I wonder whether you have had a scare through the possible diagnosis of cancer or some other life-threatening disease? I can recommend this book for all Christians to read, even before they get a scare or serious diagnosis. The story and its message will probably make you read it to the end in one good session!
When faced with this scare we might feel guilty if our first reaction were outright fear. But this testimony is a helpful reminder that God is sovereign over illness and death, and indeed that ‘my God is true’ to his promises and keeping power in times of serious illness.
Fear can be alleviated. God still loves us very dearly and can be trusted to work out his purposes, even when we can’t see them, for our ultimate good.
Paul Wolfe discovered that he had cancer in April 1999. The cause of his back pain was diagnosed as a malignant mass next to his spinal cord. His reaction, along with that of his wife, was: ‘Anger. Helplessness. Fear. A deathly chill’. No super-spirituality there!
Over the next few months, he was treated with surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy, and suffered a bout of pneumonia in the middle. He was fully cleared of cancer by March 2000, in God’s grace.
The book’s subtitle is ‘Lessons learned along cancer’s dark road’. Paul Wolfe was already a pastor in training when his diagnosis came. As he looks back from that perspective, he is able to weave solid teaching on God’s control, love and sovereignty into his story of pain and uncertainty.
The book’s three parts — discovery, endurance, and life — each bring an uplifting and biblical perspective, relevant to the author’s major medical experiences. The hymn which is quoted in full as the basis for this narrative is ‘Whate’er my God ordains is right’ (Samuel Rodigast).