In His Completeness
This is a letter written many years ago by Norman Grubb to an old friend who had just learned he had terminal cancer. Although it may itself be "old," the message contained in this letter is always renewing and relevant. We have changed the name to "Jim. "
I only heard yesterday from one who is in your fellowship that you told your folks on August 3rd that you have cancer of the liver, and she added, "apart from a miracle, he has no hope…. But he’s trusting the Lord for a miracle." And she was saying how the Spirit is making her an intercessor for you.
We have had such years of precious fellowship in our wonderful depth reality- that we are not "just we" but actually Christ Himself in our human forms. So we are really Christ, and ourselves, by grace, just the lamp for His light. And what a total difference that makes in the sudden human shocks which temporarily pull us back toward the fears and reactions of a deceived independent self outlook. Now we move back again to who we really are: Christ as us.
Then we are able to say with Paul about the mere temporary human "clothing" of our bodies, "[My] earnest expectation and my hope [is] that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but with all boldness as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life or by death" (Phil. 1:20). What a glorious word!
So now, dear Jim, I know that He is being magnified in your dear self, (and in a way I might say with me at ninety-one), so that what happens to the body, whether by life or by death, is a, mere detail. And we actually daringly praise Him that you in this way, after years of faithful witness to our total Christ in us as well as for us, are now magnifying Him.
Folks are seeing Christ and not a physical Jim in your present humanly hopeless condition, even as you have been showing Him as total all these wonderful years of ministry. Really, we do not care what happens to us physically, so long as He is seen in us in His completeness.
It is indeed radical but wonderful when the "heat" is really on, just to know that I am not I, Jim or Norman, but I am Christ as me! And so what happens to my outer self is really what Peter called the "sufferings of Christ" in my form; and as he said, then "the spirit of glory and of God is on us."
So I am with you in spirit and love, Jim, and faith for the one fact that really matters to us: He magnified in my mortal human body. And then I also see and believe that when our physical condition is not what really occupies our concern (and in that sense, like Paul, we don’t care except that all see us as Christ in our condition), then so often that "quickening Spirit" does do a quickening work in our body. But that is of less importance than His being the Quickening Spirit in our inner selves and spirits, and all seeing Him.
So I know it is such with you, Jim, and I bless you in the privilege of this sudden sharpest of trials and "tests of our believing." For us it is the "faith in trial" of I Peter 1:7 which "though tried by fire is much more precious than gold that perisheth…unto praise, honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ."
So I am with you in love and faith for Him magnified in you, as in me when my turn comes, and maybe also that physical quickening.
Ever loving you,
More Articles from The Intercessor, Vol 15 No 2
- The Deep Things of God
- Editor’s Note
- Moments with Meryl
- In His Completeness
- Straight with God by 30
- Excerpt from The Intercession of Rees Howells
- Full Assurance of Faith
- The Age of Miracles Past?
- Questions & Answers
- Letter to a Friend
- A Look at a Book
- The Mailbox
- Zerubbabel Focus: Total Living Center
- Faith Action
- The Faith Process
- To Think About
- Bible Study: Philemon
- Living Water: British Easter Conference Spring 1999
- Tape Talk
- Area Fellowship News: History of the Irish Fellowship
- The Real Problem: Satan’s Lie
- Words to Live By…