Friday, February 16, 2007

Lessons from the Teacher

On Tuesdays at our house, Pan Surman (Mr. Sherman) arrives at 2:30 to give Caleb a saxophone lesson. The Lord brought him into our lives two years ago and we haven't stopped being blessed by this godly man.

This Tuesday was February 13th, the year anniversary for Pan Surman to have had surgery to remove his entire stomach due to cancer. When we heard last year that he had a ten pound tumor in his stomach and that the only way to even hope for recovery was to remove the tumor and his stomach completely, we weren't very hopeful. But we prayed and asked God to spare his life, and He did. But it wasn't until yesterday that I heard more of the story!

On the day of his surgery a year ago, he said he entered the hospital just as if he were going to the store or to walk his dog. He said he had no fear and knew that God was present with him no matter what happened. He went into the operating room, having told the doctor that God was with him and that he was resting in His will for this surgery.

Pan Surman said the doctor didn't know what to do with that! But said he'd do the best job he could for him.

They successfully removed the tumor and his stomach, but told him afterwards that short of a miracle, he would be getting radiation and chemotheraphy to rid him of the cancer.

At this point in the story, Pan Surman said to me, "Do you know what my favorite verse in the Bible is?" He then asked for a Czech Bible and took me to Mark 9:23

"...Everything is possible for him who believes"!

He then told me about the morning after his surgery. He was laying on his hospital bed before the sun had come up, awake but unable to move due to all the tubes connected to him. All of sudden he said he saw something on the wall - it was as if the wall parted like a curtain and out stepped Jesus!

"I've never seen Jesus before, but I know Jesus and I knew this was Him", he said with a twinkle in his eye.

He said Jesus was about average height and looked unremarkable except for his eyes and how they looked at him...he said they were full of love. And then Jesus spoke.

"Ed, I have already healed you of the cancer. It's completely gone. But I did this because I've still got work for you to do on this earth. Tell them what I've done for you, and wait for me to show you the work I have for you."

And then Jesus was gone. But Pan Surman said he believed from that moment that he had been healed, and never forgot what Jesus told him. And that every morning since then he has woken up remembering how Jesus came to him, and what a comfort that was.

Well, when they did the testing in the following days, you can guess what they found...or didn't find! There wasn't a trace of the cancer and he never had to have the radiation or chemo. He had just been to visit the doctor the day before being at our house having this conversation, and the doctor had said, "That sure was unusual what happened...and you're STILL cancer free...can't figure that out."

Pan Surman replied, "Oh that's easy! Jesus came and told me I'd been healed...and I believed Him!"

He said he's still trying to discern what it is that God has for him on this earth. But I think he's already living out part of that work by giving glory to God and testimony of what belief can do if God wills it! I can't help but think how pleased Jesus must be with Pan Surman and his belief.

The last thing he said to me was, "I told the doctor yesterday that God doesn't do things halfway - he does them completely - like how he healed me!" Praise God for his faith and testimony!

I wonder what his doctor is thinking about these days!

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