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'It was a shock' - Ravi Zacharias opens up about cancer diagnosis

Tuesday, March 24, 2020, 18:45 (IST)

Ravi Zacharias has opened about his struggles with cancer and the intense pain being caused by the tumor.

The apologist and international speaker told radio host Ben Shapiro that in spite of his diagnosis, he is still hoping to recover and get back on the road full-time by June or July.

His sarcoma, a rare form of cancer that can form around bones and muscles, was discovered after Zacharias underwent spinal surgery last month.

"It was a shock," he admitted.

The cancer treatment will commence as soon as his body has recovered from the spinal surgery.

In the meantime, Zacharias said that the "biggest challenge" was the amount of pain he is in.

"I've never felt such pain in my life. It's night pain they call it; it's the pressure ... from the tumor," he said, adding, "We'll get through it."

He has previously asked for prayers to help him endure the pain. He repeated this appeal during his interview with Shapiro, saying, "I value your prayers. I still have a journey ahead of me, but I know the prayers of people and God's strength will carry me through."

During the interview, the pair also discussed the coronavirus outbreak, which has gripped large parts of the world.

Zacharias said it could be "daunting" for people to go through something that feels so out of their control.

"We get so used to comfort," he said.

It was important, he added, not to give in to the "extremes" of panic or fear on the one hand, and "complete indifference" on the other.

"We have to combine our faith and trust in God with wisdom and common sense," he said.

"Trust in God doesn't mean you're careless in what you do. You have to protect your children, you have to protect your family, and if the elderly are the most vulnerable, they're the ones we need to protect."

He added: "Be sober-minded about it, don't be cavalier about it, and make sure that at all times, your life and your relationship with God and with your family is strong. That's what's going to matter at the end of it all."