Inside: Cancer is scary! How can we draw closer to God and lead others to God when someone has cancer? Find out how God and cancer can be a ministry!
*Disclosure: Post may contain affiliate links. See our full disclosure here.
We all know someone who has cancer or has had cancer.
When I hear this about someone, many times I’m at a loss of words.
I don’t want to say the wrong thing. I usually tell someone I’ll pray for them, but I wonder what else I can do to support them through cancer.
God and Cancer
Cancer is one of those words that usually takes us to worst-case scenarios.
Somehow we tend to equate the word cancer with death. But the fact of the matter is: many people are living as survivors from cancer.
If someone close to us is diagnosed with cancer, the first thing we have to remember is God is in control.
Pain and fear can create doubt and lead us from this fact.
How many of us go to “what if” scenarios and allow tension and anxiety to pull us down rabbit holes and make the situation so much worse.
The truth is: even in the struggles of cancer, God can still use us and make good things work out for us or our loved one.
God can be trusted, and this is the key to getting through this hard period. We can trust God in everything.
Our human reaction to the news of cancer is a feeling of instability. The dreams, plans, and routines we hold fast to now become toppled.
Doesn’t it all really point to the fact that, this was not part of our expectations of life.
We didn’t plan on this tough season, and we’re disappointed because it was not part of our plans?
Cancer And Emotions
The feelings of frustration and anxiety can hold a tight grip on us. We can also experience a roller coaster of emotions which might leave us feeling like we are unstable and
Let us remember that God made us in His image, and the emotions He gave us are true.
He doesn’t expect us to be emotionless or to stifle out these emotions.
It’s important to remember that everyone deals with cancer in their own way.
Some might initially step away from God until they find their footing and eventually return. Others grow closer to God and the relationship they have increases.
Supporting Someone With Cancer
One helpful thing we can do is give people
Sometimes people just need us to listen to them without having to add our own words and feelings to the situation.
How Do You Support Someone With A Cancer Diagnosis?
While many times, prayer can seem like such an insignificant gift, but when we realize that our prayer floods the gates of heaven, we see that it’s a huge gift we can give.
We can learn to pray more effective prayers by following these examples from Jesus to his disciples.
Here are other tangible ways we can be the hands and feet of Jesus:
- Bringing meals
- Running errands
- Doing laundry or cleaning
- Shuttle to appointments
- Pet sit and take pets out for walks.
Of course, each situation is going to have different needs and different ways to minister and support the person dealing with cancer.
Avoiding Mistakes When Supporting
Sometimes, we might inadvertently say the wrong thing to someone struggling with cancer.
- “You’re going to be fine.” This sets up a false hope for the cancer patient. Even the doctors can’t reassure someone of this.
- “Everything happens for a reason.” We know thatGod can use this, but we don’t want to shame the patient with this statement.
- “You don’t look sick”. What a blessing to not look sick, but it nullifies the experience and the suffering someone is going through.
- “My so-and-so had cancer, and this is what happened to them.” Yikes, I’ve found myself here saying this. Every situation is different and every cancer patient is different.
In this delicate time, we want to encourage and propel the patient forward.
If we don’t know what to say, the best is to sometimes listen and get our mouths closed.
Using God’s Word to Minister
As a Christian, we have the great opportunity to minister to those struggling.
16 That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are[a] being renewed every day. 17 For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! 18 So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.
31 But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.
They will soar high on wings like eagles.
They will run and not grow weary.
They will walk and not faint.
6 So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the
Lordyour God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.
No one wants to be diagnosed with cancer, and it’s painful when it’s a loved one.
As Christians, we can be assured that God is with us, and the Holy Spirit can empower us to minister and lead those around us to keep trusting and hoping in the promises of God.
(Jeremiah 29:11, NLT).
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
God and Cancer: Finding Hope in the Midst of Life’s TrialsDear God, They Say It’s Cancer: A Companion Guide for Women on the Breast Cancer JourneyPraying Through CancerEmbraced: 100 Devotions to Know God Is Holding You Close50 Days of Hope: Daily Inspiration for Your Journey through Cancer