The Gospel According to My Baby Sister

1 John 4:10-11

It’s been three and a half months since my last update on my sister. Nearly every day someone writes to tell me they are still praying for her. So first of all let me say thanks so much for your prayers! Her brain cancer has progressed and this will most likely be the last update message I write before she dies, but please know that the last nine months have been a wonderful and peace-filled blessing.

If you would like to read the history you can read the following:

http://www.gdwm.org/display_devo.asp?Counter=mess3090

http://www.gdwm.org/display_devo.asp?Counter=mess3049

http://www.gdwm.org/display_devo.asp?Counter=mess3013

http://www.gdwm.org/display_devo.asp?Counter=mess2997

My sister and her family made the transition from Australia to the US the end of May and they were able to stay at our home in Texas for two weeks during the first part of June. This was an incredible time. During her visit she was able to walk, with help, eat lots of anything she wished, carry full conversations, and we even made several trips to the local heated swimming pool where she swam many laps with the help of a floatation belt.

After she left our home, she and her family began a long trip with the intent of visiting family and seeing some of the sights in the western US. She made it as far as Los Angeles, California before becoming too weak to travel. She spent some time in hospitals in Los Angeles and Seattle before being transferred to Omaha, Nebraska where her family planned to settle. Once in Omaha she was almost immediately moved to a hospice care facility and given just weeks to live.

I am now sitting beside my baby sister, watching her sleep, knowing I will soon never watch her sleep again.

It’s been an interesting process over the last months as the family has had to think about, and ponder, death; but more importantly, to think about life. Thinking about the end of life, especially at an early age, causes one to consider what it really means to live.

1 John 4:10-11

“This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.”

My sister knew that God loved her and sent Jesus to die for her sin. But what she also knew, better than most, was that the way to live out God’s love was to love others in very real and tangible ways. We sometimes can become too evangelical, where our definition of love becomes limited to a message of the forgiveness of sin and an eternal bliss. Of course, this message is important, but the gospel, or “good news,” is actually much more; and even better! The gospel message is about forgiveness, but it is also about love and hope right now. It’s about peace and contentment, about restored relationships, fulfillment and true joy. The Good News is about a future salvation, but it’s also about a salvation which begins today!

The gospel caused my sister to tell people about Jesus; but it also caused her to pour herself into the lives of everyone she met. She had a sense of purpose that understood her role in bringing about a true gospel change in another life through love. And for my sister, this love meant getting involved at a level which cost her time, energy, and money. I have spent many years studying and writing about the gospel, but the last several months have shown me I have a lot to learn in order to live out the gospel according to my baby sister.

Have a Christ Centered Day!

Steve Troxel

God’s Daily Word Ministries

2 responses to “The Gospel According to My Baby Sister”

  1. Anonymous

    >Dear Steve,

    I am compelled to write to you after reading about your sister. She reminds me so much of my aunt. She died of lung cancer in May this year and it was a great blessing to me to see God take His faithful servant to rest. She too was a woman who lived the message of love. Her going to be with the Lord was peaceful and without pain or medical intervention. I sat with her daughter and watched as her breathing slowed and eventually stopped. I was not traumatised by her death and neither was she. I pray that I will be worthy of such a peaceful departure from this world.

    May you and the rest of your family gain strength in knowing your sister is going home. In death, our faith is truly tested. For it is when we see our loved ones depart, that we affirm our belief in the resurrection and eternal life.

    God be with you during this time.

    Carole.

  2. James Cruse

    >Steve, I have been encouraged and blessed by you and your daily, let the people continue to bless and encourage you,My sister went to glory also and it is tough, "But God" It is at this point you have to plant both feet on the ground, fall to your knees, face the floor and get the understanding of what God is really saying. And the truths that will be revealed in to your own translation and answers to questions that mean the most to you. That has been extremely true for me as I seek to understand God’s promises of protection. My condolences to you and your family, you have been such an inspiration over many years, Thanks be to God and may His face and favor forever shine upon you. James Cruse

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