The New Living Translation
God’s Word through African Eyes: Taking a Second Look at the Africa Study Bible

By Kevin O’Brien, Th.M. Bible and Reference Brand Manager

Let’s face it, there are a lot of Bibles available today. There are a lot of study Bibles available today. IT’s easy to get overwhelmed by the choices and to pass by those that don’t seem to be created with you in mind. For most people reading this blog, the Africa Study Bible probably falls in that category. But I hope a second look will change your mind.

Where did the Africa Study Bible Come From?

Believe it or not, the Africa Stud Bible was conceived right here at Tyndale in a meeting with Tyndale board member and founder of Oasis International Ed Elliot. It really got legs in 2010 when Oasis conducted an African tour to explore the idea. The overwhelmingly positive response led to a meeting in Accra, Ghana in 2011 that included Christian leaders from every region of Africa, representing 11 countries and the major languages of literacy in Africa – English, French, Portuguese and Arabic.

Most bibles, especially most study Bibles are written and produced by westerners. Not the Africa Study Bible. The contributors are mostly African and its diversity is hard to overstate. 350 contributors. 50 countries. Tyndale CEO Mark Taylor, Oasis’s President (and son of founder Ed) Matthew Elliot, UMI’s president Jeff Wright and Life Application Study Bible author and Livingstone founder Bruce Barton served as Bible editorial consultants, but all of the major decisions including the final project mandate were made by African leaders.

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The Need

It’s easy to forget just how big, just how diverse Africa is. The 2015 Scientific American article “Africa is Way Bigger Than You Think” includes an amazing infographic: Africa is larger than China, India, the contiguous US, Japan and most of Europe—combined. And that’s just geography.

There are 1.26 BILLION people in Africa—nearly four times the 320 million in the US. Think about all the different cultures, languages and ethnic groups in Europe, a relatively small space. We know that there are great differences, but do we think that way about Africa? There are 23 officially recognized languages in Europe. Another 60 or so regional/minority yet indigenous languages. Africa is estimated to have 1500-2000 languages.

So the need for an African Study Bible is obvious, but not just for Africans living in Africa.

Here’s something that may surprise you. The African immigrant population in the US has roughly doubled every decade since 1970, with the total being 2.1 million in 2015. And that number doesn’t include the children of those immigrants.

In addition to the African Immigrant population, there are almost 43 million African Americans in the US. If just 1% were interested in both their faith (overwhelmingly Christian of some variety) and their African heritage – that’s almost 430,000 people. Or, how many of us go to a church which has sponsored a mission trip to Africa? What if every person who went on that trip had an Africa Study Bible before they went and in so doing learned a bit more about the thinking of the people to who they are going to minister?

Gaining A New Perspective

One of the things that Matthew Elliot told me about the discussions with the African leaders was that they rejected one of the early recommended taglines- “For Africans by Africans”. And so the tag line became “God’s Word through African Eyes”. The reason was simple, they viewed the Africa Study Bible as Africa’s gift to the global church. The difference is crucial, and one that is all too easy for us, as western Christians to overlook, ignore or otherwise dismiss. We send missionaries to Africa after all, so it can be hard to think of Africa as a source of spiritual wisdom and teaching. But the more I think about it, the more I have come to believe that it is a crucial source for us in the west.

The Africa Study Bible can be of great service to those of us in the west if for no other reason than it forces us to confront the cultural expectations that we bring to our reading of the Bible. And sometimes viewing something from a decidedly different angle helps us to see things in an entirely new light.

In Matthew chapter 5 Jesus gives his famous “Sermon on the Mount”. Verses 13-16 are the well-known instructions for Christians to be salt and light. If you are like me, you have probably heard sermons talking about the preservative and medicinal properties of salt in addition to its taste. The African Touch Point note at this passage offers an interesting, and challenging insight unlike any I had ever seen.

Drought is common in the Kalahari Desert region of southern Africa. Some residents there use salt to their advantage. The monkeys always know where the water is but they don’t let the humans know. People trap a monkey and feed it salt until it is extremely thirsty, then it is released. It runs straight to the water and the people follow, finding water. When Christians are salty we make others thirsty for the living water that is Jesus.

The Africa Study Bible is a very unique study Bible. It is different than any other Bible on the market. When you see the tagline “God’s Word Through African Eyes” you can be sure that this is not hype, not spin or exaggeration, and it has something to teach all of us. I know that I have learned a great deal from it already and I’m sure you will too if you take a second look.

Get your copy here –  click here.

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Life Application Study Bible Giveaway

The Life Application Study Bible is today’s #1–selling study Bible. The notes not only explain difficult passages and give information on Bible life and times but go a step further to show you how to “take it personally,” speaking to every situation and circumstance of your life! This is the one Bible resource that incorporates today’s top scholarship in answering your real-life questions. It includes nearly 10,000 Life Application notes and features designed to help readers apply God’s truth to everyday life.

Learn more here –  click here

Life Application Study Bible Giveaway

Enter to win one of the new bindings of the Life Application Study Bibles! Fill out the Gleam form below. Follow the directions to earn extra entries and we’ll chose 2 random winners to get a free Bible. We’ll choose the winners on 9/17!

Here are the Bibles you can win:

Life Application Study Bible

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Inspire Bible Online Workshop and Giveaway

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If you were disappointed to find out that one of the popular Inspire Bible Creative Journaling Workshops wasn’t going to be coming to a town near you, fear not! We have the perfect solution!

Sign up for our online event!

This two-hour Inspire Bible Creative Journaling Workshop offers you the opportunity to explore God’s Word creatively and experience a fresh approach to Bible reading. Amber Bolton will guide you through hands-on activities to inspire creativity in your daily walk with the Lord. This workshop is designed to focus hearts on Christ as you learn to color, paint, draw, and letter your way through God’s Word.

 U.S. and International Registration Includes:
-A two-hour live online Inspire Bible TOUR creative journaling workshop with Amber Bolton
-A digital file with Inspire: Proverbs sample pages to use during the workshop

To learn more about the Inspire Bible TOUR, and to find a workshop near you visit: InspireBible.com/Tour 

Register for the Inspire Bible TOUR Online Workshop on Saturday, August 29th – click here

Download a free coloring page to share with your friends and family – click here

Want to help us spread the word about this event and get a chance to win something in the process? Fill out the Gleam form below. Follow the directions for sharing about the event to earn extra entries. We’ll choose 3 winners to get a free copy of Inspire: Proverbs and one lucky winner will get a free digital registration for Tuesday’s Online workshop (Open to US & international participants)! We’ll contact the winners on 8/28.

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Inspire Online Workshop Giveaway

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Whom Shall I Fear?

My daughter loves to be afraid. She rides the craziest, twistiest, highest roller coasters; has bungee-jumped headfirst off a 300-foot tower; and skydived out of an airplane last week. She reads scary novels, watches horror movies, and loves a ghost story around the campfire on a moonlit night. She’s not alone. We’re a culture who loves fear. Zombie movies, Stephen King novels, 3D amusement park rides—all best-sellers. We simply love to have the wits scared out of us.

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Why is that? In a world that offers its fair share of worry, why would we seek out fear? According to Ilya Leybovich in his article “Scary Science: Why We Like Fear,” when our brains know that our fear is in a controlled situation, we enjoy the rush. The adrenaline rush is actually good activity for our brains, according to Men’s Health Magazine, which says that when we train our brains with controlled fear and stress, we teach our bodies to cope with the real stress that life brings. When we meet real fear, our response is “fight or flight.” The adrenaline we release when we are scared causes “a faster heart rate, quickened breath, pupil dilation to enable better vision, an increased metabolism to boost energy and more focused attention for faster decision-making.” Our survival relies on this adrenaline rush. We either put up our dukes or leave a puff of smoke behind us.

While we like the adrenaline that controlled fear brings us, none of us likes the real fear in our lives. The phone call about your teenager out with the car; the summons to the physician’s office after the MRI; that rumor about the forthcoming layoff; the letter from the bank about the loan payment you haven’t been able to make; the “thanks for coming to be interviewed but we’ve hired someone else” email. Many of us experience anxiety, paranoia, and angst on a daily basis. It doesn’t help that the media heaps on large doses of war, natural disasters, and crime, or that advertisers tell us we haven’t saved enough, exercised enough, or given our children what they truly deserve. We feel guilt, regret, and shame, all forms of innermost fear.

The Bible is full of stories in which people are scared. In fact, one of the most popular phrases in the Bible, showing up over 300 times, is some form of “Be not afraid,” indicating that people must have been pretty scared! God says it. Angels sing it. Psalmists write it. What usually follows “Be not afraid” is good news: the angels speaking to the shepherds, or God’s instructions to Moses, or the psalmists’ words of comfort.

I’m comforted to know that I never have to be afraid. My life is in God’s hand. Jeremiah 29:11 says, “ ‘I know the plans I have for you,’ says the LORD. ‘They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.’ ” These words in Jeremiah are a form of “Be not afraid.”

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Maybe you’re afraid of the upcoming college year or your child moving to a different state or a secret being revealed. The words of Psalm 91 should be of comfort to you. Read it each day this week, and feel God’s presence beside you in whatever journey you are on.

Those who live in the shelter of the Most High

will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty.

This I declare about the Lord:

He alone is my refuge, my place of safety;

he is my God, and I trust him.

For he will rescue you from every trap

and protect you from deadly disease.

He will cover you with his feathers.

He will shelter you with his wings.

His faithful promises are your armor and protection.

Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night,

nor the arrow that flies in the day.

Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness,

nor the disaster that strikes at midday.

Though a thousand fall at your side,

though ten thousand are dying around you,

these evils will not touch you.

Just open your eyes,

and see how the wicked are punished.

If you make the Lord your refuge,

if you make the Most High your shelter,

no evil will conquer you;

no plague will come near your home.

For he will order his angels

to protect you wherever you go.

They will hold you up with their hands

so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.

You will trample upon lions and cobras;

you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet!

The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me.

I will protect those who trust in my name.

When they call on me, I will answer;

I will be with them in trouble.

I will rescue and honor them.

I will reward them with a long life

and give them my salvation.”

Ron DeBoer is a writer and educator living near Toronto.

Learn more about the New Living Translation, enjoy inspiring articles, sign up for free edevotions, and find your next Bible at www.newlivingtranslation.com.

 

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The Key to Courageous Conversations

They said to me, “The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province are there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem is also broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.” So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven. Nehemiah 1:3-4

Most of us spend our lives trying to project an image of beauty and competence.

Certainly, we want others to think highly of us, but one of the things I respect most about people is their ruthless honesty—about themselves and their situations.

Nehemiah had a plum job.

He was working closely with the king, and he lived a life of luxury.

His heart, though, beat in unison with God’s heart.

He cared about the things God cares about, and when he heard that the people in Jerusalem were suffering, his heart broke.

He didn’t minimize the problem, and he didn’t fly into a panic of mindless activity.

Instead, he let the brutal truth sink in, and he responded appropriately: He sat down and wept.

Nehemiah had a courageous conversation with the messenger, then he had a courageous conversation with God.

Only courageous people are known for their honesty.

It’s a lot easier to look the other way when we see needs in our lives or in the lives of people around us.

We can give the excuse that we’ve tried as hard as we can or that we don’t have time to help a person in need.

But excuses don’t cut it.

Like Nehemiah, we need to let the truth sink into our hearts so we can respond with genuine compassion.

This is just the first part of Nehemiah’s story.

He then took bold action to gather resources, inspire the people, and rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.

Successful action, though, starts with ruthless honesty about the need.

What are some needs in your own life and in the lives of those around you?

How would being honest about those needs become a springboard for change?

“Men occasionally stumble over the truth. But most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing happened.” Winston Churchill

From The One Year Daily Insights with Zig Ziglar by Zig Ziglar and Dwight “Ike” Reighard

 

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What is Conversion?

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I remember some years back when I was just starting out in youth ministry, I was working at a church that liked to handle decisions for Christ in an altar-call sort of way. You know, where someone up front asks people to raise their hands and then perhaps come forward to pray and accept Jesus into their heart. Well, in the youth meetings I was working with, we did a similar thing, except we pulled people quietly to the side so as not to embarrass them, and took them off to a different room to explain the deal, and pray the prayer. After one of these sort of clandestine conversion moments, one of the girls who had just gone and “prayed the prayer” came up to me and said, “So how do I actually become a Christian?” The whole altar call, praying the prayer thing, hadn’t answered her deep heart questions about what it meant to follow Jesus.

As a young youth leader who had grown up in this tradition of altar calls and decisions for Christ, I remember being more than a little disturbed that it hadn’t really “worked.” And yet, the older I get and the more I think about it, the more I realize that the decision to follow Jesus is a process, and the decision to continue thinking about what it means to follow Jesus is a process, and this whole “life with Jesus” thing is a process that won’t be complete until we graduate to the next life.

The idea that someone wanted to follow Jesus but didn’t really “get it” was disturbing to me, and yet now I realize that none of us will ever completely get it, because we are talking about a relationship with God here. God is a great deal bigger than we can ever get our finite minds around. As we follow him, and learn more about his heart and his will for our lives, we will see more and more of him revealed, but there will always be more that we don’t understand.

And that’s okay.

As I read through the Gospels, I find myself struck by Jesus’ willingness to work with the disciples who didn’t get a lot of what he was trying to tell them. In fact, it took them almost three years to get the idea that he was God, and then they still had no clue what he was doing by allowing himself to be crucified. And yet, while Jesus continued to teach them and while he wanted them to understand more and more about himself so that they could experience the abundant life he had come to offer (John 10:10), the most important thing was that they had made the rather improbable choice to follow him, and that they continued to do so even in the face of all the stuff they didn’t understand.

Learn more about the New Living Translation, enjoy inspiring articles, sign up for free edevotions, and find your next Bible at www.newlivingtranslation.com.

 

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What’s Your Why?

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Meet Mawi Asgedom. Mawi was born on September 29, 1976, in Ethiopia at the onset of civil war within the country. Mawi’s father had to leave the country when Mawi was a toddler, leaving him behind with his brother, sister, and mother. Every day, Mawi’s mother cared for her small children amidst war and death. Every night, she looked at her three sleeping children and wondered if they would survive another day.

Mawi’s mother knew what she had to do. Early one morning, she woke up the children and packed what little food and belongings she had. Then she began walking. For days she walked through war-torn Ethiopia toward the border of Sudan, trying to shake off the dust of fear and hunger and death.

Mawi’s mother knew that she might not make it. A mother traveling on foot with three small children is an easy target. Yet she kept walking, determined to reach Sudan, where she hoped she could find her husband.

She did. Reunited, the family spent three years in a refugee camp in Sudan before receiving the news that they would be sponsored by a family in the United States. They were going to America! In 1983, Mawi and his family settled in the Chicago suburb of Wheaton. They were poor. They didn’t speak the language. Mawi started school with virtually no formal education.

Nevertheless, he learned English quickly, and his teachers found him to be a bright student. He joined the basketball team and ran track. Nearing his senior year of high school, Mawi learned that he had earned a huge scholarship to Harvard University.

In 1999, just sixteen years removed from a refugee camp in Sudan, Mawi Asgedom delivered the commencement address to an audience of 30,000 on the campus of Harvard University.

Mawi was transformed by the sacrifice of his mother. Today, he speaks to teenagers all over North America, inspiring them to make the right choices, to never give up. He writes books for educators and has dedicated his life to making a difference in the lives of others. He has told his story on Oprah Winfrey’s show and has written about it in his best-selling book, Of Beetles and Angels: A Boy’s Remarkable Journey from a Refugee Camp to Harvard. 

I met Mawi about a month ago. He was speaking to educators in Toronto about his mother’s sacrifice. Why did his mother walk barefoot across Ethiopia? She wanted to save her children and give them a better life. He encouraged us to ask ourselves, “What is our why?” That is, why are we motivated to do what we do as educators?

When I listened to Mawi’s story about his mother, the furthest thing from my mind was answering the question of “why” as an educator. Instead, I was asking myself what my “why” was as a Christian. As I sat taking notes, I found myself writing down other words: Jesus, the cross, my sins. My mind kept wandering across the world to the cross where Jesus was crucified. Enduring pain, humiliation, and rejection, Jesus carried through on his promise to his children. Just before his death, Jesus asked a “why” question himself: “My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?” (Matthew 27:46, NLT).

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What was Jesus’ why? To save all people from their sins. This included those who rejected him, spat on him, and laughed at him. This includes those who today do the same.

What about you? You know the sacrifice Jesus made so that you could live. All Jesus asks in return is that you give your life to him and tell others of his wonderful journey: from life on earth, to death, to resurrection, to ascension into heaven. What’s your why? I don’t know about you, but if an average day of mine was put under scrutiny, I don’t think I’d like the answer to the question “what is Ron’s why?” I know what I would have to leave behind: my desire for material things, my need to climb the ladder at work, my dedication in ensuring my kids’ success, and my hours spent obsessing over my favorite sports team.

In Philippians 3:8-11, Paul talks of a life in Christ:
“Everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him. I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ. For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith. I want to know Christ and experience the mighty power that raised him from the dead. I want to suffer with him, sharing in his death, so that one way or another I will experience the resurrection from the dead!” (NLT)

Learn more about the New Living Translation, enjoy inspiring articles, sign up for free edevotions, and find your next Bible at www.newlivingtranslation.com.

Ron DeBoer is a writer and educator living near Toronto.

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How to Keep Breathing When All Seems Lost

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From the earliest days of our marriage, I longed for and prayed for a large family.

My dream of love-filled, chaotic Christmas mornings came true when my only son presented me with the six most precious grandchildren on earth. They lived hundreds of miles away, but miles can’t affect the love of a grandma.

Each phone call was a treasure and each visit a joy of epic proportions. Is there a treasure of more worth than a ringing phone followed by six little voices yelling in unison across the miles, “I love you, Mimi!”?

Fourteen years of ever-increasing grandparent bliss came to an abrupt end with a sudden and bitter divorce.

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Anger, hatred, and vengeance tore my world apart when my ex-daughter-in-law definitively declared my husband and I were no longer allowed any contact with our six little loves.

We had no rights or recourse.

The pain was beyond what words can convey. A good portion of our prayers were simply tears squeezed from broken hearts. “Why?” “What is the purpose?” “How can we I go on?”

It was six years before the first of our babies was old enough to re-establish contact. The sound of her voice on the phone bathed my shredded heart with a life-regenerating balm.

Twins

Over the next two years, two more of our precious ones came of age and chose to come back into our lives.

As I was in the process of directing the portrayal of Paul in Romans 8 of the NLT audio New Testament, Breathe, the fourth contacted us and came for a visit.

It was the first time we had even spoken to her in over ten years.

I listened in as the words of Paul, voiced by Kurt Naebig, sprang to life . . . and the words of God, penned by Paul, sprang to life within my heart:

God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God (Romans 8:28).

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Three of our grandchildren have chosen to relocate to be close to us and one visits and calls on a regular basis. But there are still two who have grown up outside our world.

The twins were only five years old the last time we saw those sweet little faces. It has been twelve years since we held them close.

We do not know the purpose in our lives or the lives of our grandchildren for the years of separation and pain.

But as I heard Kurt Naebig read Romans 8:28, I was impacted again with the fact that God has a plan for my life and my grandchildren’s lives.

True faith stands through times that seem hopeless, secure in the knowledge that all things work together for good.

Blow-in-the-windBlow-in-the-wind

Even when traumatic loss rips all sense from life—the Holy Spirit strengthens us, prays the prayers that are too agonizing to voice on our own —and allows us to walk forward, ever closer to the glory revealed to us through Jesus.

There are days when success is remembering to just breathe.

Just breathe deep…. and inhale the grace and goodness of God. 

And then—exhale the stress and the strains of life. 

There is a way to breathe—that exhales worries and inhales the Word. 

It’s a strange grace—how in the spaces between the words of His Words — our soul finds the space it desperately needs to finally breathe.

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The Breathe Bible Audio New Testament is a remarkably vivid listening experience that transports you into the world of the Bible. Performed in the New Living Translation by a cast of internationally acclaimed film, television and recording artists, this captivating multi-million dollar audio production features cinema-quality sound with an original music score. It’s an experience you will never forget. The Breathe Bible Audio New Testament—“It’s like being there.” Not only are 18 CDs are included in this premium audio product, it also includes a code to receive the user friendly mobile App for free! Listen however you like!

Learn more HERE.

This story was written by Brenda Noel and originally posted on Annvoskamp.com.

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Breathe Bible Giveaway (Plus get a FREE Gospel of Mark for signing up)!

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The Breathe Bible Audio New Testament is a remarkably vivid listening experience that transports you into the world of the Bible. Performed in the New Living Translation by a cast of internationally acclaimed film, television and recording artists, this captivating multi-million dollar audio production features cinema-quality sound with an original music score. It’s an experience you will never forget. The Breathe Bible Audio New Testament—“It’s like being there.” Not only are 18 CDs are included in this premium audio product, it also includes a code to receive the user friendly mobile App for free! Listen however you like!

Created by an award-winning team, this dramatic production features a cast of leading Hollywood entertainers, over 80 supporting actors, a full-orchestral score, and cutting-edge sound design. Stars of stage and film such as Kevin Sorbo (Voice of God), Josh Lucas (Jesus), John Rhys-Davies (narrator), Jesse McCartney (Matthew), Hill Harper (Mark), Corbin Bleu (John), Christian Stolte (Luke), Marshall Allman (John the Baptist), Wintley Phipps (Peter), and Bailee Madison (Young Mary Mother of Jesus) headline this $2 million production, bringing a new level of excitement to the forefront of Bible audio innovation. Features the New Living Translation, the first translation created to be read aloud.

Learn more at: BreatheBible.com 

Enter to win a FREE copy of the Breathe Bible and get a FREE Gospel of Mark for signing up! That’s over 2 hours of free audio just for singing up!

Here’s how to enter:

  • Fill out the Gleam form below.
  • Follow the directions for sharing to earn extra entries.
  • We’ll choose 25 winners on 3/26!
  • Must be 18 years old and a US resident to enter.

 

Breathe Bible Giveaway

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THE BATTLE OF MY LIFE by Joni Eareckson Tada

For 50 years I have survived as a spinal-cord injured quadriplegic. But that’s a walk-in-the-park compared to my battle against stage III breast cancer. Less than a week after I discovered the lump in my breast, I was at the doctors for a needle biopsy. As soon as the results were in, I was in the hospital for a mastectomy. Then, after several uncomfortable weeks of recovery, I was finally able to begin treatment – five months of chemotherapy. It all happened so fast, I hardly had time to process what was going on!

On the night before my first round of chemo, I read Jesus’ words in John 21:18, “… someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” Yes, that day my husband had to dress me and take me where I “did not want to go” – a dreary chemo clinic.

JoniinBlueI felt absolutely overwhelmed. After all, I’m a quadriplegic. Plus, I deal with chronic pain. I often thought, Lord, this feels like way too much for me to handle. Are you sure you know what you’re doing? Where you’re leading me? Yet sitting there, hooked up to an IV with a steady drip-drip of poison being infused into my veins, I knew the answer: “Who have I in heaven but you, Lord? There is nothing on earth that I desire above you; My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever” (Psalm 73:25-26).

Whenever I’ve prayed that way, the most extraordinary peace would wash over me. And so, during the three-hour chemo infusion, I would spend my time reading my Bible or praying through my intercession list. Often I would jot notes of encouragement to others. Once the infusion was over, I never tried to rush back to work; I was just too exhausted to do much more than head home for an early night.

My battle against cancer made life go slower. And given Galatians 5:25 which says “keep in step with the Spirit,” it’s obvious the Holy Spirit wanted me to take life in very small steps. It happens to anyone who suffers. Everything is more basic, more simple. I got up in the morning and prayed, “What will please you today, Lord?” I heard Him whisper, Seeing you eat 45 g of protein before lunch. “And what will please you this afternoon?” Back away from your computer and enjoy my hummingbirds at your feeder. “And this evening?” Give the Food Network a rest and pray.

Now that the most arduous part of cancer treatment is behind me, I wonder, what will the future hold? More than ever, I realize how brief, fleeting, and frail our lives are. We are but blips on the eternal screen; wisps of smoke, here one moment, and gone the next. That means what we do in the here and now counts. This is what I must remember on mornings when I feel like “I can’t take anymore.” Every day we either nudge our souls closer to heaven, or away from it – there’s never middle ground.

Yes, it’s been hard. Jesus hung on the cross so that we wouldn’t have to suffer hell, but not so that we wouldn’t have to suffer here on earth. This battle against cancer means something. So if you are dealing with a bad medical report – maybe even cancer — hang in there. God may just want you to live your life in very small steps, too. Yet take heart! Remember that your suffering is giving you something eternally precious in common with Christ!

 

About the Author:

Learn more about Joni here – http://www.joniandfriends.org/jonis-corner/jonis-bio/ 

Helpful Resources:

Beyond Suffering Bible NLT

Where Struggles Seem Endless, God’s Hope Is Infinite

by Joni and Friends, Inc

There is hardly a person who doesn’t know someone dealing with a disability, disease, chronic illness, or other form of personal suffering. The Beyond Suffering Bible is the first study Bible to directly address those who suffer and the people who love and care for them. From bestselling author, singer, and radio host Joni Eareckson Tada and the experts at Joni and Friends Christian Institute on Disability, the Beyond Suffering Bible is filled with thousands of notes and features that invite readers into a conversation about suffering and its place in each person’s life. Each feature has been carefully created to provide readers with valuable information, meaningful encouragement, and challenging applications as they encounter God’s Word.
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