Written By Jalen Galvez, Philippines
In 2016, my mom was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer.
When I heard the news, I couldn’t help but ask God why. There were many questions in my mind, and I couldn’t stop thinking about them. It was hard for me to face the situation that my family and I were going through, because it was something that we didn’t expect. Of course, my faith was shaken too. Why did it have to be my mom?
Waiting is hard, especially when we don’t know what the outcome of our prayers would be. I struggled a lot during that time, because I desperately wanted an assurance from God Himself that there was a reason and purpose for all this. I doubted Him, because I didn’t know when and how God would answer my prayers. That’s the hardest part of waiting. But as I continually sought God through prayer and His Word, He helped me realize that He was working as we waited.
Days after we found out about my mother’s condition, I was doing my personal devotion at the school library as usual. I prayed that God would reveal Himself to me through His Word, and proceeded to read my Bible. That day I happened to be reading Luke 8:40-56, where Jesus heals Jairus’ daughter. In Luke 8:50, Jesus comforts Jairus, “Don’t be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed.”
Upon reading this, I was instantly comforted. I truly felt that perhaps God would heal my mother! More importantly, I was reassured that God would work through this situation and comfort us as we keep out gaze fully focused on Him—and we needn’t be afraid of our circumstances or what might happen in the future.
There Is A Purpose to Our Waiting
I’ve learned that in every season of waiting, God has a purpose. Romans 5:3-5 reminds us:
Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.
Our trials require us to live and depend on the grace that God provides. Through this experience, I’ve learned that every waking hour is God’s grace to us. As I opened my heart to His Word and grew in my love for the Lord, I was assured that no matter what happens, I can hold firm to the knowledge that God works all things together for good (Romans 8:28).
While we wait for Him to work in our lives, it is an opportunity for us to grow our patience, stretch our hearts, and surrender our lives to God. I first surrendered my life to God in 2012, when I became a Christian and was baptized. During this difficult time, I’ve had to remind myself again and again, “Hey, you’ve surrendered your whole life to Jesus, so He’s got this one covered.” I had to consciously remind myself, whatever happened, I could still put my faith in God.
Waiting is not wasting. While we pray for our desires to be answered, let us keep our eyes open to the greatness of the Lord. God’s time table might be different from ours. His plans do not need our approval. Even if we don’t know how our prayers might be answered, let us be assured that God is working behind the scenes.
Even when we feel like we are drowning in an ocean of fears, worries, and sadness, let us be reminded that God knows what He is doing with our lives. Sometimes it is only when we go through deep waters that we can look up to the One who can save us from drowning—Jesus. All that He requires of us to wait on Him with child-like faith, trusting that He is a Father who cares deeply about our lives.
My mom is currently undergoing oral chemotherapy. This is an answer to prayer, since our family hoped that she could avoid intravenous chemotherapy. This is her last session of oral chemotherapy. While she hasn’t been declared cancer-free yet, we sincerely hope that she will be fully healed! But regardless of what happens, we trust that God is in control and will be with us every step of the way.
Your grace is the only thing
That keeps me through
I will wait for You.