in there, but one of the items I highlighted was verses 5-6 which have been meaningful to me in my life:
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will direct your paths.

The LORD had me highlight it is easy to say we are trusting Him when things are going well, but the proof comes when times are challenging.  We had a living example of this in our midst.  A friend of mine had walked the cancer journey and had  a broken back from an accident.  What a great example for our small body (adults and children) of how to trust in the LORD in difficult circumstances.  I then had his youngest daughter do a trust fall from a chair.  At first, I just had her leaning back slightly into my hand and I would push her back up.  She did this several times as I was talking and then I removed my hand completely fully expecting she would step off the chair.  I let her fall as far as I could and still catch her (my children accused me of almost dropping her).  She never flinched a muscle and was trusting completing.  It was a perfect example in the physical realm of the trust and confidence we should have in Jesus everyday!  I then asked if her older sister would do the trust fall with her youngest sister catching her.  While she trusted her sister, she did not trust her in this situation since she would not be able to physically catch her.  We called this situational trust and it made sense in this physical example, but the Lord was also pointing out we could trust Him in every situation!  

My wife has provided a great summary of our journey to the Emergency Room and subsequent events in the first journal entry.  A shortened version is they found a mass on my small intestine and liver.  They were able to successfully remove the mass from small intestine and perform a bowel resection and biopsy the mass on the liver.  The pathology results indicate both masses are sarcoma.  They are currently running more pathology tests to pinpoint the specific type of sarcoma and to create a treatment plan.

We didn't know it at the time, but that Sunday, March 31st, Jesus was preparing us for the journey.  He has been with us every step of the way and He will go before us.  The first week of April did not go the way I had planned, but it was a good week because the LORD was with us!  The Sunday after my surgery, I was recovering in the hospital.  When I turned on the TV, Hebrews 7:25 was on the screen almost like a screensaver.   What an encouragement and comfort to be reminded Jesus lives to intercede for each one of us who call Him our LORD and Savior!
Hebrews 7:25 Therefore He (Jesus) is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.

Proverbs 3:5-6 has become even more meaningful to us and we are confident we can fully trust in the LORD in all situations.  Jesus has given us so many affirmations over the past several weeks and my wife has highlighted some of them in her journal entry.  Jesus has always been faithful and true and there is no reason to doubt His goodness now.  We have had our moments of doubt and fear, but overall Jesus has given us His peace and a spirit of worship in this situation.  We are praying for healing whether it is miraculous or through treatment.  Our hope is not in a particular outcome... our hope is in the LORD!

Newest Update

Journal entry by Lorilee & Matt Manahan

Thank you to all who prayed for my travels and appointments today.  Everything went really smooth and I actually got into my appointments early!  This almost never happens, but it did today and I was able to be home by 1PM.  Everything looked really good on the scan again.  The spot that was by my liver is gone which confirmed it was something healing from the surgery.  The spot by my incision was slightly smaller and they are fairly sure it is scarring from the surgery.  The doctors are thorough in their questioning about all kinds of topics, but the appointments normally go quick since I have been feeling great.  I feel like I am back to normal and can do everything I want or need to do.  My next scan will be another 3 months at the beginning of November.

I am grateful for all the LORD has done and continues to do for us.  Like I said before, Jesus owes us nothing, yet He continues to be so good to us!  Taking some of the lyrics from the song Lorilee posted yesterday...
I am blessed, I am called
I am healed, I am whole
I am saved in Jesus' name
Highly favored, anointed
Filled with Your power
For the glory of Jesus' name

Let those words sink in... we are highly favored by Jesus, the creator of the universe.  He has power to do all things, yet he chooses to work through us.  In a world that is shaken by COVID and uncertainty, we have a sure foundation and solid hope!  Let us not become complacent in the goodness of the LORD, but use those blessings to encourage those without hope for the glory of Jesus' name!
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