MYRNA BROWN, HOST: Today is Friday, November 13th. Good morning! This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Myrna Brown.
NICK EICHER, HOST: And I’m Nick Eicher. Coming next: Talking to your children about the hard things in life.
2020 has certainly given many of us opportunities to do just that. But Myrna you talked to a father of four who’s had a particularly unusual season.
BROWN: Nick, he’s a Christian artist who’s spent nearly half his life in the middle of those difficult discussions. And through it all, he’s discovered a new perspective on sorrow.
YOUTUBE TIMMONS FAMILY SESSION: Hey everyone, welcome to the Timmons house. (Hi!) And we would love to give you this prayer that you can do as a family…
MYRNA BROWN, REPORTER: On April 16th, singer-songwriter, Tim Timmons transformed his Franklin, Tennessee, living room into a stage. His four children joined him.
YOUTUBE TIMMONS FAMILY SESSION CAST YOUR CARES: I now cast my cares on you the almighty…
Thirteen-year-old Malia sat next to him, picking a ukulele and singing harmonies. To the left and drumming, 11-year-old Noah. And behind them, 9-year-old twins Aaron, on bass…
TIMMONS: Sometimes his arm will go up like he’s a rock star or something.
…and Anna on keys.
TIMMONS: Gosh, she’s so cute. I just said babe, you just hold this note down and just look awesome. She’s like, dad I’m nervous.
Their debut jam session scored 250,000 YouTube views. But Timmons says his prayer is that those watching will see more than his family’s talent and charm.
TIM TIMMONS: My hope would be that it is powerful to watch a family saying I’m going to cast my cares on you God because there’s so much crazy going on.
Timmons grew up in Orange County, California, the son of a pastor.
TIM TIMMONS: You know I had a pretty amazing, growing up. And then they got a divorce, my freshman year of high school. My first sorrow happened then and then sorrows have been coming every year since.
In the year 2000, at the age of 24…
TIMMONS: They gave me five years to live.
Doctors diagnosed Timmons with cancer.
TIMMONS: It’s an incurable cancer that I’ve been diagnosed with. I’ve had surgeries and many procedures. There’s still tumors on my liver, but they haven’t grown in I think like three years.
Thankful the disease is in remission, Timmons says he’s also grateful for the diagnosis. He calls it a gift.
TIMMONS: Which just sounds like the dumbest statement ever. But when I’m out of my fear and I’m sober minded, I can actually go, oh my gosh I’m a different man than I ever would have been without this. I would never have known Jesus like I’ve known Jesus. I would never have been able to love my family like I get to love them.
Timmons and his wife Hillary were newlyweds and childless when they got the cancer diagnosis. But over the next few years, God began to bless them with children…
TIMMONS: There’s a moment when I didn’t know how to tell them.And they were getting to the age where their little friends were praying for me at night. Like, pray for Mr. Tim. And that at some point was going to come out to them. And in some ways it was like, ok Jesus. And I just cried and cried and cried, just saying ok, they’re yours.
GREAT REWARD SONG: I trust in you for every heartbeat as long as I’m alive.
In 2013 Timmons wrote Great Reward, a song that helped him talk about his cancer journey to his then 6-year-old daughter Malia and 4-year-old son Noah.
TIMMONS: We were in bed and we asked Jesus to make it real clear, that He would make it happen. My kids started asking about my scar. I have a huge scar on my stomach. And they had never asked about that ever. Kind of gave them a little bit and they kept asking more and more questions and it turned out to be this beautiful moment.
YOUTUBE TIMMONS FAMILY SESSION CAST YOUR CARES: So I will cast my cares on you the almighty
Moments that have turned into years of trusting and casting EVERY care on Jesus.
TIMMONS: Even last week one of my twins said, daddy, how are your tumors doing? You know, just out of nowhere and you kind of go, oh buddy, have you been thinking about that? Nobody wants to invite calamity or sorrow or hard things in life. Yet, I’m welcoming it in a different way. And I think there’s something powerful there. And when you can cast your cares upon Him, because He cares for you and He’s at work in all things, it just makes it easier.
YOUTUBE TIMMONS FAMILY SESSION CAST YOUR CARES: Awesome… see you guys, see you soon. (Bye!) Good job you guys!