The cancer patient’s primary goal is not beating cancer, being cured, being a survivor, making something good come out of something bad, positive thinking, or any number of important things. The primary goal, in fact the only thing that really and ultimately matters, is remaining faithful to Jesus Christ.
What does it mean, look like, to remain faithful to Jesus in spite of the uncertainty, fear, anxiety, agony, pain, suffering, unfairness, grief, anger, loss, and death, and everything else caused by cancer? It means we continue to acknowledge Jesus as our Lord and our God. (John 20:28). We continue to worship, praise, and thank him for everything. We speak and sing of his goodness and faithfulness in our lives, even in the midst of cancer. We continue to love him with our whole hearts, holding nothing back. We trust, pray, and wait patiently for the Lord, knowing he will save us. We continue to believe all God’s promises are fulfilled in Jesus. We are forgiven, loved, and we will live forever. He is always with us and for us, working in all things for our good (Romans 8:28).
We testify to Jesus’ work in our lives. We love and serve others in his name. We refuse to worship, glorify, or put our total trust in any one or anything other than Jesus.
Clarifying faithfulness as our goal will help us in multiple ways. As we grieve faithful friends lost to cancer, we can be encouraged. Though their life may have been “lost” to cancer, by remaining faithful to Jesus they secured the ultimate victory. They have joined the saints in heaven, worshipping endlessly, basking in God's love, resting in peace, awaiting the day when Jesus makes all things new new (Revelation 21:5).
In our journey today, through good days and bad, we can be comforted and reassured. You
don't have to be strong, survive, or beat cancer. You don't have to be able-bodied, healthy, pretty, or attractive. You don't have to be successful, wealthy, or powerful. God loves you just as you are. "By grace you have been saved through faith" (Ephesians 2:8). There is no pressure to perform. All you need to do is be faithful.
There are times when remaining faithful seems impossible. “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” (Mark 9:24). Take heart! God finds us faithful, not because of anything we do, but because of what Jesus has done. Because of his faithfulness to death on the cross, we are forgiven, loved, protected, and included in God's forever family, and considered faithful.
When we accept him as Savior and Lord, put our whole trust in him, his Holy Sprit enables us to remain faithful. Jesus is our faithfulness!
Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life. Revelation 2:10