This has been an incredible week for me. Not in the way many may think but in the quietness of the days, the Lord has spoken to me. I am overwhelmed and there’s so much I want to share and not even sure where to begin. As you have read last week was probably my darkest week throughout this journey, I was overwhelmed with emotions and sadness. As my dad keeps reminding me, “keep your chin up”. There is so much truth in that statement. I tried dad, I really tried, some days were just not as easy as others. With my chin up and my face gazing upon our heavenly father I made it. His joy does come in the morning.
For many this season has its own set of difficulties. The holidays are supposed to be filled with rejoicing and remembering. Sometimes it’s in those memories that we hurt the most. For me, and for some of you, I know this Christmas will look so different from years past. Shoot, to be honest it looks so different from last year. Oh my, how things can change in 365 days or should I say, in just a day or a moment. For me, this year has been life-changing from love lost to cancer.
As I made it through the past week of sadness and emotions, I came into this week looking for God’s grace and mercy. As He always does he revealed it to me in abundance. I’ve been given a gift in cancer. I am not the same person I was a year ago. He has walked with me and talked with me and been faithful beyond what I deserve. He has shown me what it is to love beyond myself even if it breaks your heart. After all, isn’t that what He does for us. He has shown me what it is to depend on Him when everything else is gone. He has shown me an abundance of love in family and friends who have sacrificed their own needs to care for me in my time of need. He has provided for my physical need, spiritual need and financial needs through family, friends and strangers. That is a debt I can never repay and that my friend is what I call a gift. Those of you who have given sacrificially to one who can not repay it, have loved me as Christ has loved you.
I may have cancer but cancer doesn’t have me. My identity is in Christ, not cancer. I may have to wear fake hair and stuff my bra (sorry guys) to hide the “look” of cancer but it is Christ who is at work in me, not cancer. I believe that I am not the same person I was before October 20th. I have been given a gift in cancer and I don’t want to waste it.
This year as I look upon this Christmas season I may not be or have what I thought I would a year ago but God’s ways are so much higher than ours. It is my prayer that we all “keep our chin up” and remember who this is all about. He sent His only son to die for us, so that we may have an abundant life here on earth and eternal life in His presence. That my friend is the gift that keeps on giving.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” — Romans 15:13
“He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being taught.” — Isaiah 50:4b
“See, darkness cover the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, BUT (emphasis mine) the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you.” — Isaiah 60:2