March 20, 2023
I Was a Match
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“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.” 2 Corinthians 4:7 (NIV)
Over a decade ago, my friend organized a bone-marrow registry drive to help save the life of her friend’s son.
This sweet little boy had been diagnosed with cancer and was in need of a bone-marrow transplant. His parents desperately needed to find a bone-marrow “match.”
As soon as my friend was informed that the chances of finding a match might be higher if the donor was from the same ethnic community, she made some calls and quickly put together the drive. At this event, participants would donate blood, which would be analyzed and matched to recipients in need of a bone-marrow transplant. Our community came out by the hundreds in full support.
Months later, I received a letter.
Though I wasn’t a match for my friend's little boy, I was a possible match for a 14-year-old boy living in another state. “Would you be willing to move forward with this match?” the letter asked.
“Moving forward” meant more bloodwork, and if I was an exact match, it meant surgery — not just for the teenage boy but for me too. It also meant a possible six-week recovery from that surgery … and of course there were risks involved.
At the time all of this transpired, my young children were preschool-aged. What if I had complications from the surgery? What if the risks became a reality?
I was all-in when it was a community event. Now that things were getting personal, I wasn’t sure I was ready.
But after some prayer and wise counsel, my husband and I decided it was important that I move forward. So I gave my “yes” to the blood center, and God gave me peace. If this was successful, the benefits for this young boy would far outweigh my own little risks! It was a chance I was willing to take.
Second Corinthians 4:7 tells us, “But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.”
Friends, as imperfect and inadequate as we might feel at times, if we have Christ in us, we have a treasure inside of us — a treasure this world desperately needs! We are a spiritual “match” to countless lost and dying souls around us.
Are there risks involved in sharing the hope of Jesus with others? Absolutely!
Is sharing the gospel easy? Not always.
Can it be uncomfortable? Yes, for sure!
Effective ministry might involve transparency, getting personal and putting ourselves out there. But if we truly believe what we say we believe, how can we not share it?
A few months after moving forward with my bone-marrow matchup, I received another letter. The young man’s physician and family decided to go with a different treatment plan. All we could do then was pray for the young man and his family.
Saying “yes” and doing our part to help save a life (physically or spiritually) isn’t glamorous. It involves risks, inconvenience and being uncomfortable at times! On this side of eternity, we may not even see the fruit of everything we do.
Nonetheless, Scripture encourages us to say “yes” to whatever Jesus is asking each of us to do. We are a match to someone out there! We have what they need — the hope of the gospel.
It’s a chance I pray we are all willing to take. The benefits are always worth the risks!
Heavenly Father, thank You for those who have ministered to me and for the relationship I have with You because of their faithfulness. Give me eyes to see You and ears to hear Your voice so that I can now minister to those You have called me to minister to. Help me be faithful to Your call on my life. Please strengthen me so that I may serve You wholeheartedly. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
OUR FAVORITE THINGS
Have you ever looked at a situation you’re facing and thought, How will I ever get over this? Lysa TerKeurst understands. After years of heartbreak and emotional trauma, she's realized it’s not about just getting over hard circumstances but learning how to work through what she has walked through. Now, she wants to help you do the same. That’s why Lysa teamed up with her personal Licensed Professional Counselor, Jim Cress, alongside the Director of Theological Research at Proverbs 31 Ministries, Dr. Joel Muddamalle, to bring you Therapy & Theology. While Lysa, Jim and Joel do tackle some really hard topics, you’ll soon find they're just three friends having a great conversation and learning from each other along the way. Click here to listen now!
Read more like this on Binu Samuel’s blog, Whispers and Fringes, or connect with her through Facebook and Instagram.
FOR DEEPER STUDY
Matthew 9:37-38, “Then he said to his disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest.’” (ESV)
Have you ever felt compelled to minister to someone and later found out that your words or acts of service were exactly what they needed at that time? We’d love to hear about it in the comments!
© 2023 by Binu Samuel. All rights reserved.
Proverbs 31 Ministries
P.O. Box 3189
Matthews, NC 28106
Originally published Monday, 20 March 2023.