10 Nov

Thanksgiving Greetings from Doyle

The church sent out a letter today (November 10) from Lead Pastor Doyle Sager. He shares a Thanksgiving greeting, along with continued prayer requests for both he and Janet as he receives treatment for lung cancer.

You can keep up with his treatment news at his CaringBridge page, which are also included on the church Facebook page.

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A Thanksgiving Letter

With the Apostle Paul, I say, “Every time you cross my mind, I break out in exclamations of thanks to God” (Philippians 1:3, The Message). During this Thanksgiving season, I am truly thankful for you. I’m thankful for your ministry to me and my family in our time of need. I’m also grateful for your commitment to our church. In the midst of amazing challenges and hardships, you are staying focused on our mission, “To WELCOME warmly, GROW faithfully and SERVE generously; leading people into LIFE-GIVING relationships with Christ and each other.”

Granted, when COVID and cancer intrude on our lives, it is so much easier to be despondent and negative (such as, “How could a good God allow chemo drugs to take away my taste for coffee?!?!”). Scientists tell us that the human brain is wired to focus more on the negative than on the positive—a survival instinct, we assume. As an example, did you ever wonder why we call it a stop light and not a go light? You guessed it: negative focus.

A man attending a support group for cancer patients once stood up, introduced himself and said, “I don’t have cancer; a few million cells in my body have cancer, but I have millions more cells that are healthy.” What a great attitude. Keeping perspective is much easier when we practice the discipline of thanksgiving. As Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote, “Tho’ much is taken, much abides… “

Honestly, as I deal with my cancer, I don’t always live up to the poet’s words, but Janet and I try to spend some time each day counting our blessings. And speaking of daily blessings, your expressions of support, love and prayers mean so much. They truly minister to my spirit.

As you pray for me, here are some specifics:

  • Pray that the chemo treatments will be effective and side effects manageable
  • Pray for Janet as she cares for me
  • Pray for my attitude to remain positive, especially during times of discouragement and fear
  • Pray that I won’t waste any of this but allow God to use these trials to grow me into Christlikeness (James 1:2-4).

Please remember how much I love you and miss you. May you have a blessed Thanksgiving season.

Grace, Doyle

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