Harder Family

Harder Family

Tuesday, March 31, 2015


Mark 14:35-36 "And going a little farther, He fell on the ground and prayed that, if it were possible, the hour might pass from Him. And He said, 'Abba, Father, all things are possible for You. Remove this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what You will.'"

Surrender is defined as yielding to the power of another, to give oneself up, to relinquish. It takes a lot of trust and faith to completely surrender. Easter is quickly approaching. The time of year that we celebrate the death and resurrection of our Savior. As I was thinking about Easter this morning, the verses above reminded me that Jesus had to surrender. He knew coming to earth that there was a perfect plan in place, for Him to be the ultimate sacrificial lamb for His people. John 1:29 "The next day John saw Jesus coming to him and said, "Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!" Jesus knew what He was going to face on that cross and He asked God that if the cup could be removed from Him, to do it. It is the words after that statement that say so much. He says, "YET not what I will, but what You will." Jesus was willing to completely surrender Himself to death for us. He experienced unimaginable pain and sorrow as He was nailed to that cross. It was love for us that drove Him to the cross and ultimately, obedience to His Father. 

As I mentioned yesterday, I have been wrestling with God. In some ways I feel like Jacob the night he wrestled with the angel of the Lord (Gen. 32:24-25). I have been pleading with the Lord to spare Wayne's life and at the same time, praying that He is glorified in whatever outcome He desires. I can see good in both outcomes, as odd as that sounds. I can see how God would be magnified and glorified if He brought complete healing to Wayne. What a story that would be and what an impact that would have on other's lives. On the other hand, I see how God could use his death to bring Him glory. People would see that their time on earth is short and that the time to make a decision for God is now. (2 Corinthians 6:2) Back and forth I have been praying and struggling, asking God what His plan is for us. Throw on top of that all the unknowns of this wretched cancer. Do we start treatment now? If we do, will that limit the trials he can get on? Do we gamble and wait to start treatment until after we go to Mayo? What supplements or diet can I get him on to help his chances? On and on the internal struggle has gone on. After much prayer, we have decided to go ahead and start traditional treatment now. We will begin chemo and radiation and run that course for six weeks. After that time, we will take the trip up to Mayo and see what we can find out from them. We are trusting that if God has a trial He wants Wayne on, He'll get him on it. I'm sure I will have to continue to daily surrender Wayne to the Lord. It is hard to let go of control and, possibly, let go of someone you love. I'm not giving up hope. I know that God could heal him, but I also know that sometimes God's ways are not our ways. Wayne is at peace with everything and I'm slowly getting there. Peace can only truly come when we completely surrender to God and let Him work everything out. I'll just make myself sick and crazy trying to do everything on my own to help Wayne. Yes, we'll keep trying things and moving in the right direction, but, as Wayne has said, it is ultimately up to God.

Getting back to Easter, the best part we celebrate is when Jesus rose from the grave conquering death. I can rest knowing that even if it is in God's plan to take Wayne home, I will see him again in heaven where we will worship God together. (2 Corinthians 5, Revelations 5:11-12) It is a beautiful thing to think about and reflect upon. God in His great mercy and plan has been teaching me and Wayne so much about who He is this past year. We have been asking Him to show us His glory and teach us about Himself, to have the right mindset while here on earth. This is ultimately not our home, our home is in heaven with Him. Our time here is to prepare ourselves and others for that day when every tongue will confess Him as Lord. (Philippians 2:10-11) 

As I have been reflecting and looking back at the past few months, some of my favorite moments with Wayne have been when we have been able to worship the Lord together. The Lord meets us there and we have experienced just a taste of who He is, which has made us long for more. I heard an illustration in a sermon I was listening to last night that talked about a man who "traveled" from the middle of a country to the ocean. He was so floored by the beauty and vastness of the ocean and the treasures it held that he wanted to carry it back to the people back where he lived. He dipped his hand in the ocean to bring some of it back. When he got back home, he tried showing them what was in his hands, but of course all of it had fallen out and nothing was left for them to see. He then realized that until someone experiences the beauty for themselves, you cannot express to them how wonderful it is. The illustration was talking about beholding God and seeing Him for who He is. There is no way to ever understand Him completely as His attributes are unlimited (imagine the vast ocean). When we start to see Him for who He really is, we are just experiencing a dip of our hand in that ocean. It is amazing to see and experience Him. We try to tell others about how wonderful He is, but until they go to the ocean and experience it themselves, they will never truly understand it. 

As much as I don't want to lose Wayne, I'm reflecting about how awesome it will be when he gets up to heaven and gets to worship God in person. He'll get to experience God in His complete glory. His prayers of knowing God and experiencing Him will be answered in absolute completeness. What a beautiful picture and a great reminder to keep pursuing God and His glory while here on earth. This life is so distracting and has so many things pulling our eyes off of Him. May each of us continue to run the race with perseverance, keeping our eyes on Jesus, the ultimate prize! He deserves nothing less then our complete surrender to Him!!! Hebrews 12:1-2 "Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us and for being so transparent. Something most shy away from today. I am an adoption fb friend of your sister Sarah, and we have been praying for your family since she posted about it. Thank you for pointing us to Jesus, in something that many of us fear the most. It is the darkest of places that His light shines the brightest, and thank you for shining. Reminding me daily that I must make the most of today for the glory of God. Praying you see His fingerprints around you today and sense His presence, along with Wayne and your littles.