Dave McDonald has been blogging his way through a battle with cancer – he’s apparently up to 80,000 words worth of reflecting on the fight, and his faith in Jesus as it goes on (hopefully for many years to come).
Dave has been faithfully serving Jesus in Canberra for many years. He’s a good, long term, family friend, a contemporary of my dad’s, and his blog is poignant, candid, and an incredible reminder of what this medium can be – it’s gospel centred and encouraging, it’s a must read for everybody, but of particular value for those who need to be reminded to pray for, and think of, those suffering from terminal or chronic illness, and thinking about how to care for, or experience, suffering when life goes in a different direction.
I’ve tried to write a post telling you to read his blog a couple of times – but words failed me. Which is, given the abundance of words stored in the archives of this blog, a surprise, for you and me both. The richness of Dave’s reflections, and the generosity of sharing them publicly, is something pretty special and encouraging.
“I’m keen to leave my children, and my children’s children, a legacy with my words. It’s kind of nice that each of them currently follow the blog and they’ll be able to read back over things once I’m gone. It’s pretty special that they’ll even be able to listen to my voice if they download talks. But it’s the content of what I say that’s important. My prayer is that I’ll leave a legacy that flows from my words and is supported by my life. I desire to point beyond myself to the one and only God who loves each one of them. I want to share the good news of Jesus, his life, his words, his death, and his resurrection, and show them why I believe it. I want to speak about the goodness of God in the face of suffering and evil, and show the true joy that comes from confidence and contentment in God.”
I hope that what I write on my blog, and elsewhere, gives people a pretty good picture of who I am, but ultimately I hope that it’ll achieve the purposes Dave articulates in that quote. I want people to know Jesus.
He ends with a powerful reminder that God has left us a living legacy in the personification of his word – Jesus, and the good news of the gospel.
“I know that even if I were to write books and archive my talks in the safest of places, there will come a time when my words are no longer remembered. That’s just the way things go. But there are also some words that will never be wasted, words that will always achieve their purpose, words that will endure and live forever. The Apostle Peter wrote to Christians in the first century…
23 For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable,through the living and enduring word of God. 24 For,
“All people are like grass,
and all their glory is like the flowers of the field;
the grass withers and the flowers fall,
25 but the word of the Lord endures forever.”
And this is the word that was preached to you.
(1Peter 1:23-25, my emphasis.)