Christian musician Tim Timmons has been living with an incurable form of cancer for 14 years but says he wants fans to know that despite his ongoing battle, he has found an unshakable joy.
The singer-songwriter who released his debut album Cast My Cares in 2013 and sophomore album Awake Our Souls in October was first told he would die from cancer five years ago, but has defied the odds.
Since his freshman album the worship leader has been writing songs based on his personal experiences and shares them with audiences on a national platform. The California native says his music is a reflection of God's glory as he finds purpose in living each day to its fullest.
Along with leading worship and touring for Awake Our Souls, Timmons has partnered with K-LOVE TV for a new series, "Timmons Pantry Raid," which showcases his other passion: cooking.
The following is an edited transcript of Timmons' interview with The Christian Post in which he discusses his 14-year battle with cancer, his latest album and new cooking show, as well as his journey to true joy.
CP: How has your battle with cancer changed your life?
Timmons: Well, I often say my diagnosis with an incurable cancer is not my story, but it's the perspective through my journey with cancer that is the story. I wrote a blog called "The Gift of Cancer," which sounds like a ridiculous thing to say, but told how Jesus works through sorrow to bring us to surrender; surrendering as if He is God and I am not.
Don't get me wrong, cancer is stupid, but Jesus is greater! True joy, that is an actual fruit of God's Spirit, is untouchable by circumstance. Many of us walk around happy as big smiles, but joyless as hell. Jesus says it often how through suffering HIS joy is made complete in us.
Speaking of joy, this newest project of mine has been referred to by many as "joy-filled" and I love that description because it's true! These days I have more joy than I know what to do with. And no, it's not because I do 20 quiet times a day or because I'm super awesome, but because I am accessing the fullness that Jesus has for me. He is becoming my hope, not the remedy to what I am hoping for.
Jesus is becoming more [than] enough to me than He was last month, and I think that is coming out in my music and in my life of worship. What's stealing your joy? Which area do you need to stop playing king or queen over and surrender it to Jesus as if He is the King of the Kingdom and knows what's best for His Kingdom?
CP: Since the threat of having cancerous tumors in your body has motivated you seek God's Kingdom every day, what advice do you have for others who are seeking God?
Timmons: Well, I'll never say to pursue sorrow, because as my dad always says, 'just wait a week … it's coming!'
That's just it, our seeking first the Kingdom is a daily thing that is outside of our circumstance. The gift of sorrow is that it breaks you whether you want it or not. It breaks us of our reign as kings and queens until we surrender it all over to Jesus. When we are in the "good" times, use this as practice for the times that are coming! Look to see where in your life you can rehearse surrendering things over to Him all day long, saying, "This is not my Kingdom. Jesus lead on today." I write a little black X on my wrist everyday, reminding myself to seek Jesus as King and let Him do His job and I'll do mine: Just follow Him and look for Him all day long.
CP: What things did you propose yourself to do differently since getting diagnosed 14 years ago?
Timmons: I guess there is a different sense of urgency that I live with today. I wouldn't trade this journey for anything. I'm ready for Jesus to heal my body, but the way that He has opened my eyes through this diagnosis is amazing! Everyday I wake up saying, 'Thank you, Jesus for waking me up another day! What do you have me here for today? Open my eyes to see where You're at work!'