God Meant It for Good

This past Sunday I (Coleman) preached what will probably be my last sermon at New Church Westville. I’d planned to use someone else’s sermon but ended up reworking one I wrote a few years ago for a different congregation. When I delivered it then, there were two people in that congregation battling cancer, and others mourning the loss of a young man. Now it’s closer to home, but I wanted to say the same things:

1.) I do not believe that God wills evil or suffering.
2.) I do not believe that God is indifferent to evil or suffering.
3.) I believe that God only allows evil and suffering for the sake of good that He can bring from it.

I wanted to say these things boldly now, when it matters. Anne and I both are at a place where in the past we’ve wrestled with God over the fact that good people suffer immeasurably, and our faith has withstood that; and as hard as the news is now, I don’t feel abandoned by God.

Continue reading “God Meant It for Good”


On the shock and the blessings


I have cancer.

Just writing those words…

It seems crazy. Silly. Fake and unreal. It doesn’t seem to matter how many times I’ve said them in the last ten days…

To nurses, and hospital technicians. To close friends. To my parents. To members of the church and school community here. To friends on the other side of the world. To my hairdresser. To strangers. To my children.

It feels like they belong to someone else.

But they belong to me now. I have cancer. Continue reading “On the shock and the blessings”


I’m at the hospital this morning, waiting for another test, and I’m reviewing the literally hundreds of responses we have received to our news in the last 24 hours. It’s overwhelming, in the best way. It is so good to have the support and love of so many people around the world, to see and feel our village rally around us.
As we face moving again, and going to a new (for me) place, I am encouraged by these reflections on friendship from my nearest and dearest friend: Continue reading “Friendship”