The Blog of Pastor Mike Wilkins

In The Long Run

"The long run" referred to in the title of this blog is, in the first place, the many years Mike Wilkins served as West London's solo pastor, and then its Senior Pastor, since he and his wife Deb moved to London (and this church) in 1984.

In these past few years (beginning November 2011,) Mike's various health challenges, particularly a serious and ongoing case of cancer, has added another layer to the "long run" metaphor, and lots to blog about. Mike is currently on an extended Sick Leave, but generally worships with the church family on Sunday mornings.

With the publication of a book he wrote in 2016 entitled "Glory in the Face" (now available electronically and in paperback from, and other online venders), Mike has just launched a new website, which will serve as a sort of scrapbook for readers of the book, with relevant background photos, for example, of That Last Final Solo Canoe Trip in May, 2011, as well as additional information about the book, and--coming soon--a new set of blog posts, mostly about the peace of God and the joy of the Lord and the face of Christ and the strength to face anything. You'll find the new website now at

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  • OK. I admit that I have always been a total wuss about the very idea of a colonoscopy. Perhaps I have in my past shown a measure of manliness about a tiny camera up my nose and into the depths of my skull, but at the other extreme, it’s all total wussiness from me. So I have always secretly resented the likes of Pope John Paul II and Ronald Reagan plainly speaking of the merits of every man over the age of fifty having a regular colonoscopy for the sake of early detection of rectal and colon cancer. And I have often secretly hoped that, when it came my time to die, one of my last thoughts would be, “At least, I never had to have a colonoscopy.”

    Perhaps you can see where this is going...

    Ten days ago I had my first colonoscopy [It was in itself no big deal. Really. Check. One less monster under my bed.] Following the no-big-deal procedure, I was told that there is a fairly-big-deal tumour down there in the part of me where colonoscopies see things. Really.

    It was eighteen months ago I was told that a fairly large tumour was growing in my head and would need to be surgically removed. And now here I am, once again, a man with an upcoming surgery. Only this time, the tumour and the surgery are at the other end of me. (Tails instead of heads.) And this time, in terms of life as we know it, it might BE the end of me.

    Last time (November 2011), I was told that the tumour is almost certainly not cancerous. And it wasn’t. This time, I am told that the tumor almost certainly IS. The biopsies, which I haven’t yet been told about, will tell the tale. And the CT-scan (tomorrow) will tell if this IS in fact an Early Detection Story. That is, whether or not the cancer has gone elsewhere. Apparently, the most common elsewheres are the lungs and the liver. Yikes.

    So this is my non-good, non-great news. But what I have long believed, and what Deb and I have experienced vibrantly in the last eighteen months, is that God IS good and God IS great. So although I am at war with myself, gastrointestinally speaking, our hearts and our minds are at peace. And it is the peace of God. It surpasses understanding. And the will of the Lord will be accomplished.

    May the peace of the Lord guard your hearts and the joy of the Lord be your strength this day and always.