I miss Nanci every day, but I am profoundly thankful for the tremendous example she left me, and the way she mentored me and discipled me as she actively pursued God. She received from Him dying grace so powerful that at times it was startling. What a privilege to have seen it and her close up.
In the journal she kept throughout her cancer years, Nanci wrote these reflections about the healing Jesus accomplished on the cross:
“But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed. All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet Yahweh laid on him the sins of us all” (Isaiah 53:5-6 NLT, emphasis added).
This is the healing that really matters. I needed, and have received in full measure, a healing from my guilt and sins. No physical healing compares to complete spiritual healing.
We were all born with stage-four guilt and sin. Nothing we could do ourselves could cure it. No “treatments” performed by mankind are effective for its eradication.
God has provided a cure only He can administer. “Yahweh laid on Christ the guilt and sin of us all.” Our guilt and sin are not incurable! We can be healed because Christ provided the only treatment; and He took the treatment for us. He was our substitute in the infusion room, in the radiation room, and in the operating room. The treatment was radical, and the cure was permanent.
Praise God for my healing from guilt and sin! Any CT or MRI of my soul would reveal “no evidence of sin.” I have been given eternal life. Nothing can cause guilt to metastasize in my soul. I am cleared permanently to enter into God’s presence. This is the promise that brings me pure joy and complete hope every day.
Later she wrote:
I have been so focused on God annihilating my cancer that my focus has not been on the blessed truth that He has annihilated my sin! My body (pre–Resurrection) is a gift from God—but most surely a temporary gift. So far, it has served me for close to 67 years. My soul, my very existence, is also a gift from God—and most surely an eternal gift. (And one day He will resurrect and heal my body, permanently.) I want my focus to be on God’s saving grace! God has accomplished the work of redemption for my soul. He has thoroughly and eternally saved me! I don’t need to worry that someday a “scan” or some other test will reveal anything that threatens my soul. Jesus has cured me eternally of my sin and given me eternal life. And no one can snatch me out of His redemptive hands!
I pray for a day when my fight against cancer is won. Praise God that the battle for my soul is already won!
The physical wounds on Christ’s body brought healing to our wounded souls. I have been praying for physical healing from cancer for over three years. However, my greater—my ultimate—need is healing from sin. Jesus has accomplished that! My physical needs pale in comparison with my spiritual needs. My eternal soul is reconciled to God forever because Christ paid the penalty for my sins.
May Nanci’s closing prayer be true of us all: Lord, please give me an even deeper sense of gratitude and awe for my position in Christ with God.For more on Christ's sacrifice for us, see Randy's books It's All About Jesus and Face to Face with Jesus.
Photo by Christi Marcheschi on Unsplash
Randy Alcorn (@randyalcorn) is the author of over sixty books and the founder and director of Eternal Perspective Ministries.