The Difficult Call to Promote Peace and Unity in the Church

The Gospel Coalition | 8/20/2018 | Staff
Sugar12 (Posted by) Level 4
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“Mr. Heffelfinger, I’m sorry but there’s no easy way to say this. You have cancer. Get to treatment yesterday.”

Those words, spoken in 2005 by an oral surgeon about a fast-growing, killer tumor on the right side of my tongue, set in motion a furious campaign to save my life. Before hearing the “all clear,” I endured the big three: surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy. Gratefully, God preserved my life and kept me preaching, albeit without 30 percent of my tongue.

Survivor - Word - Life - Tutor - Cancer

Any survivor will tell you—the “c” word changes your life forever. Quite the tutor, cancer. I’d never voluntarily sign up for it again, but I wouldn’t trade its lessons for anything. Among them? What a difference it makes when a doctor employs just the right bedside manner. My oncologist modeled an approach with his patients that made me want to come out a better pastor on the other side of treatment.

Dr. G had no problem shooting straight with me when I needed it. More than once he said, “We sent you to **** and back to save your life.” But never once did he demonstrate anything less than the kindest, most compassionate, and gentlest of demeanors. Most of us have heard horror stories about doctors schooled in the Marquis de Sade curriculum of bedside manner. Not my Dr. G.

Body - Christ - Thing - Someone - Oncologist

Many of us in the body of Christ could learn a thing or two from someone like my oncologist. Our failures in this regard indict us saved-by-grace types. Philip Yancey rightly challenged our shortcomings with questions like: “If grace is so amazing, why don’t Christians show more of it? How is it that Christians called to dispense the aroma of grace instead emit the noxious fumes of ungrace?”

If we want to make more than a passing grade as peacemakers, we must confront this dilemma...
(Excerpt) Read more at: The Gospel Coalition
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