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Sinking Into the Depths of Despair Until...

Shannon Woodland - 700 Club Producer
Danielle Thompson - 700 Club Producer

Gregory couldn’t believe the news: “To hear that I have cancer?   When he told me ‘cancer,’ I was devastated.  Because I'd never had anything in my life.”  

At 68 years old, Gregory couldn’t remember ever being sick.  But now, doctors were telling him and his wife, Athena, they’d found a large tumor on his left kidney.  They were certain it was cancerous.

Athena says, “It was devastating.  It was very, very hard, extremely hard.”

Doctors believed the best course of action was to remove the tumor along with his kidney, and scheduled surgery.

Gregory says, “I began praying, believing God will take away the cancer.  Believing that the day when I go for the surgery, God will take away the-the tumor and I will be okay.  I was praying about a healing.”

But prior to surgery, a CT scan showed more bad news.  His lungs were covered with nodules - an indication the cancer had spread.

Gregory says, “My heart was broken.  I was in such a condition, and it's indescribable how I felt.  I heard the Lord in crystal clear voice from the right side and told me ‘I know about it.’  Instantly, peace came upon me.  And by the grace of God, I forgot about this horrible feeling of-of being done, being devastated.  Peace came, overwhelmed me.”  

Doctors decided to go ahead with the scheduled surgery.  A few weeks later, he was referred to oncologist Dr. Ted Logan about his lungs.  

Dr. Logan explains, “Basically we saw pulmonary nodules that were increasing in both size and number, and that’s worrisome, very worrisome.  I thought that that probably indicated that this was metastatic renal cancer.”

Dr. Logan explained the treatment options, including chemo.  But those would only buy him time – none could provide a cure.

Dr. Logan says, “There’s a huge range how people do with metastatic kidney cancer.  Some people are dead in a few months, and other people are alive years.  So if you average it all together it comes out around 10-12 months.”  

Gregory remembers the drive home: “I was brought so low, as low as the dirt.  I mean, I was devastated again.  And I couldn't stop tears coming, water coming from my eyes.  But then, I heard the Lord tell me, ‘Cast it out’ – to cast out the spirit of grief and hopelessness.  So as I was driving, I turned my head and I said, ‘In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, I'm casting you out of me!’  And instantly this peace came upon me and the water stopped.”

Once home, he shared the news with Athena.  She says, “Fear came upon me, it did.  And so when we were talking about it, he goes, ‘I'm going to be okay, Athena, I'm going to be okay.  Don't worry about it.’  That-that’s how he encouraged me.”  After considering the options, and horrible side effects, they decided to forego treatment, well aware of the consequences.

Dr. Logan says, “I have to say, untreated, most people are not going to do very well.”

Gregory and Athena believed differently, as they turned to prayer and God’s Word for healing.

Gregory explains, “I assembled 70 verses talking about hope, life, deliverance and peace.  Every chance I had, I spoke the Word of God.  John 15:7 – ‘If you abide in Me and My words abide in you, anything you shall ask will done unto you."  And John 14 – ‘Anything you ask in my name I will do it that the Father be glorified.  Anything you ask, I will do it."

Athena adds, “I belong to a prayer group.  So there was so much encouragement just belonging in that group. I had a lot of prayer warriors all over the place.”

Gregory continues, “A miracle began to happen.  Inside, this faith that I already had begun to rise to the point where I was expecting a healing.  I was expecting to be healed, to hear good news.”

Then, two months later he went back for blood tests and another CT scan.  Dr. Logan had news:  “It was a surprising finding.  But it’s not something I haven’t seen before, it’s just very rare.  The nodules in the lungs, those shrunk.”

In fact, Gregory was told they were too small to be measured!  He remembers, “I jumped up and I said, loud – I yelled loud, I yelled so loud I don't know if people heard me there, all the doctor's office, ‘Lord, thank you!  I know You healed me!’”

Medically, the phenomenon is called a “spontaneous regression.”  For Athena and Gregory, it was the answer to their prayers.  Gregory says, “All those years that I knew what the Word of God was about became real.  The healing, and how God responds, became real.  And how important it is for people to believe in the Lord with all your heart.”

That was 2016, and at each of his 6-month checkups, there has been no sign of cancer.  Gregory and Athena attribute the healing to the power of Jesus Christ.

Athena shares, “There's hope with the Lord Jesus.  There is always hope.  Pray to him.  Don't stop. Even though something might not have happened today, it doesn't mean that it won't down the road.”  

Gregory adds, “When He doesn't answer, that means that we need to learn to wait on Him.  Every time, when you believe in Jesus and we pray, the Lord hears.” 

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