What a thought this is....that God not only takes you and me into His thoughts, but even thinks about a little sparrow!  And read what it says in Matthew 10:29: that not one of them will fall to the ground apart from the will of our Father!

Yesterday, I received some unwelcomed news...that cancer had re-surfaced in my body.  When my doctor called me into her office, I already could tell by the look on her face that it was not good...but I used that opportunity to encourage her...that life is only a preparation for death, but that for someone who has Jesus in their heart, there is an extraordinary grace and peace that allows us to know all things are in His hands...that when we have eternal life through salvation in Him, then we know where we are going and can face anything that comes with the belief in His goodness and perfect plan for our lives.

So I did not cry or break apart...rather, I ended up praying for her, as it was her birthday.  Afterwards, with tears in her eyes, she hugged me and said, "I am so glad you are a Christian!"  So am I.

For a year now, I have been writing you all now and then with things God would lay on my heart to share.  I thank each of you that have spent time in prayer for me, and for all the letters you have written.  Such a mantle of comfort from the body of Christ!  I pray that the things I have sent you might have met a need for a particular moment of trial or encouraged you in some way.  Remember, never, never blame God when things don't go the way you think they should....trusting God is just that; believing and accepting His wisdom for our lives and praising Him always, in every trial.


One of my favorite books is "In My Father's House" by Corrie Ten Boom.  In it, she spoke of a time when her mother took her and her sister Nollie to visit a woman whose baby had died.  "In that shabby room was a crib with a baby inside.  Nollie stood next to the crib and touched the baby's cheek.  Feel that!" she said to me.  "It's so cold."

I touched the little hand, and then ran to my mother and buried my face in her lap.  I had touched death for the first time, and it seemed that the impression of cold remained with me for hours and hours.

When we returned home, I ran up the narrow stairs to my bedroom and leaned against the antique chest of drawers.  There was an enormous fear in my heart--almost terror.  In my imagination, I pictured the future in which I saw myself all alone, my family gone, and myself left desolate. (All of this would eventually come to pass).  My family was my security, but that day I saw death, and knew that they could die too.  I had never thought about it before.

The dinner bell rang downstairs, and I was so grateful to go to the big oval table, and get warm again, and feel the security of being with my family.  I thought how stupid the grown-ups would think I was if I told them about the fear which was still in my heart.

I ate dinner quietly that night, which was not easy when you are in the midst of such a lively family.  Our dinner table spilled over with conversation.

After dinner, Father took the he always did, and began to read the lines from Psalms 46:2.

"Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea..."

I sat up straight in my chair and stared at my father.  I didn't know much about mountains, living in flat, flat Holland, but I certainly knew a lot about fear.  I thought Papa must have known exactly what my problem was that night.

My faith in Papa, and in the words he read from the Bible, was absolute.  If they said not to fear, then God would take care of it.  I felt secure again.


Child, you could be facing the same thing, or things much worse.  Remember this...none of us knows our time.  Little babies die, teenagers die.  Life is full of uncertainties.  But physical death is a certainty for all of us unless we are alive when He returns.  You must not fear death...Jesus conquered it long ago.  And though we may go through the valley of the shadow of death, we are not to fear...He is with us!  We can actually rejoice with great joy, knowing all things are under His control...that though we many not understand it, all things do work together for good to them that are called according to His purpose.

I have undergone many tests to determine if the cancer was coming from the original source, or if it was a new thing.  At any rate, I have since gone to the Seattle area for surgery, and now I am so happy to be back home enjoying spring lawn already is in need of a haircut!   

I am still believing God to raise me up again (as He has so many times before) and let me visit my beloved dear friends in Asia once more.  But you know...if not, I thank Him for a life well spent in great joy and rejoicing at all He has done for me...and one day we will not all have to send emails to keep in touch, but like the little sparrows, we will rejoice together with Him.

How cheap...the price of a sparrow.  Yet even that insignificant one-among-billions cannot fall without the will of the Father.  Neither can you or I.


© 2002