Matt Chandler is the lead pastor of the Village Church in Dallas, Texas. If you have kept up with this blog at all, I am sure that you have noticed numerous occasions of me quoting something he has said or linking an audio clip, etc. I think that God has annointed him in an incredible way with an uncanny ability to translate the Gospel and teach it unabashedly. He is so humble, yet so blunt with the Truth and the Lord has used his teaching to speak into my heart a lot over the last year.
On Thanksgiving day this past week, November 26, Matt had a seizure and was taken to the hospital. There, doctors discovered a mass on the frontal lobe of his brain that will more than likely mean brain surgery. The elders of his church wrote a note on Sunday for their congregation that fills in a few of the details:
We want to provide you some guidance during this trial, a few details about Matt and a timeline in which all of us can actively participate over the next few days as we wait anxiously on the Lord regarding Matt’s health.
We rest in the knowledge that Matt is in the sovereign hand of our heavenly Father who loves him immensely more than we can comprehend. First Peter 1:3-7 says that times like this are given to us and are useful for our testing and refining. Take time to read those verses today.
Be encouraged that Matt is responding as you would hope and expect. His spirit is steadfast and secure, and his words reflect faith, love, joy and contentment even in a state of uncertainty.
Many of you are eager to help and ensure that he and his family are loved and cared for well. Right now the doctor’s order is for him to rest. Additional tests and doctor visits are to come, and we will provide regular updates as they are appropriate. Matt and Lauren know you are ready and willing to meet any practical needs, and their love for you will make it extremely difficult for them not to embrace those who knock on the door or call. Right now, though, the best gift is the physical space to afford them time to rest.
On Monday afternoon, Matt is meeting and praying with the church staff. Monday night, the elders are meeting with Matt and Lauren to pray with them. Matt’s appointment with the neurosurgeon is on Tuesday. During all of these times, join us in prayer wherever you might be. Wednesday at 7 p.m. at the Highland Village, Denton and Dallas worship centers, we will gather as a church body to pray. We encourage you to fast throughout that day and join us to pray that evening.
Certainly pray for Matt’s healing, and pray that he and his family would experience great peace during this time. But don’t stop there. Ask God to reveal what work he plans to do in you, in Matt and in our church through this trial. Although it may be easy to see the hand of the enemy in a situation like this, remember that God is sovereign that he may ordain trials to deepen our faith, draw us closer to him or to accomplish some other purpose. Therefore do not fear.
One thing to consider would be to send Matt a written note. His words and actions faithfully point to how lives are changed through the gospel of Christ so it always encourages him to hear what God is doing in you. The time and effort to reflect and write out your thoughts on God’s goodness in your life could warm your soul and allow Matt to hear, see and celebrate the work and blessings of Jesus. Bring your notes with you on Wednesday night. If you cannot be there, mail them to 2101 FM 407, Flower Mound, TX 75028.
You will keep in perfect peace
him whose mind is steadfast,
because he trusts in you.
We love you and are praying that during this unsettling time your steadfast trust in the Lord will reflect an uncommon peace and be a light among those whom the Lord puts in your path.
Please be in prayer for Matt and his family. Pray that God would bring healing to his body and peace to his family, but more than anything pray that God would make known His will for this situation and that the hearts of everyone involved would trust in that regardless of what His decision turns out to be.