I know a lot of you have been following Nabeel’s fight with stomach cancer like I have. I know a lot of us are also holding him up daily in prayer. Nabeel posts videos on YouTube as he goes through his fight and I have been updating the links on a post page I started a number of months ago. The link to that post is directly below:
It’s pretty hard to keep your eyes dry as you share Nabeel’s emotions and concerns and prayers. Because of Nabeel’s turn from Islam to Christianity, a number of Muslims are letting Nabeel know that he has cancer because he left Islam and to return to their faith. If you know Nabeel at all, you know that’s never going to happen but I can’t help sharing in Nabeel’s hope that God will heal him so that God is glorified and the healing is a witness to those of the Islamic faith that are looking, and even to those who are not.
Nabeel met with the RZIM ( Ravi Zacharias) team recently and it was also very emotional. You can read about it and see pictures that were taken here: torn-emotions-a-visit-with-nabeel-qureshi/
A direct quote from the RZIM post reads as follows: “Our meeting was not without scriptural precedent. It brought to mind the farewell address to the Ephesian elders from Paul, one of the greatest evangelist/apologists the world has ever known, and I shared that scripture with the team. Acts 20:36-38 tells us that after Paul finished speaking to the elders, “he knelt down with all of them and prayed. They all wept as they embraced him and kissed him. What grieved them most was his statement that they would never see his face again. Then they accompanied him to the ship.”
This is when Paul let the Ephesian Church know that he, Paul, would not be seeing them again here on earth. Hard realities.
I was praying about Nabeel yesterday and when I had completed my prayer, it occurred to me that obviously we are asking God to intervene and do a miracle. And of course God can, if that is part of His plan for Nabeel’s life. Strange how when we need something from God, especially when illness or life and death is involved, we ask for more time, even if it involves a miracle. Actually it’s not strange at all, time is precious because of our loved ones. A few years ago, when I had cancer, I shed many tears in prayer, but most of them were not for me, they were shed for those that I would leave behind. How precious love is. How precious relationships are. How precious our hope is.
Nabeel has hope and faith and trust and when you get right down to the basics, that’s all that any of us can have. This life we have been given on earth is real, but it ends, sooner or later, for all of us. Those that we love that are still alive will be left behind and when we die, we head into the unknown.
Jesus rose from the dead to prove to us that He had conquered death and restored our union with God our Father. He proved that life does not end at the grave, that there is more, much more. That is our hope. But in order to realize that hope, the new life that God promises in the hereafter, needs to start here, on earth, while we are yet still alive.
That’s the new birth, where our hearts and minds are transformed and God’s Holy Spirit dwells within us. The transformation is progressive, sometimes painfully slow but the more earnestly we draw closer to God (Father, Son and Holy Spirit), the more He makes us aware of His presence, His guidance and most importantly, His love. Jesus is God the Father’s greatest expression of love. John 3:16 NIV “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
I will continue to pray for Nabeel’s healing until he draws his last breath (if I am still here or until Nabeel is healed), just like Nabeel will, but we have our miracle, that God would love us in spite of our rejection of Him, so much so that He would send His only Son Jesus Christ, to open the way to restoration to communion with Him, by His willing sacrifice of His life on the cross, and His resurrection, so that we who believe in Him and the price He paid on our behalf, might also share in the eternal life that He promises to give us when we leave this earthly life.
Wishful thinking? Not so! Nabeel and I and countless others have tasted God’s love and presence and acceptance here, many many times, in many many ways. The new life starts here, now, while we are alive on earth.
We’re always looking for another miracle, another proof, another validation. And when our own life is on the line, that is understandable. But … the greatest miracle of all has already been given to us, if we accept it and receive it. Nabeel rests in that belief and so do I.
Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!