“When trouble comes our way, nothing in God’s character and promise and word has changed. It’s true. Even this will be redeemed and used for God’s glory and your good.” -January 27, 2019 sermon.
As many of you know, Brent Parke was diagnosed with cancer this month and is in the process of getting a biopsy and treatment plan at Ohio State’s James Cancer Center. Through the ups and downs of an emotional rollercoaster in the aftermath of this news, Brent has been consistently strengthened and encouraged by the truths found in some of his favorite Christian songs. God has used these lyrics to remind Brent of His goodness and faithfulness, even when life seems to have been ‘flipped turned upside down’ in an instant.
Brent shared 12 of his favorites with us in hopes that they’ll encourage you as well. Check out the YouTube music playlist for his cancer battle here. For each title below, he’s listed a key phrase from the lyrics that really ministered to him and a short sentence summarizing why the meaning of that particular song has been so helpful.
As you listen, please be praying for Brent as well as others in our church family who are dealing with significant health issues!
SHOULDERS (For King and Country)
What it says: “My help comes from You. You’re right here pulling me through. You carry my weakness, my sickness, my brokenness all on Your shoulders.”
Why it matters: It’s too much to carry all on your own.
MAYBE IT’S OK (We Are Messengers)
What it says: “Maybe it’s ok if I’m not ok, ‘Cause the One who holds the world is holding onto me. Maybe it’s alright if I’m not alright, ‘Cause the One who holds the stars is holding my whole life.”
Why it matters: As Christians, we are not always going to be ok, but God is in control.
VOICE OF TRUTH (Casting Crowns)
What it says: “But the voice of truth tells me a different story. The voice of truth says, ‘Do not be afraid!’ The voice of truth says, ‘This is for My glory.’ Out of all the voices calling out to me, I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth.”
Why it matters: There are many things that run through your mind in a tough situation, but we must focus on God’s Biblical truths.
MENDED (Matthew West)
What it says: “You must, you must think I’m strong, to give me what I’m going through. Well, forgive me, forgive me if I’m wrong, but this looks like more than I can do, on my own.”
Why it matters: We don’t have to be strong on our own; God will give us the strength.
CAST MY CARES (Finding Favour)
What it says: “This war’s not what I would have chosen, but You see the future no one knows yet. And You’re still good when I can’t see the working of Your hands. You’re holding it all. I will cast my cares on You.”
Why it matters: We can rest in the fact that God is good and He knows the future.
EVEN IF (MercyMe)
What it says: “I know You’re able and I know You can save through the fire with Your mighty hand, but even if You don’t, my hope is You alone.”
Why it matters: Our future and our hope is eternal life with God.
I HAVE THIS HOPE (Tenth Avenue North)
What it says: “I don’t want to live in fear, I want to trust that You are near- Trust that Your grace can be seen in both triumph and tragedy. I have this hope in the depth of my soul.”
Why it matters: Regardless of your situation, as a Christian, there is hope!
MORE THAN ANYTHING (Natalie Grant)
What it says: “I know if You wanted to, You could wave Your hand- Spare me this heartache and change Your plan. And I know when He said that You could take my pain away, but even if You don’t, I pray: Help me want the Healer more than the healing.”
Why it matters: Knowing Jesus is more important than healing.
JOY (For King and Country)
What it says: “Oh hear my prayer tonight, I’m singing to the sky. Give me strength to raise my voice, let me testify. Oh hear my prayer tonight, ‘cause this is do or die. The time has come to make a choice, and I choose joy.”
Why it matters: We have two choices: Self-pity or joy. Count it all joy.
WE WON’T BE SHAKEN (Building 429)
What it says: “You’ve held me in my weakness ‘cause You are always there. So I’ll stand in full surrender; it’s Your way and not my own. My mind is set on nothing less than You and You alone. I will not be moved.”
Why it matters: When we are fixed on Christ, we cannot be shaken no matter what comes our way.
NEVER LET YOU DOWN (Hawk Nelson)
What it says: “All of this time and I’ve never let you down. I carried you then, I’ll carry You here and now. So don’t lose heart and don’t forget, my work in you ain’t finished yet. Hold on to me now, I’ll never let you down.”
Why it matters: God has been there for me in the past and will be here for me now.
JUST BE HELD (Casting Crowns)
What it says: “If your eyes are on the storm, You’ll wonder if I love you still. But if your eyes are on the cross, You’ll know I always have and I always will. And not a tear is wasted, in time you’ll understand. I’m painting beauty with the ashes; your life is in My hands. So when you’re on your knees and answers seem so far away, you’re not alone- stop holding on and just be held.”
Why it matters: In times of trouble, we have to focus on Christ and what He’s done for us rather than focus on our problem.