Safety of Abiding in the Presence of God
This is the testimony of the wife and mother of two who are seriously afflicted with life threatening illnesses. Honestly I am writing this in preparation of the teaching/testimony I have to give tomorrow morning at my church’s Women’s Fellowship Breakfast. And it’s not been the greatest of months for me.
I don’t think people, even those closest, notice that things are as bad as they are or can be, some days. They see me weathering the storm at church or bible studies or family gatherings and they either express that I am so strong or they just ask how my husband is. And for some, I can see that they hope my answer is quick and doesn’t require much from them. That sounds harsh, but it is not meant to be. I am well aware that they don’t know what to say or do and frankly there is nothing they can say or do. They just don’t know that that is okay.
And some days I notice that I need to talk, and some days that means me talking to God. Because, he’s the only one who can do anything about all of this …
STOP … This post took way more than 5 minutes and edits. After all it’s the draft of a testimony presentation on a really hard subject.
I am the wife of a wonderful man, who is battling cancer and the mother of a hurting man, who is battling heroin addiction; and I do this simultaneously and not always well.
I am simply doing the next right thing on a moment to moment basis, sometimes. Definitely the last month.
My husband has been through 2 different, months long, rounds of chemo. Taking up what is slowly becoming 2 years.
The first round to eradicate a mass that had infiltrated and completely blocked his left lung; which was found to have rendered the lung nonfunctional. He didn’t even feel it not working until he caught an upper respiratory illness, which started this season in our lives. From September 2013 to February 2014 he had chemo and radiation every two weeks. The mass decreased with each CAT scan and he came to the end of this round with full use of the lung! Success! Right?
Not according to the doctors. Because a VERY little piece of the cancer had “escaped” to the liver. With this the treatments were rendered a failure.
REALLY?! But … he has full use of the lung! Really. According to their protocol.
NOT our GOD though!
So in June, after a biopsy, he went back into chemo; radiation was not an option for the liver. So from March to September 2014 my husband endured some very hard chemo treatments.
All the time he only got ill twice with nausea and once with something he caught. He lost his hair twice and suffered most from fatigue and feelings of weakness; oh and frustration driven moodiness!
He came out of the last round of chemo and the CAT scan showed that the “original” spot(s) were smaller, but that other lesions had developed.
Another fail, according to the doctors and the protocols.
And all the while this man of mine was vibrantly himself except for a few naps here and there.
So now he’s [we are] setting up for a clinical trial.
And with all this our youngest son is having a daily battle with heroin and he fell.
So that’s the story … what’s my testimony? I still don’t know how to put that into words.
I’m having trouble telling my story because I don’t feel as if I’m doing anything extraordinary. I’m just flexing with the new needs of my wife-hood and motherhood. Like I said, I try to do the next right thing and sometimes I fail miserably.
I started out with the boy being an addict. Something we’ve been dealing with for the last couple of years. At first it was just drug use, then it turned into what it is today; full on addiction to one of the worst drugs on the street. I learned to deal in the “tough love” arena. Tough love, I think, is harder on the parent, because it feels not only as if you are doing nothing, it feels as if you are abandoning your child. The good thing is that the boy is clean and doing well, so the love isn’t so tough when cancer entered and life got a different kind of hard.
So I’m doing this thing by rote and …
The doctors say cancer and they are acting as if they are delivering a death sentence. Cold and clinical … cancer, here’s a referral.
Head spinning, heart breaking and tears like a waterfall gushing out of control … I start this new season. I pray. I cry. I wake up in the middle of the night and pray while I lean over to see if my husband is breathing.
Before the diagnosis his breathing was a given. I didn’t think about it, like I don’t think about my own. Now all of a sudden I have death in my head! And I hear (now) …
Be careful what you hear …
This doesn’t feel like faith to me, so I pray more.
But then things take on a routine … The Hubs is doing fine, he’s feeling okay and we get into this new groove. But the groove doesn’t feel right. It feels like acceptance of something that is not of God. And I hear …
What you tolerate you accept. And I pray.
So I pray and The Hubs and I talk about it. We talk about a lot of things. Somewhere we begin to discuss the fact that he is going to refuse anymore chemo.
I.AM.A.MESS. … Again.
DO NOTHING?! What!? Can we really do nothing?! Is nothing what we should have done all along??
I just need this all to stop and then the boy falls down. He’s using.
So what’s the testimony? Hey, I still don’t know if this is even a testimony! Maybe it’s a lesson on the reality of what a wife/mother does during a health struggle of a loved one.
That’s what I do. I go to every appointment, I drive the boy to every court date and P.O. meeting. And I pray.
I go to God at the end of everyday. Because I don’t always hold it together well some days. In fact my comfortable day to day no longer exists.
I get depressed. I get angry (not at God); angry at doctors, protocols, cancer and heroin. I yell and I cry and sometimes I reject the encouragement of others trying to help me, when they don’t know what else to do.
I am often A.MESS. And you know what?
That is not a lack of faith. It is not a crisis of faith. It is not anger at God.
It is reality. And it is normal and it is okay! Even God accepts it, after all He knew what He was asking me to do when He created me. And He knew how I would handle it.
So … I pray.
What do I pray? Well if you read this blog regularly you know I am really into praying God’s Word. Can’t go wrong praying God’s promises or what He says about things. Yes. It’s the easy way. It may even be cheating … but hey, God gave me the answers so …
I.Pray. the answers.
I’m going to post a list of scriptures I use to keep me from trying to make deals with and/or manipulate God and His will. Because if there are a few things that I REALLY believe it’s …
God’s got this.
God has a plan.
And WE WERE healed.
These are scriptures that I, and our friends, regularly pray over my husband and son. These scriptures can be used by anyone for anything, obviously! 1 John 4:4; Isaiah 53:5; Isaiah 54:17; Psalm 118:14; Psalm 103:2; Jeremiah 30:17; Nahum 1:9 and Luke 5:17.
The Power of the Lord is present to heal you! Isn’t that wonderful?
I also rely heavily upon Psalm 91, because it contains EVERY promise God made to us! EVERY.ONE. It reassures my heart and clears my mind.That’s my testimony! That I know, no matter what has taken place on any day, at any appointment, that the Power of the Lord is present to heal! That’s how I do this … that no matter my level of fear or anger …I.KNOW.GOD. and I.Pray.Thanks for reading. God bless.