Thank you. I look at this book – these 264 pages – and I am incredibly thankful. It’s true, I’m thankful for the opportunity to pen down the story of our family. I’m thankful to be in a relationship with others who believe in the story. I’m thankful for the chance to speak into other people’s lives in some small way.
But I’m mainly thankful this morning for what the book represents. I remember, some 5 years ago, feeling like the world was falling apart as we sat at the children’s hospital and heard the cancer diagnosis of our little boy. And this morning, I sat across the breakfast table from the same little boy, his cowlick shooting straight up into the air from sleep as he concentrated over his waffles and told me about the chapter he read in his book last night.
What amazing manner of grace is this.
I think today back over years of chemotherapy, sadness, dashed dreams and lost time, and I do not hear a promise from You that those things will ever come back. They are gone, blown to the wind. Nor do I hear from You a trite explanation of “why” for Joshua’s cancer. You’ve never told us why, and I doubt You ever will. Surely not because of this book.
But today, our hope after these years is not in knowing answers, for You know that answers are not the soothing balm to pain that we think they ought to be. In the end, the answers matter little. But You matter much. And I thank You, that in Your wisdom, You give us Yourself rather than the answers we so crave.
You, and you alone, have sustained us through these years. On that day, 5 years ago, I wondered if You would. And yet You did.
I ask You, Father, to take these paltry words on these 264 pages – our Ebeneezer – and use it in a great way. I pray that the downtrodden would be lifted up. I pray that the hurting would be encouraged. I pray that all those who have sat in hospital waiting rooms might look in these pages and find a testimony not of a strong family, but of an immensely strong God who upholds the weak and is near to those who are crushed in spirit.
That is what You have been to us.
And for those who might not have sat in such a situation but will… For those as yet untouched by disease but will be… For those who are compelled to read these words out of curiosity rather than need… I pray they would find a God described here that they can absolutely trust.
This is the story You have seen fit to give us. I pray for the grace to steward it well.
In Jesus Name,