Sunday, November 23, 2014

Where's My Trust?

I’m learning that even though cancer treatment is finished, the journey is still filled with new adventures. Although I’m tired of the 70 mile drive to Tulsa for appointments - especially my every-six-week port flush - it’s a great opportunity to think, worship, and pray. I was even thinking about what to post next on my blog. I’m sure God was smiling laughing knowing what was ahead.

As I was waiting for the nurse to come flush my port, I wondered why she was on the phone and looking up something on the computer. It was just a port flush... no doctor visit, no lab orders... so what was the confusion???

She finished on the phone and started setting up for the flush then said, “Did you know that Dr. McHam is gone?” WHAT! “He moved to Nebraska.” WHAT!! “Who moves to Nebraska in the winter?” WHAT!!!

I was totally stunned. I had just seen him last month to get my biopsy results. He didn’t say anything. I didn’t receive a letter or any kind of notice. I felt a little bit betrayed and abandoned. I even had to fight back tears. We just had a typical doctor/patient relationship, but he was my CANCER doctor!

On the bright side, I’m finished with treatment. 

But still...

And his Nurse Practitioner is still there. I see her every-other visit, and I like her. 

But still...

I was totally caught off guard by the news that my doctor was gone... and also caught off guard by how it affected me.

Here’s where I think God was smiling laughing. I started making the connection with how my reaction showed where I seemed to have placed my trust. Yes, I need to have confidence in my doctor and trust his treatment plan. But... he’s just a person. And we all know that people fail and disappoint. I will have another doctor. And who knows, he may be even better!

Ultimately, where am I placing my trust? I choose to trust in God my Savior! In fact, on the drive to my appointment, I caught the words to Christ Alone, Cornerstone:

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus' blood and righteousness
I dare not trust the sweetest frame
But wholly TRUST in Jesus' Name

And then the following morning my daughter posted this verse on Facebook:

Those who know your name will TRUST in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.
~Psalm 9:10

Doctors move, people fail and disappoint... even betray and abandon, but God NEVER forsakes those who seek Him. AMEN!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

This is Not Our Home

And I'm so glad. There's a lot of heartache in this life, and I'm incredibly thankful this isn't all there is for us.

In just the past few months, cancer seems to be everywhere - even in the headlines. Maybe it's because I've been touched by cancer that I'm more sensitive when others face that awful diagnosis... or maybe there's a rise in cancer rates... Regardless, I have family, friends, and friends with family members currently battling multiple myeloma, metastatic bone cancer, two with inoperable brain tumors, pancreatic cancer, liver cancer, two with lung cancer, breast cancer, bladder cancer, and three internet friends I'm following on FB with leukemia, a rare lymphoma, and Stage 4 metastatic breast cancer.

I'm so thankful Jesus is preparing a place for us... for eternity! A place with NO MORE CANCER, illness, or disease.

No more death.

No more mourning.

No more crying.

No more pain.

Revelation 21:4 is an AWESOME PROMISE!!!

I'll admit, the thought of heaven used to scare me. I kind of like things that are familiar, comfortable, and predictable. Well... cancer changed all of that. Nothing about it is any of those three things! But thankfully, it has given me a longing for heaven where we will see Jesus face to face and praise Him forever!

In the news this week, a young woman with a terminal brain tumor decided to "die with dignity" and ended her life before the cancer took over her body. While I totally understand not wanting to suffer the effects of the disease, I don't agree that her way is how one dies with dignity! No one wants to suffer... or have their loved ones watch them suffer... and I've struggled with "what if" while going through my journey... but Jesus tells us in John 16:33, "In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have OVERCOME the world." Praise God this is not our home!

I want to share the following encouragement from a friend. 
To all of my friends battling cancer,
I do not know.  I do not know the pain you endure. I do not know the tears you must cry.  I do not know the fear that creeps on your heart. I do not know the boiling anger you battle. I do not know the questions you never have answered. I do not know the feeling of harsh chemicals in my body. I do not know the kind of conversations you have with your children. I do not know the days you feel alone. I do not know the way you cherish each breath. I do not know the feeling of counting each mile to the hospital. I just do not know.
But I know you and I am thankful. Thankful that you don't give up. Thankful for your resolve to win your battle. Thankful for the depth of humility you have in allowing others to help. Thankful you exemplify there is more to life than outward beauty and physical comfort. Thankful for your servants heart, painfully accepting your fight is not just about you. Thankful you lean on a strength not your own. Thankful you fight for one more day to tell someone that you love them.
I know that you are the one I will tell my children about when I am teaching them endurance, patience, humility, life, love, hope and faith.

You are the one I will hold up as the definition of dignity.

God bless you. Praying for you and I love you all.

Till He returns or calls me home - 
Here in the pow'r of Christ I'll stand.