Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways
acknowledge him,and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Singing Praises, Turning Cartwheels

That's what I was doing yesterday!!  Singing praises:  Thank you Jesus, Praise God, Amen, Amen, Amen!!

And yes, maybe the actual cartwheels themselves were all just in my head, but they are an expression of great enthusiasm & excitement all the same.


For three weeks we've been in a state of limbo and wonder - laced with concern.  This time reminded me of this cross I saw once while we were on a trip.   It was rainy and stormy outside...What I could clearly see with my eyes as a beautiful cross, was masked by the bad weather, the windshield of the car, and the huge raindrops.  I could let our present circumstances cover my love for the Lord like a mask or I  could find a way to rise above it and Love Him no matter what.

Johnny, a cancer survivor of Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma, discovered a slightly painful lump/knot under his arm.  It was under the opposite arm from where He had cancer the first time.  And to use his words, "it all seemed too similar."

We had to wait 5 days to get into the doctor, only to hear what we expected, further tests would be needed in order to make a conclusive diagnosis.  Of course, the doctor was very calm, and he honestly didn't think it was Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma again.  His reasonings:

1)  Non-Hodgkins returning in patients in remission is unheard of, and Johnny is 10 years removed from it.
2)  He didn't think it was quite in the right place.


1)  Feeling of the lump with his hand was not really a way to make sure
2)  With Johnny's history, we should probably do a PET scan and sonogram, again, just to make sure.

So, the waiting game began.   A seven day wait for the sonogram and PET scan, which turned into a ten day wait - - we can thank our insurance company for that hiccup.  Then a four day wait until the doctor appointment to receive the results.

I really tried to take my cue from the doctor who said he wasn't really concerned.  He wasn't rushing and Johnny told me that the last time when he did have cancer, Dr. G. DID NOT hesitate and things moved so fast Johnny's head was left spinning.  This wasn't happening this time.  So, I dug deep and pulled from within a calmness I honestly did not know was even in ME.

Over the course of my life, I have been known to be a pretty high-strung, anxious type person.  I carried my stress and worries on my face,  for all the world to see.   As I've grown in my love for the Lord and have learned to place my burden's in His arms, I can honestly say that I'm doing quite a bit better in this regard.  Not always, but often.  And it seems I was able to do that this time, when it seem so significantly important.

From the time Johnny told me about his lump, until the moment of diagnosis, I trusted my Lord to take care of the situation.  I knew, without a doubt, that whatever the outcome, it was His outcome and would be used to Glorify Him in some way.   The day our church family gathered around Johnny and I, putting their hands on us and praying....oh humbling.  I felt hands on me, and I felt a warmth.....and finally, I felt peace.

I went forward during the invitation time - mainly to kneel at the alter and talk to God for a few moments.  Just in case He couldn't hear me over ALL the other prayers that were taking place earlier that morning.  {grin}    And I talked to Him.  I prayed for Johnny, and my heart was ok.

My one moment of weakness?   Well, .... a few days before the church's prayers,  I shared this "burden" with my girlfriends (and my mom).  I knew I couldn't handle it alone and who better to share it with than those closest to me.  I needed their strength.  I needed to know they were praying.  Without a doubt, my church is a praying church.  And I knew we could pray this "thing" in Johnny's body - - into nothingness.

OUR doctor appointment was yesterday, Monday, November 21, 2011.  I won't forget that date any time soon, if ever.  And anyone who knows me very well at all knows what a bad memory I have.  For I received the best news a wife could hear.  The lump is benign.  It's nothing.  Possibly related to the sinus infection Johnny has, but the lump itself is not infection.  The PET scan clearly shows infection and picked up the sinus infection Johnny has right now....

Last Sunday we had a guest speaker at church.  Bro. Steve Herndon.  A young, fresh, new preacher with an innocent perspective of scripture and faith.  One of his opening lines was, "How do you handle those bad situations in your life?" timely.

What did I feel as he preached on this?  As he shared with us a need to turn to the Lord and trust in Him?

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.  You will see Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.  I will be found by you," declares the Lord....." Jeremiah 29:11-14

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.  Romans 8:28

Well, Bro. Steve shared these scriptures and a few more and as I sat there listening to him, I could only nod my head and these were my thoughts;  Lord, I have been trusting you.  I don't feel conviction right now because You have been at the center of my thoughts in these last three weeks.  You have been the one I trusted in to heal my husband of any illness that could be in his body right now.  You will glorify this situation however the outcome will be.  I know You Lord, I love You Lord, and I trust you Lord..."

After my own dive into the bible this morning, I was reminded that it clearly says:  On the contrary, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel.  We are not trying to please men but God, who tests our hearts. 1 Thessalonians 2:4

Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.  James 1: 12

So - was God testing John?  Was He testing me?  Was there someone in our midst who need to be reminded that God is the great healer?  Or maybe there is someone who we needed to be a witness to -- to show our Faith in God can bring good things...

I sensed in my hubby the same peace that I'd been carrying in my heart over those three weeks.  We didn't talk about it much.  We weren't going to dwell on it.  Is this typical Pam behavior?  Um, no.  Where did the strength come from?

Well, here is one last thought.  As we stood in the parking lot after the first doctor appointment, looking at each other and trying to take in the situation, Johnny told me he was glad it wasn't me.  He said he didn't think he had enough strength to deal with the situation if I were the one that were sick.  What I said to him was this, "I didn't think WE were supposed to have enough strength on our own.  HE [I pointed upward] will give us the strength we need."

Was I going to talk the talk, AND walk the walk???  Sigh....I gave myself the liberty of ONE good cry.   Caleb was at our friends house and I cried all the way there.  I dried my eyes and said, "Lord, now the burden is yours."

Walking WITH the King,
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