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Journal

May
28
2015

CT tomorrow; and shameless audacity

I have a CT scan scheduled for 11am tomorrow morning (Thursday) in Chicago.  After looking over all of my slides, the pathologists at Northwestern have determined that the cancer in the lymph node in my lung looks like the first cancer from 2013, but also looks like the more aggressive areas that were present in the tumor in my uterus.  In other words, though they cannot say for sure, it is possible that all of these cancers are one and the same - metastatic endometrial cancer.  The treatment that the doctors are all proposing is chemotherapy

Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.  So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” - Luke 11:5-13

I had intended to share several of the verses and passages from the Bible that over the last few weeks have helped me pray and know the heart and mind of God.  One of these days I will share them with you all.  But this is the one that I feel led to share with you now.

I have asked God to heal me miraculously.  I know that He can; I believe that He will.  With shameless audacity I have pleaded before Him.  Not because I have earned the right - but only because of Christ.  When He died and then rose again, He took on Himself all of my sin, all that separated me from God, and took it all away.  All I have had to do is accept the gift, believe, follow.  Now I come before my Father as the daughter that He delights in.  I have asked, sought, and knocked; God has promised in His word that I will receive, find, and the door that I knock on will be opened to me.  Should I not take God at His word?

One of my pastors and another leader from my church came over to pray for me a few weeks ago.  I told them of my longing for God to heal me, to take this cancer away.  My pastor anointed me with oil and they prayed for my healing.  Since then I have prayed as a desperate father two thousand years ago prayed - I believe; help my unbelief.  I have poured over the Gospels, reading of how time and time again, Jesus healed those who came to Him.  God has made me aware of my Western skepticism of anything that anyone claims to be a miracle; He has dismantled my faulty presuppositions about what is real and what is not.  Many others have prayed for me when my faith was lacking.  The Holy Spirit intercedes for me with groans that words cannot express.  My Father inclines His ear to me, because He loves me.

The truth about God is that He is way more compassionate than any of us are, and way more than we make Him out to be.  He is the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.  If we, who love imperfectly, know how to give good gifts to our children, how much more will our Father, who loves perfectly, give to His?  Whenever I begin to doubt, this is what I come back to.  The reality of a loving God and of me being His.

You would be right to point out that the last verse of the Luke passage says that God will give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him; there is no mention of "good things" as there is in the parallel passage in Matthew 7 (verses 7-11).  I came across the Luke passage during a recent time of pleading.  I was familiar with the Matthew passage and was surprised at the difference.  I have been praying for the good thing of healing, of rescue; asking, seeking, knocking for that.  But Jesus tells us here to ask for the Holy Spirit; and I want to do what He wants me to do.  So as I knelt on the floor in my room, I prayed for the Holy Spirit to come.  I prayed earnestly and cried my prayers out; and the Holy Spirit came and knocked me flat on my back.  I have never had an encounter with the Spirit like this; probably because I have never seriously extended the invitation.  This was a sign given to me; God was being gracious to His doubting child.  Both passages are true.  He gives the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him.  He gives good gifts to those who ask Him.  Neither is too difficult for the Lord.  Neither request is too audacious.

Wait on the Lord with me, brethren.  Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.



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Comments

  • Holly Gursoy : This was so powerful that I had to re read this post again! Awesome testimony of faith!
    5/29/15
  • Ellen : Praying for you and the family
    5/28/15
  • Larry and Judy : Ruth, we continue to pray for you and Doug and Maddie and James!! What a beautiful confirmation God gave you of the presence of the Holy Spirit in your life to comfort and guide you on this journey! It is evident from your past and current entries that you have and are continuing to experience God in ways like never before! Through every "yuck" you encounter, you humbly place your life in the hands of God and He blesses you with His presence! Thank you for sharing so openly and honestly how God has carried you through all your heartaches! When thinking of your relationship with the Lord, I am reminded of some of the words of an old hymn: " Nearer, my God, to Thee, nearer to Thee. E'en though it be a cross that raiseth me, still all my song shall be, Nearer, my God, to Thee, Nearer, my God, to Thee, Nearer to Thee." Ruth, while you are enduring your cross of suffering, you are being drawn closer to the heart of God and experiencing such an intimate relationship with Him! You are a beautiful Daughter of the King! May God, who has gifted you with His presence in such a beautiful way, bring healing to you! We Love You!
    5/28/15
  • LaClaire : The Spirit is interceding boldly for you with groans and tears beyond human words or understanding tonight. Praying that The Power that knocked you on your back did the same for every single cancer cell in your body.
    5/28/15
  • Ajit : I read your reflections to Giselle as we were going to sleep. I also read all the comments from the numerous people who love you and Doug and the children. We're all praying Ruth. And yes , I do ask Him to cure you completely of this illness. Your faith and the prayers of all around the world will lead to your cure.
    5/28/15
  • Deanna Norelli : Ruth, Dough, Maddie and James you are so dearly loved. Continuing to pray for a miracle. We love you!
    5/28/15
  • Lisa Bigler : I'm praying hard, begging for complete healing and restoration of your body. Thank you for sharing your heart.
    5/28/15
  • Rick Allen : Ruth,The power in your prayer to receive the Holy Spirit brought tears to my eyes. I commit to be more audacious! Starting now. LORD IN THE POWERFUL, HOLY AND SPLENDID NAME OF JESUS CHRIST I ASK THAT YOU HEAL RUTH AND BLESS HER WITH MANY YEARS OF LIFE WITH HER FAMILY! THANK YOU JESUS. He has the power to heal all our brokenness, physical, emotional and spiritual. He wants to do it and says Please ask!
    5/28/15
  • Sue Cook : I am praying for you, too. Your comment of "Not because I have earned the right - but only because of Christ" is so humbling. Continue to be strong and know that so many are praying for you.
    5/28/15
  • David Burson : Praying!
    5/28/15
  • Harry and Suzanne Tressel : Thank you, Ruth, for your honest sharing. We pray with you and for you...In my devotions yesterday, I read this verse from Psalm 116: I love the Lord for he heard my voice, he heard my cry for mercy. Because he bent down and listened to me, I will pray to him as long as I live. (paraphrase) The Holy Spirit, such a gift! He is with you wherever you go. Love you, Suzanne and Harry
    5/28/15
  • Gloria and Paul : praying audaciously
    5/28/15
  • Don and Kay Olson : We feel your anguish but no despair. You are trusting. Peace. Know that you are getting the very best medical care. Know too, that all of us are praying fervently. The Holy Spirit was sent as a Comforter.
    5/28/15
  • Brian Bondad : Thank you, Lord
    5/28/15
  • Robin : Prayers continue!
    5/28/15
  • Mary Nees : amen, and anticipating with you, for He is good and gracious
    5/28/15
  • Tanya Ocampo-Verdin : Praying for you Ruth. Sending you and your family my love.
    5/28/15
  • Kimberley Carlson : Praying with you for a miracle! Beautiful post! And our God IS the God of the impossible!
    5/28/15
  • Pam Smythe : Praying and praying some more!
    5/28/15
  • Eileen Weeks : Ruth, I am praying with you and for you for complete healing in the name of our most powerful God, Jesus Christ. Believing, as you and Doug do, that He can perform this miracle and bless your whole family. Lord, I pray in the name of Jesus that you touch this precious sister and bring restoration to her body, that all cancer be gone, that she be given the privilege of sharing the evidence of your power. Amen
    5/28/15
  • Julie Irmeger : It's been a long drought not hearing from you, but it has caused me to pray all the harder for you knowing you are in intense battle - body, mind and soul. Let us remember that this same Spirit is the One that raised Jesus from the dead!! Hallelujah!! Praying David's psalms & prayers for you that God will heal you for the glory of His own name b/c I know that you will loudly & boldly make Him known in healing even as you are in sickness. Remaining with you, steadfast in prayer to God Almighty.
    5/28/15
  • Shannon Getty : Ruth, your words of faith at this most difficult time are so inspiring! Our God is so amazing! I join you as you go boldly to His throne of grace & plead for healing; you are in my thoughts and prayers sweet sister in Christ!
    5/28/15
  • Beth Rehrer : Dearest Ruth, As you fall into the arms of Jesus, may you find all comfort in the knowledge that you are His. You have received the gift of the Holy Spirit in a powerful way, I am thankful for that. Your Father in heaven is holding you close and whispers soothingly to His daughter's soul. I am adding my prayers to the countless others who plead on your behalf and thank God that He will heal you once again. You are well loved by all who have had the privilege of being in your path. I love you and send you hugs that linger and a shoulder to rest your head on when you need it. Dear Sister, I have bread for you.
    5/28/15
  • Katie Lind : Ruth, Praying with you for a miracle. You are loved by so many but most of all by Jesus! To Him be the glory.
    5/28/15
  • Sue Ellen Haak : Ruth, Your journal entry is the most inspirational and thoughtful thing I have read.... Maybe ever. Shameless audacity... Love that. We will keep praying for healing and the Holy Spirit to work in you.
    5/28/15
  • Christine dolejs : The Lord has healed me in the past few years (even when I was afraid and doubted) and He will heal you.
    5/28/15
  • Sarah Pierson : Your writing is beautiful and true and it inspires me in so many ways Ruth. I kneel with you and pray for miracles. You are loved. Thank you for sharing your faith and your doubts and your life.
    5/28/15
  • Love, Jenny for DNAP : Dearest Ruth, the Spirit shines through your writing and challenges me to cling even stronger to His word and truth in the midst of hardship. We are standing in the gap with you.
    5/28/15
  • Roselyn : Ruth, You bring honor to our Lord Jesus Christ and deep encouragement to me. I am thanking God in faith that the Holy Spirit, Who made Himself evident to you, is breathing on every trace of cancer and applying the healing that we are asking for. I agree, we ask for a deeper encounter with the Holy Spirit and good things. I stand in agreement that the healing we have asked for has been accomplished. You are a powerful communicator. I am learning to lean harder into Jesus, simply by remembering how it feels to hug you, I am pleading with God FOR and at the same time thanking Him THAT. My life and faith have been enriched by walking with you. I will be praying today in agreement with Jesus Who is ever interceding for you and saying to the angels, "Look at my beautiful Ruth. Even during this crushing season, her eyes are fixed on Me and that ravishes my heart." I love you and thank God for you
    5/28/15
  • Christina Fält : Dear Ruth, I am thinking so much of you and your family. Will keep on praying for good healing. Christina
    5/28/15
  • Katherine Berka : Thank you Ruth for showing us so powerfully how to pray...I will pray and wait with you my dear friend.
    5/27/15