happy groaning…

Radiation is going well and starting to take it’s toll. It’s a lot better than chemo, but I’m definitely starting to feel the fatigue/weakness combined with some aching and a sore throat. Every day when I lay down on the treatment table, the Holy Spirit brings 2 Corinthians 4-5 to mind (which I wrote more about in this post.)

God refers to our earthly body as a tabernacle—or a tent—a temporary dwelling place, not designed to last long (like the one in the photo above.) He explains in 2 Corinthians 5 that one day this “tent” will be taken down and we will receive a building of God, not made with hands, eternal. In contrast to a tent, our new bodies in Heaven are compared to a building—an eternal, incorruptible body waiting to be occupied. What an awesome promise!

As treatment begins each day, the technicians line me up and fasten on my mask. Then I stretch my arms behind my head and and lay immobile. The room is quiet. Technicians have left. It’s just me and the Lord, and a a large machine. For some reason, it’s a very vulnerable feeling. It’s in that moment that I return to 2 Corinthians 5 and begin talking to the Lord about my tent. It goes something like this.

“Ok, Lord… here we are again. This 42-year-old tent is yours. You allowed it to become sick. You have allowed it to be weakened over the past 8 months. You have healed it by poisoning it. And now you’re ordaining that it be radiated. I’m just the renter—the temporary occupant. You’re the owner, and you’ve already created a better body for me—I look forward to occupying it someday. So for now, you just do with this tent whatever you desire. I know this radiation will make me tired. I know it is doing both damage as well as some good. Use it to kill whatever cancer remains. But most of all, just use it for your purposes. If you want to zap it with radiation, it’s all yours.”

By the time that prayer is done, so is the teatment. The therapists return to the room, loose my shackles, and send me on my way until tomorrow.

Having a tent—a temporary body—is sometimes a hassle. Paul explained that “in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from Heaven.” In other words, the problems of being in an earthly body cause us to groan with desire for a better one—a perfect one! How true. I’ve done a lot of groaning over the past eight months. But it’s not “bad attitude groaning”—it’s more or less anticipatory groaning.

So, whatever your trial or physical hardship, if you know Christ, you have a better body waiting. You’ll do some groaning in this earthly body, but as you do, don’t lose sight of God’s purposes and promises. Yield your tent once again to God and let Him accomplish His will in your life. He’s already promised that your new, perfect, and eternal body is ready and waiting! I wish I could have mine delivered to my home tomorrow!

Happy groaning!

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7 Responses to happy groaning…

  1. Your two posts today are just what I needed in light of what I shared with you a few weeks ago. Thank you for allowing God to use you during this difficult time in your life. We continue to pray for you.

  2. Mom says:

    You make me laugh and you make me cry, but mostly you make me proud. I am so very thankful that God chose me. to be your Mom. You are a blessing to many, but none more than your old Mom. Love you and praying for you.

  3. Brianna says:

    Thank you so much, Bro. Schmidt, for allowing so many people to journey with you. How our family is encouraged and amazed at your wonderful spirit. I can say that I know how there is a lot of pain, but I can’t say that I truly know what it’s like. You have kept a strong, sweet spirit through this trial, and I believe that spirit is the greatest blessing that our family has received from LBC. You’re in our prayers!

  4. Kelli Royal says:

    What an incredible blessing this was to me. It really spoke to my heart – and to my broken body. Thank you : )

  5. Lynn Fanelli says:

    Brother Schmidt thank you so much for standing faithful during this time of trial. You are an amazing christian man and it has been my privilege to know you and your family. We are praying for you and for your family that God will continue to heal and strengthen you through this.

  6. jessica de la pena says:

    Wow Bro Schmidt,

    I just want to thank you so much for allowing the Lord to flow through you. I know this is so very hard. My mother passed away several years ago from Breast cancer. We went through so many ups and downs. I too suffer from some chronic painful conditions that leave me very tired and weak and fearful. You are right it does seem the hardest times is when we are in the heat of the pain, thoughts of uncertainty and so forth. But our GOD is Always in CONTROL. This thought truly reassures me in the midst of my pain. Thank you for reminding me that some day we will receive a new body.
    AMEN
    Jessica

  7. Pam Hastings says:

    I have read your blog that chronicles your entire journey since learning of your cancer and I have been amazed, encouraged, and blessed by your humor, your insight and most importantly your intense focus on the Lord throughout your trial. I am thankful for your example of always looking to Christ with a desire to glorify him and to be a help to others. May God bless you richly for being so faithful to Him !

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