Separation Anxiety

Q. At age 33 my wife was diagnosed with stage 3 breast cancer one month after discovering we were having our first baby. What are typically exciting and fun times became a different experience; wife’s prognosis poor, double mastectomy at week 6, then chemo treatments every week throughout the pregnancy. Doctors were not sure if our baby would be born healthy or would even make it to term. Our son was born premature, but quite healthy- “a miracle baby”, doctors said. My wife is now cancer free for 7 years- a miracle as well doctors now say.

Since my son was born in the most trying of circumstances we obviously have a unique bond.

He will be 7 next month and my concern is the timing of the Lord taking him or me- either by rapture or by death. I think about the Lord taking me and leaving my son without a father and I pray quite often that won’t be the case. My son is extremely sensitive and loving and would be devastated and it pains me to think about that. It also saddens me to think if the Lord ever took him before me. I don’t think I could bare the pain either. So I pray that the Lord takes us together.

Please help me to come to terms with this. Perhaps I’m not seeing the situation clearly, or perhaps it’s not my place to ask such a thing of the Lord. After all, it’s his timing- not mine.

A. It’s natural to have a fear of losing someone who means so much. But Romans 8:28 promises us that God is working everything together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose. He loves you and your son even more than you love each other and already has the matter of your future in hand.

In your shoes I would focus more on thanking Him for the two miracles He’s already given you and less on your fear of what might happen next. He didn’t go to all that trouble to bring you, your wife and your son through your ordeal only to tear you apart from each other again. Phil 4:4-7 is a passage that helps me in times of uncertainty. Perhaps it can help you, too.

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

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