Sunday, August 17, 2008

Healer

One of my heroes in the faith is T.J. Benton. T.J. and Janet are long time members of Hunters' Glen. T.J. plays bass in our worship team and is the embodiment of a servant leader. I'll never forget the first time I met him. He introduced himself as being on the team but told me to use him however I felt led. He was willing to help but didn't expect to. I decided then and there to use T.J. on a regular basis.

What I didn't know was that T.J. has been battling cancer for 10 years. The type of cancer he has is very rare. By the grace of God, he has defied the doctors and has lived beyond what they thought possible. It's not been easy though. He has had surgery after surgery to remove tumors and has undergone extensive chemotherapy. In the past year alone since I've been here, his health has forced him to take breaks from playing on several occasions.

This week, a tumor was found on his spine that has numbed his legs to where he cannot walk. It was like a punch in the gut to hear this news. So I went to see him and Janet on Friday to take them a wheelchair. He was in the same high spirits he usually is in. He's determined to praise Jesus no matter what. Be praying for him this week as he travels to Houston to seek treatment.

I tried to imagine how I would live with the knowledge that I had a terminal illness. I don't think I would do as well as T.J. It just didn't seem fair to me that faithful Christians like T.J. and Janet should have to suffer like this. I have to admit I left our meeting feeling a bit down.

Boy, did God just change my perspective. I was surfing the internet when I stumbled across just what I needed on my buddy Jeff Bumgardner's blog. Please, do yourself a favor and take a few minutes to watch this video. The song is off Hillsong's latest worship project, "This Is Our God." It was written and performed by Mike Guglielmucci, a cancer patient and brother in Christ.

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