April 21, 2015
It was a Tuesday. The day before, I had a mammogram (my very first), then an ultrasound, then a biopsy of three areas of “concern” in my right breast.
Tuesday afternoon, I was in my car when I got “the call”. I remember the call like it was yesterday. The kind nurse on the other end of the phone said those words…”It’s cancer”. She then shared that she had prayed for me before picking up the phone to make that call. She didn’t have to say that. As a matter of fact, she could probably get in trouble for saying that. But she took the time to pray for me, at that time an unknown patient, and then had the guts to TELL me she prayed for me.
It was a kiss from heaven to remind me, as my world was shattering all around me, when life felt out of control, that there was someOne still in control.
I don’t remember much else from the phone call. In the moments after I put the phone down, all I could think of was my three sweet children and husband.
In those moments, cancer went from a terrible disease that happened to other people, to a world-rocking diagnosis that could possibly leave my children motherless and my husband a single dad of three young children.
My emotions were all over the place in those first few days, but I remember so clearly feeling so called to walk this journey publicly. I felt so called to write and share what God could do through cancer. I clung to the promise that He could use it for good (Romans 8:28).
Throughout this entire journey, I’ve clung with all my might to the “story beneath the story”. It’s the unseen story~ the story of FAITH that God is writing in my life and the lives of those I love. Cancer is merely one of God’s instruments to write this “story beneath the story” in my life.
Cancer? That’s the seen story. It’s the temporal story. It’s real, but it’s not the most important story that God is writing here. My God is using this terrible disease in so many amazing ways. Beauty from ashes. I hope I’m clear in sharing those glimpses of His abounding grace. The faith story is eternal. It’s what I want to focus on – not just through cancer but through all of life. I can so easily forget where to fix my eyes – and as soon as I start looking at my circumstances, I SINK!
By God’s grace, and Lord-willing, it appears that the final stretch of this seen story ~ my cancer journey~ is nearing an end. Seven weeks of radiation, starting Monday, and every three week herceptin treatments till early May. Then scans every so often, a daily pill for five years. And this seen story draws to a close.
But as long as I’m drawing breath, the unseen story – the story of faith continues. And I want to keep writing and sharing this. Not to draw attention to ME, or MY story – but to the One who is writing ALL of our stories.
I have a passion to inspire and encourage women in the trenches of life~ whether it’s a woman feeling stretched thin in the grind of life; a friend whose heart is tender and vulnerable in a difficult season or waiting, a mother struggling to find her purpose, or a sister in Christ who is walking her own story of suffering. I’ve been this woman and I long to listen, and say “yes, me too”.
I have a passion to remind my readers that through a relationship with Jesus there is purpose behind the pain, goodness in the grime of life, mission in motherhood, opportunities in the ordinary, joy in the journey, a Savior in your suffering.
Many days, I write simply to remind myself.
As the Lord closes the chapter entitled “cancer”, I will continue to write as the Lord continues to teach me, mold me, encourage me and draw me deeper into His loving arms.
My words, I pray, point to THE Word ~ Jesus, the Word made flesh. My words are just an expression of who He is to me….just one imperfect woman seeking to be an extravagant worshipper with my life…one woman, just like you, covered in His abounding grace seeking to Know the Grace-giver, and make Him known.
Will you read along, friends? Let’s continue to journey together.
(From Exodus 15~ portions from my chronological daily reading this morning)..My soul swells in worship to who God is! He defeats all enemies~ Pharaoh’s army, cancer, and the ultimate enemy- satan!
2The Lord is my strength and my song,
and he has become my salvation;
this is my God, and I will praise him,
my father’s God, and I will exalt him.
6 Your right hand, O Lord, glorious in power,
your right hand, O Lord, shatters the enemy.
7 In the greatness of your majesty you overthrow your adversaries;
you send out your fury; it consumes them like stubble.
9 The enemy said, ‘I will pursue, I will overtake,
I will divide the spoil, my desire shall have its fill of them.
I will draw my sword; my hand shall destroy them.’
11 “Who is like you, O Lord, among the gods?
Who is like you, majestic in holiness,
awesome in glorious deeds, doing wonders?
13 “You have led in your steadfast love the people whom you have redeemed;
you have guided them by your strength to your holy abode.
17 You will bring them in and plant them on your own mountain,
the place, O Lord, which you have made for your abode,
the sanctuary, O Lord, which your hands have established.
18 The Lord will reign forever and ever.”