“ I CAN DO NOTHING ”
THE BIRTH OF A SONG OF DELIVERANCE
I would like to begin by saying that everything in this testimony is meant to give all glory to God.
My hope is that this testimony will explain how my song, “I Can Do Nothing”, came to be written and for me to share how God brought about a spiritual deliverance in my life, as well as healing, for my son who was diagnosed with cancer.
In the past I have given brief details of how this song came to be, but now I feel like I need to give a more detailed account of what was going on in my life, and how God used the circumstances to bring a song of deliverance for me and I hope for anyone who hears it and shares this testimony.
God used a very trying time in my life to bring about a blessing in song. I hope that it helps you understand that God can work in our lives and bring deliverance when it seems that nothing can help us get through.
I believe that life is a very precious gift. I am a firm believer that God made us for a purpose and we have an obligation to find and fulfill that purpose in our lives. Sometimes we don’t realize just how short life can be and just how often we take for granted the time that God has given us with our loved ones. I remember a verse that my Mother used to repeat quite often, “Only one life, twill soon be past. Only what’s done for Christ will last.” There is a great deal of wisdom in those few words that we need to take to heart. Always remember that you and your loved ones are special, because everything that God makes is worth something.
I first need to share snap-shot of my life to help you understand my beliefs and how they affected my thinking and response to what happened during this very trying time in my life. I was raised in a Christian home from the time I was three years old. My parents worked in the ministry for God. My Dad and Mother worked as Evangelists traveling for the Lord and later as Pastors shepherding the children of God. I was taught early in life to believe and trust in God for “ALL” things and if you had faith in Him He could do anything that you asked. I was taught that God was a Healer and that He worked miracles for His children. In short what I was taught and still believe to this day is that God can do anything that He said in His Word. There is nothing impossible for Him. But all of this knowledge of the working of an all powerful God, and His supernatural works could not stop the enemy from attacking my faith or keep the affliction, pain and sorrow from entering into my life. Being a Christian does not make you immune to problems but it does help us to know that God can deliver and take us through to victory.
Let me assure you that I was not prepared for that evening in 2002 when my son, my only child, came to my home with his wife to inform his Mother and me that the doctor had found a massive growth in his chest around his heart and up into his neck. They were pretty sure that it was cancer, but would need to do more testing and perform a biopsy to make sure. To say the least I was floored. I felt as though someone had come up behind me and hit me with a 4×4. Questions began to pour into my mind. How? Why? Where did this thing come from? This can’t be they have to be wrong!!! This is my son; He was born on a Friday and was in Church on Sunday morning. For the first 15 years of his life he never missed a Sunday in Sunday School. He was a great son, I am not saying he was perfect but he never smoked, he never drank or took drugs. Why him and why now. He has already been through so much in his short 33 years.
Just 4 years earlier in July of 1998 his first wife was killed in a single car crash while on her way home from work. I will never forget going to meet him as he came in off the road, having to look him in the eyes and tell him that his wife had been killed. I saw the blood drain from his face and could only imagine what was going through his mind as I told him his wife and the mother of his two beautiful children was gone. No father should have to go to his son and give him this kind of heartbreaking news.
Through this whole ordeal I watched as my son struggled with his grief and stayed strong for his children who were just 6 and 7 years old at the time. His Mother and I watched and tried to help as much as we could over the next couple of years as he did everything humanly possible to raise his children. He was a great Father, a far better Father than I ever was. That kind of grief and hurt should be enough for a lifetime for anyone. And now he is sitting at my dining room table telling me that he may have cancer. Something is wrong here, this just isn’t right. It was then that I stopped and took a good look into the face of my son; I saw calmness and a peace that was unbelievable. I am upset and angry. I am downright mad. How can he sit here so calmly and tell me that he may have cancer and that he may be dying. At that moment I was amazed how he handled this attack of the enemy on his life. This is just more proof that we serve a loving God who will be with us no matter what we face.
The next year turned out to be a very trying year. First the biopsy which confirmed that it was cancer. They could not operate to try to remove the growth because it was too close to his heart and around other organs in his neck. The doctor was afraid that surgery could do more damage than good. The biopsy was followed by treatments of massive doses of chemotherapy followed by several radiation treatments.
I can’t begin to tell you my son’s story of what was going on in his heart and in his mind throughout this ordeal. I can only tell you how this all affected me, how helpless I felt and how much the devil fought me in this situation. It was as if the devil himself was speaking to me, “You’re the preacher who preached healing and deliverance, you’re the preacher who tells everyone to believe and trust God and you can’t even do anything to help your own son.” I felt like a failure, I felt like it was my fault. I felt that in some way I had failed my son and his family. For several years prior to this I had allowed myself to drift away from God’s will in my life. I felt like this was what had caused my son to become sick. It was a feeling of I can’t do anything.
It was during this time, as I drifted from God, I began to struggle with the gift of music and songwriting that God had blessed me with. I just could not seem to come to grips with my own shortcomings and failures. I was unable to write anything and the music that I loved so much was just gone. I lost all desire to even try to write or play and sing. Looking back now it is real plain to see how I had let the circumstances in my life rule me instead of me taking charge and overcoming those circumstances.
I have always been the type of person that when I was confronted with a problem I fixed it. When something doesn’t work or is broke you just fix it. But this was something I could not fix. I struggled with doubt and unbelief. I knew that God was capable of performing a miracle and the cancer would disappear. I had been witness to God’s healing power. I knew what He could do if we only believed. But I was struggling with my own shortcomings. I was not walking in the will of God and this caused me to feel unworthy to even ask Him for anything.
There was some relief that came through the news that it seemed like the treatments had worked. The cancer seemed to have been stopped and the growth was shrinking, yet they would not call him cancer free. They based that determination on five years of negative tests before they would call him cancer free.
A little bit of hope begin to spring from this news. We thought that this was going to be it. Everything was over and all was well. Unfortunately the devil said not so fast. About a year later the tests did not show up well. The cancer was back. This time the recommendation was for a T-Cell transplant. First they began to harvest T-cells from him using a procedure much like Dialysis. They pulled his blood and separated the T-cells and froze and stored them to put back in later. This time he had to go into the Hospital and stay for about a month for massive, continuous doses of chemo that were stronger than the first time. This completely destroyed his immune system. He had to spend his time in the hospital in isolation When this was completed they immediately transplanted the T-Cells back into him with more drugs to stimulate the growth of these cells.
Once again the doubt and unbelief seemed to be winning. The fear of what might happen overshadowed what I knew God was capable of doing. I tried with all my might to battle those feelings but I just could not seem to overcome them.
Finally good news came that the transplant was working. His blood was building up. His immune system was growing stronger and the tests all began to show that the cancer had stopped growing. I am thankful for all the doctors were able to do. I am grateful for the knowledge that they had to work through this dreaded cancer. But I still know in my heart that God brought about this healing in my Son. This I know for sure that God is the Great Healer.
Through this nightmare I finally began to break through some of the walls that I had allowed the devil to build around my heart. In June of 2005 I was able to begin to write the words to this song “I Can Do Nothing”. I was able to put into words the feelings of being lost and not being able to fix the problem that I was facing. But even with this break through there was still one obstacle that I could not overcome. I could not find the music. There were words but I could not find the melody. As I have said in brief testimonies about this time I had lost my music and just could not seem to find it. I tried and tried and tried until I just gave up. I thought in my heart that at least the words could be a poem.
But I thank God that He was not through with me yet or my song. In October 2010 God began to move in the lives of my wife and I. Through His leading we began to fellowship at Higher Encounters Christian Ministries, with long time friends and former co-workers in the Lord, Lamon and Marcia Napper. At first we were just coming to services and enjoying the fellowship and feasting on the Word of God that was being ministered through preaching and singing. Through hearing God’s truth in teaching and praise my wife and I both began to gain strength from God. He began to fill the void that was in my soul from drifting so far from His truth. It wasn’t long before we began to sing and take more of an active part in the services. I thank God for the wisdom of my friend and pastor Lamon, he gave us time to allow God to minister to our spiritual needs before he asked us to take part in the work of the church.
It’s amazing how God moves to bring all the pieces of the puzzle together to make a beautiful picture. It was not long until we were asked to sing with the praise team. It was such a blessing to work with Eva, Dick, Marcia and Lamon. God began to bless us and fill our hearts with the love that we had been missing for so long.
It was not long after this that God began to deal with my heart and began to bring back the music that I thought I had lost. As the music began to flow and the inspiration came back into my heart and life, God also brought the melody to life for the song I had written back in 2005. “I Can Do Nothing”, was finally finished. God brought the music and the words together to make it a living testimony of what God can do when we trust and believe Him.
My deep desire is that God will use this song to minister to everyone who hears it in the same way that it has ministered to me. When we reach a point in our lives that we feel like we can’t go on and there is nothing that we can do that makes any sense or has any reason, let us remember that we can pray, wait on the Lord, trust in the promises that He has given us and then stand and depend on His Word. My prayer is that God will richly bless each and everyone who reads this testimony and listens to my song. Thank you and God bless you.
Michael L. Bennett Sr.