Isaiah 49.16....see, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands... HE will fight for u. HE knows it all. HE is still on the throne, trust HIM.
Ok, so do I really trust HIM?
This past week, I received some news that I did not expect-- nor have I ever experienced it before.
First off, because I want to be a LIGHT to others and because I talk a lot, I get involved with others and I want to pray and encourage them. I do. I want to be a light. I want to share Jesus with the hurting and let others know - that GOD wins. GOD heals. GOD is our best friend and that GOD knows our heart. But I want to see healing ALL the time and I want to see the WINS all the time, I don't know if I can be that light when it appears that death is around the corner - or can I?
With this....then...I must be ready for the HARD stuff too. I can do HARD. I have. I have. But this news I got this week puts much into perspective. It makes 'my HARD' seem easy.
Then I remember, Pain is Pain and each person in pain....that is their reality. One's perspective is just that - their perspective. And when we are in pain - it does not matter. There is no 'level' of whose pain is more than another -- God is the healer - no matter what.
You see, a classmate from Watertown High School, a dear mother and woman of God, was given some news back in February - her cancer had returned. I was devastated to find out she had already dealt with Breast Cancer back in 2008 and 2009. ( I do a Susan G. Komen 3 day Walk for the Cure. I raise money for the cause. I run 5K's. I wear PINK when I am suppose too. I 'do' all the right stuff and when I had heard she had already been dealing with breast cancer back in 2009, I felt I had let her down.) We were great friends our Sophomore and Junior year and our Senior year too-- but I got too involved with Brendan and ignored my high school pals. I was just a naive teen. Anyway, class reunions, and Christmas cards kept us informed and tied for a bit. In 2009 when I made contact again, I was floored.
Time passes so quickly and things happen, and when people are out of your sight - they get 'out of your mind'. Anyway, in 2009 when we reconnected, I vowed to make sure I stay connected. That was a good thought -- then my whole life changed and I became consumed with my own turmoil....and quickly three years have passed.
No news was good news. I believed she was still cancer free.
But God knew, HE placed her name on my heart again just a few weeks ago and I casually asked a mutual friend to say 'hello' if she ever saw her. ( like our home town consists of only 50 people and that she would see her...again, being naive and just making small talk as the mutual friend also dealt with breast cancer last year and beat it! ) But she did. Our hometown is 14K+ people. But God arranged it. Laurie saw Tracey, the next day.
And the news - her cancer was back, and the doctors were not hopeful. That news was shared with me that next day. I was in shock. Her options.... She will seek treatment to buy her more time.
This is the first time, I have a close pal....a woman MY AGE...dealing with a disease that is no respecter of persons. I had sleep overs at this girl's house. I walked home to her house after school to await a basketball game. I passed notes back and forth to her during class. I voted for her when she was nominated for HOmecoming Queen!
This was too close to home.
However, we serve a GREAT and glorious God. I admit when I first heard the news, my gut ached and I thought - there is no way she can beat this twice. The doctors were just buying her time. I grieved for two days. Two days, and then, I believe the Holy Spirit came over me and I said out loud "why not?"..."Why can't see beat this a 2nd time?" And that is how I began to pray. Now the challenge of trying to make contact with her became priority #1.
Yesterday, after almost 2 weeks of prayer, I got an email and text from her. Praise God.
I posted this status yesterday...
ISaiah 49.16....see, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands... HE will fight for u. HE knows it all. HE is still on the throne, trust HIM.
This post was for me. This post could be for you. I was also praying for another woman yesterday and wanted her to read this status. And there are a few other women I prayed for and men that could use this encouragement.
This verse comforted me in a very HARD time.
When my family was fragmented and we had to do 'family' type things, it was very hard to always keep a smile on my face. Many times, I would be sitting in a restaurant ( usually a soccer event ) or at a gathering with my kids and husband and the grief or uncertainty of our situation would come over me like a flood and my thoughts would get beyond control. It was then, I would excuse myself, retreat to a restroom or a bedroom and seek God. I would pray and DEMAND that Jesus come and HOLD MY HAND...and remind HIM - God - that HE had engraved my name on HIS hand and that HE had to come and rescue me now. Mind you, I would only excuse myself for about a good 3-4 minutes and I would ask God to fill my 'order' like I was at McDonalds. Now in hindsight, I was very demanding and HE was always right there to answer and accommodate me.
|This is Tracey...taken from my yearbook - CIRCA...1984!|
At some of the hardest times, all I wanted to do was go to heaven. Right then and there. I wanted to 'end' the heartache and just be in HIS arms. I was heartbroken and at that point, hopeless. Thinking back, death or going to heaven was all I really wanted.
And as I said, God quickly come to my aide. I know HE sent extra angels right there and I would splash cold water on my face, and smile at myself in a mirror and remind myself of HIS promises. And I could go back to the meal, or the restaurant where my kids and their father were goofing around, or even go back to the 'family' gathering and just smile like ALL was well. God did it. I didn't. It was all God.
Trusting God did not come overnight. Trusting God was a process. Trusting that God would take care of me and my kids, even when I was unsure of our future was a hard thing to finally accept. And then living in that reality was even harder. Now, trusting God to give me the right words to speak to my friend, trusting God to pray for a healing on THIS side of heaven, trusting God to walk with me, as I want to encourage and be there for my friend.....this is what I was anxious about.
Can I do it?
I believe I can.
I won't question HIM.
I won't ask why Trace has to deal with this cancer again, but I will trust HIM to take great care of her. I will trust HIM to allow me to be a part of her life again.
I will trust HIM to give me the words to encourage her.
I will trust HIM with my other friends that I am praying for.
I will trust HIM with my own kids and my family...my man....my siblings...my church...my job....my life....my heart....me.
With God all things are possible.
With God all things are possible.
With God, I believe that God will heal Tracey and that HE will give her the time she needs before He takes her home.
I am really no different - I will be heading home to heaven one day too.
Trace and I are both one heartbeat away from heaven.
She loves God. She knows heaven awaits her. But she has a husband and four children and she did not expect this cancer to return.
She wants to believe and be hopeful that God will heal her.
I will believe that too!
If you are reading this, I would ask you to add Tracey to your prayer list.
She is being hopeful and 'not' realistic. Her doctors are telling her that she needs to prepare for the worst and have chemo to buy her some time. She will be starting chemo shortly. She received her port a week or so ago. She is going to fight this - and I will trust God.
I will trust God even when it does not seem......
I will trust God.
If you are reading this - thank you for your prayers.
Lord, I won't allow the Enemy to make me feel guilty that Trace and I drifted all those years ago. I won't allow him to make me think I messed it up. YOUR timing is perfect and YOU brought her back into my life for a reason and I love that. Lord, just the fact that Brendan and I were in the process of praying together when her text came across my phone - THAT was a miracle in itself as in our 25+ years together, praying as a husband and wife is a new thing - a glorious new thing -- a miracle and I believe YOU will do even more miralces, including one for Trace and her children and her husband. Lord, I am praying the chemo will SHRINK the present cancer, and Lord SLOW down each cancer cell as this cancer is a slow growing one. Lord, give her the time she needs to be ready. Lord, give her all the time she needs. Lord, I want to see her this summer, and I want to see her at our 30th class reunion next summer in 2014...Lord, we all are but one heartbeat away from our meeting with you. You heal on this side of heaven and on the other. I know you will bring beauty out of this - no matter what, but I am coming to you in agreement with Tracey, as she wants more time. Amen!
In HIM, michelle