There is something about watching a little child, a friends, family members, or perhaps your own, as they come to the point in their infancy when they no longer want to crawl anymore, they want to walk! They have been crawling long enough on hands and knees. Mom and dad have been lifting their child upright, holding tightly onto their little, soft hands, encouraging him/her to take a baby step, than another and another. When their child seems to be doing well assisted, they begin to let go and they encourage their child to, “walk to momma or to poppa.” The child does well, mostly, there are some trips and falls here and there, but overall, the child improves and stays balanced longer, travels a greater distance and eventually, as is supposed to happen, takes off running! And life with baby is never quite the same.
Our new life in Christ is a lot like that, isn’t it? We were once enemies of God (Romans 5:10; Colossians 1:21), and children of darkness (Acts 27:18; Romans 5:8), that have now through the sacrificial, atoning work of Jesus Christ, been made “new creations” in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:17). We begin this new life in Christ as little babies, infantile in our understanding on how we are to walk as “children of God.” We begin with the milk of the Word (1 Peter 2:2-3), because we are not yet ready or able to gain the necessary spiritual nutrients we need until we mature a bit, get steady legs under us, if you will, and then, in time, we mature and are than able to have the meat of the Word (1 Corinthians 3:1-3).
Part of growing up as a Christian is learning how to walk. How to walk with faith that the Lord is sovereign over our lives, over all things, and He will make our paths straight (Proverbs 3:5-6). That is not always easy is it? If you are interested in learning more about God this book can help. Click on picture below and get a copy.
I have found that many times in my Christian life, when things were out of my control (like they always are), my “walk” of faith during those times felt much more like a crawl than it did a walk. I found that while my spirit was willing, ready to walk boldly, by faith, into the great unknown of my future; my flesh, that un-redeemed part of me, knocked the legs right out from under me, and like a baby crawling on its hands and knees, to move ever forward, I too was crawling, struggling to move ahead with any certain hope for the future.
This was the case back in May of 2008, when my oldest daughter was diagnosed with cancer (Acute promyelocytic leukemia). We had just purchased our new home and were scarcely settled in, when everyone in our family, all five of us, were battling some stage of the common cold. During this time we felt that Bri, who was home from school because of being sick, was doing better, so we sent her back to school.
She was not there long when her grandma, who worked at the school, thought she looked somewhat jaundice (skin looking yellow). So, off to the doctor, where they checked her out and did blood tests.
Later that day is when our challenge to walk by faith and not sight presented itself. The doctor called our home and notified my wife that all Bri’s blood counts were low and she needed to get her to the hospital right away, they would be waiting for her. Marcy took her and they did many extensive tests. That evening the doctor came into the room to talk with us about what they found.
Bri was sitting upright on the bed and I was sitting in a chair next to her. I remember when the doctor told us the devastating news, “we found cancer.” We embraced, we cried. I sought to encourage her, to give her hope amidst despair after the doctor left our room. I told her that we must trust God through the bad times as well as the good, that He has a plan and that He will work this out for good, even if we don’t understand it or are happy about it. That day was the beginning of several days watching, what I thought at the time, was my sweet, beautiful teenage girl, dying.
I did my best to walk by faith, to stand strong in my confidence that this would turn out for good. To many, as I have been told over the years, I was a man, we were a family, that they were encouraged by, because we were exhibiting great faith amidst such terrible circumstances. They didn’t see me/us bent over in anguish of soul, crying, pleading, with the Lord. They didn’t hear the confusing and often painful thoughts as they hounded us day and night. Our spiritual knees were knocked out from underneath us: crawling, by faith, we moved slowly, painfully, forward.
Some circumstance of life, like this or a bit different, have challenged or even hindered many Christians walk of faith over the centuries; you may be thinking of one of your own right now. I know its painful to remember, and I am glad you made it through it. I find encouragement in Colossians 2:6: “Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him (italics mine), rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.”
We may never in this life understand why our loving Father in Heaven allowed such things to enter into our lives, but we can be assured He knows what He is doing. And somehow, in someway unknown to us, He receives glory! And that is enough for me to “abound in thanksgiving.”
My daughter is now married and has two children and she is cancer free! I do not only speak for myself when I say we now know that her cancer was a gift from our loving Father, and He has been kind in allowing us to comprehend some of the amazing things He had done in her life and the lives of others because of it.
And that brings me to the reasoning behind the name of this blog. The phrase “7 ways from Sunday,” is one of many variations of a common phrase, “6 ways from Sunday” or “seven ways to Sunday.” All of these phrases mean the same thing, “every way imaginable.” It’s a way of expressing that a person has tried everything and has not come up with an answer, or solved a problem.
I confess, this is a phrase that may be a bit dated. Ask anyone under the age of 40 and they will probably look at you funny. Anyone over 40 has most likely heard it being used when they were growing up and knows that it means that a person has tried every thing that they can think of before calling it quits. So, they give up on solving the problem they are facing. Think about it, once a person has concluded that they tried everything and are telling you they tried everything “7 ways from Sunday,” you know that he/she has been pretty determined and resolute in their efforts before giving up on solving the problem or working through their issue.
And that is where this blog site steps in! By picking up where someone else has left off, by using scripture to guide us with a clear, biblical focus (2 Timothy 3:16), we can tackle the problem together, we can be equipped to continue on our walk of faith as we think anew the providence of God over all things, and I believe, arrive at solutions God has lovingly and wisely provided for us in His Word!
“The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble, and He knows those who take refuge in Him (Nahum 1:7).”
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