January 12

God Doesn’t Change

Bible Reading: Psalm 102:25-28; Hebrews 13:8: James 1:17

My wife Laura has Stage IV Metastatic Cancer.  She received her diagnosis almost five years ago, after she had dealt with a mysterious back pain for nearly six months.  Cancer changes everything.  Laura was incredibly active before all that.  She admirably fulfilled her roles as a wife and mom and Pastor’s wife and teaching aide.  The cancer had spread mostly to her backbone and caused three compression fractures and a compromised back.  After receiving radiation treatments to shrink a tumor on her spine, she was fitted with a back brace and given a 5lb weight limit of what she could lift.  The cancer treatments left her with a weakened immune system and she contracted shingles (a common occurrence for cancer patients).  The shingles rash eventually disappeared, but she was left with a condition called Post Herpetic Neuralgia, which inflicts her with a chronic pain which she deals with 24/7.  

As a result of Laura’s cancer, we made the decision to move close to our grandkids.  We sold our dream home, left our hometown and our beloved church family (the church I’d pastored for almost 30 years) to move to be near our grandkids.  Every month we make a trip to Kennewick to the oncologist and palliative care specialist to review her blood counts and treatment plan.  She’s now on her third distinct treatment regimen, the first two having run their course.  But God is good–He’s provided the best of medical care for her.  We’ve many friends who pray for her and she has maintained a wonderful attitude through it all, trusting Jesus and finding positive ways to love and serve others (as she has always been prone to do).  By God’s grace she’s been an inspiration to me and others!

I say all of that, not to garner sympathy, though your prayers for us are always gladly welcomed, but to illustrate that life is full of change.  That’s true for all of us.  We change.  Our circumstances change.  Indeed, these days are not only filled with many changes, but it seems as if change is happening at a faster rate.

There is comfort in the realization God does not change.  God is unchanging in the perfection of His attributes.  God is omnipotent, He cannot grow stronger and will not weaken.  His infinite knowledge and wisdom will never increase or diminish.  His love will never be more, or less than it has always been.  We have bad days, God does not.  We experience mood swings, God does not.  Our strength and ability to remember things diminish with age, but not so with God.  He is unchanging in His purpose, His promises and in His Word.  “The grass withers, and the flowers fade, but the word of our God stands forever” (Isaiah 40:8).  The heavens and the earth themselves will pass away, but God will remain the same (Psalm 102:25-28).

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).  The Jesus who brought you “out of darkness into His marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9) is the same Jesus who is even now at the right hand of God “interceding for (you)” (Romans 8:34). He is the same Jesus who will one day “transform (your) lowly body to be like his glorious body” (Philippians 3:21).  How reassuring is this!

A.W. Tozer, “What peace it brings to the Christian’s heart to realize our Heavenly Father never differs from Himself. In coming to Him we need not wonder if we will find Him in a receptive mood…Today, this moment, He feels towards His creatures, toward babies, toward the sick, the fallen, the sinful, exactly as He did when He sent His only begotten Son into the world to die for mankind.”

“Yet, in the maddening maze of things,

And tossed by storm and flood,

To one fixed trust my spirit clings;

I know that God is good!”

John Greenleaf Whittier

Author: looking2jesus13

Having served as pastor at Lewis and Clark Bible Church, in Astoria, Oregon, for almost three decades, my wife’s cancer diagnosis led to my retirement and subsequent move to Heppner to be near our two grandchildren. I divide my time between caring for Laura and working as a part time hospice chaplain and spending time with family and spoiling my chocolate lab.

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