It’s good to be in a position where you can’t lose, where regardless of the outcome you come up a winner.
The only way that this can happen is in Christ Jesus. In no other situation in life can you come up with a “win-win situation,” other than in Christ Jesus. By that I mean you win in life and you win in death.
There was a church member of mine that exemplified this attitude and spirit in her life and in her death. Her name was Wanda Faye Jackson. I remember when she accepted Jesus Christ as her personal savior: she came and joined our church. She was not just a church member, but she was a personal friend as well. She immediately got involved in the spiritual things of the church and she began to grow and serve on several auxiliaries and she was faithful and did a wonderful job.
She was faithful at Sunday School, but her favorite was that which is the most important to any Christian, and that is Bible study. Wanda loved and faithfully attended Bible study. At one time we did a study on life after death: the intermediate period between death and the resurrection, what happens when we die, the two judgments and what will happen when the rapture takes place. Another time we studied the security of the believer’s salvation, the fact that once you are truly saved, you are always saved and the fact that a Christian who has truly been born again cannot lose their salvation.
She grasped on to that and it was this that gave her peace of mind. Wanda was a joyful Christian; she would just come in on Wednesday nights, testify and just cry with tears running down her face thanking God for her salvation. However, somewhere if I’m not mistaken about three years prior to her death, she told my wife and I that it had been discovered that she had cancer. It was basically all over her body and she didn’t even know it because she didn’t have any symptoms or any pain. I shared it with the Bible study students and we were all shocked as our hearts went out to her.
But let me tell ya’ll something about this lady. She came to church on Wednesday nights and she testified with joy, with a glow on her face and said joyfully, “I look at it like this; I’m in a ‘win-win’ situation. If the Lord calls me home I win because I’ll be with Him, and if He leaves me here I win — I’ll still be with my family. So either way I can’t lose!”
Being in Bible study and learning prepared her for that; what she learned in Bible study became a reality in her life. When she testified that night I was so blessed, we all were blessed because I had never seen anybody so optimistic about the prospect of dying. Knowing she had incurable cancer, knowing that the road would get rough, she never wavered in her faith. This woman wanted God to get the glory out of her sickness.
She would come to church sometimes, her body racking with pain, with all kinds of different medications, yet she would get up on the choir loft with the praise and worship team with tears running down her face, hands lifted up, singing and giving God the praise. One Sunday she began to testify during the Sunday school as sick as she was, how regardless to what happened, she knew that she was going to come out on top.
She tore the Sunday school up that morning. Tears flowed and the Holy Spirit fell in that place. After taking chemotherapy and radiation I knew that she was weak, but Wanda Jackson pressed her way to the house of God when so many in their health and strength would stay home. One night in Bible study when she came she was in so much pain, so much until she could hardly walk out the door. My wife and I had to help her to her car and I had to literally lift her leg up and put it in the car for her, and with her dying breath she was talking about God.
Jesus said “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that hears my word, and believes on Him that sent me, has everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life” (John 5:24).
If you don’t know Him today, trust Him as your personal savior and then regardless to what comes in life or death you too can say “I’m in a win-win situation.”
The Rev. George T. Ellis is pastor of Union Grove Baptist Church. Reach him at [email protected]