April 24, 2021: 3. Circular Letter to Family and Friends

„When they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only.”

Dear family, friends and brothers and sisters,

It is Saturday morning and in a few hours I will be back home. An unbelievably intensive time lies behind me – I can hardly believe that it is only 9 days from the day of admission (Thursday, April 15) to the hospital until today. I would not like to miss this time, for many reasons:

  • Even in the first deep insecurity, fear and uncertainty after the first findings on Wed. evening, April 14, my wife and I never had the feeling of abandonment, doubt or rebellion. This must be due solely to our loving Lord who said to Peter, ” But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail.” (Luk 22:32).
  • After the doctors had come to the final diagnosis on Friday evening and discussed the course of therapy with us, Dietlind said to me on Saturday morning that she had felt it altogether like a “liberation”, namely to know now what it is and what is in store for us in the near future.
  • And in parallel, an unbelievable wave of love and support, of prayer initiative and supplication started around us – probably we do not know at all the extent with which God’s throne of grace is being stormed for us. Many greetings, messages, encouragements, psalm words, phone calls and even flower greetings reached me and my wife, so we are quite overwhelmed.
  • It was important to me from the beginning to try to tell about my situation openly and honestly; for me it was especially crucial in the first time that I knew: I can call our friends, tell them, cry with them on the telephone and be encouraged and comforted by them.

I wonder what God’s plan is in all of this? We don’t know – we have just learned that our many plans have been lovingly set aside by HIM. We want to, we are allowed to accept each day from His hand as a gift and live it for His glory. I wrote above that I would not miss this time. The main reason is actually this: I had here in the sick room, in the early morning hours, or sitting alone on the terrace in the sun, so intense fellowship with the Lord Jesus and joy in my loving Father, as I think I never had in my life. And if HE has chosen this way with me, to draw me to His heart like this, then I don’t want to go any other way. Oh, I wish – and pray – that the Lord can wake us all up when we have fallen into spiritual sleep, or when our (well-meaning and Christian) activities no longer “allow” us to simply BE WITH HIM, preferably in the best time of the day.

My prayer requests for the next time are:

  • A good arrival at home, and that I continue to manage my back without pain after discontinuing the painkillers. And that the further treatments go well.
  • That I continue to cope well with the chemotherapy and that there are no side effects.
  • That Dietlind gets daily strength, courage of faith and joy of life to continue to stand by my side in such a loving and faithful way.
  • That God gives me the physical strength; the therapy is very strenuous for the body. I need to rest and sleep intensively every now and then. That I learn to pay attention to the “signals” of the body and not to take on too much.
  • That it becomes clearer which tasks I can continue to do at the moment, what has priority and the strength allows. This refers to the projects I was working on before; at the same time I want to be open to new tasks that the Lord may give me now in this phase.

I thank you all for all your prayers, your love and your support!

Be at the mercy of the Lord!