I don’t know where to start.  I value clarity and feel I very likely will be missing the mark on this post, but…. oh well.  So much has happened in my soul this past couple of months.  I find my trust in Jesus deepening.  I find my soul thirsty and hungry in new and insatiable ways.  I find the knowledge from and my reverence for science, start to be chipped away*.  I find the glory of God surrounding me here on earth in simply profound ways and as I run by the beautiful clear river in my city I pray that the glory of God would flow through this city with clarity and that I would be a vessel overflowing, flooding my city with God’s glory that this city so desperately needs.  I find myself wrestling wanting to hold onto my old way of life (pre-cancer), while being divinely told to let go and see the even better life that lies ahead in my new way of life.  I find strength rising within me as I press into spiritual fitness.  And I chuckle at the massive aches in my body as I apparently pressed too quickly into physical fitness.  (I thank God for this body I’m in and all it can do.)  I find myself broken when I consider how little life is valued in our culture.  And I find myself ready to declare the inherent value of life (through word and action) into the spaces of my sphere of influence, wherever they may happen to be.

And my health.  Oh God I praise you for the health you have granted me.  I echo Psalm 16 praising God for overflowing my cup with blessings, for giving me a beautiful inheritance.  I have so much to humbly be grateful for.  Our God is a gracious God who loves with open arms and open blessings.  I look at my family and I am in awe with how absolutely beautiful it is!  Oh the blessings of being able to enjoy adventure as a family!  To explore beaches and waterslides and hotel beds and relationships and amusement rides and road trips.  Praise God for my health.  (I feel like Mary at the birth of Jesus treasuring up these sweet memories.)    

Of course the forecast of my health is continually “up in the air”.  (Tomorrow is MRI results day, though really I haven’t thought that much about my appointment) As such I pray. But, I’ll be honest I have NOT been a woman of fervent prayer in the last couple of years.  I’m sure many of you would expect I would be.  I would go weeks without even remembering to pray for the health of my brain.  It would appall me when I thought of it.  But it has been effort to pray, like a chore.  In the past couple months this has begun to turn.  I did not know the exact stimulus for the change until last Sunday, when our pastor spoke on prayer and said this:

“Our prayer life is a measuring stick of our faith.  Prayer and faith are intimately linked.”  He referenced Luke 18 the parable of persistent prayer, which asks the question, “But when I the Son of Man return how many will I find with persistent faith?”  This parable on prayer asks about our faith.

This makes sense.  As my faith is increasing, as my trust is growing that I actually have a powerful God I begin asking the impossible.  And moreover, believing the impossible.  I begin seeing, in my life, that science doesn’t have all the answers.  I begin seeing that this world is filled with a supernatural realm which Christ followers have access to through the amazing power of the Holy Spirit.  It is very profound.  And so my prayers are becoming more frequent, more regular, more persistent, more urgent, and more and more seeking the glory of God. A lovely story here. Ryan and I pray with our children before bed.  Praying for my health started with my twins. I began daily to pray with them asking God for healthy years to raise these children and wisdom in doing so.   I was a bit unsure how to tread into these prayers with our 6 year old, a child so bright and aware of meanings beneath words, I didn’t want to make her anxious that my cancer might be coming back.  But I started praying with her anyway that God would keep the cancer away from my body and Grandma Elias’ body (who is also in remission, but not cured).  A nightly prayer.  As the days progressed Rayna has begun praying that the policeofficers in my body (my immune system) will kill all the bad guys (cancer).  Oh bless this child and join with me praying that the police officers in my body will kill the bad guys! 

As I pray into health for my life, I do so trusting in an All-Mighty, All-Powerful God.  I also do so understanding that sin and death have wormed their way into this world and although God desires no sickness; sickness will only be eradicated in heaven.  And so if cancer returns it does not mean God doesn’t hear me, it doesn’t mean God doesn’t love me, it doesn’t mean God has lost power.  BUT, I have decided that I am healed until told otherwise. I pray to this end with these scriptures backing me:

Psalm 91 (The whole chapter is great, here’s just a portion)

If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,”
    and you make the Most High your dwelling,
10 no harm will overtake you,
    no disaster will come near your tent.
11 For he will command his angels concerning you
    to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands,
    so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra;
    you will trample the great lion and the serpent.

14 “Because he[b] loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him;
    I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.
15 He will call on me, and I will answer him;
    I will be with him in trouble,
    I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With long life I will satisfy him
    and show him my salvation.”

1 Tim. 6:11

Pursue a godly life…Fight the good fight…God who gives life to all.

Psalm 128:6

May you live to see your grandchildren

Prov. 16:31

Long life is the reward of the righteous

Romans 8:10-11

But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life[d] because of righteousness. 11 And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of[e] his Spirit who lives in you.


 Don’t you notice we have a God who loves life?  I truly believe God desires us to have a full (in length and quality) life.  I pray into this truth trusting it while also knowing what matters most is my assurance of life beyond the grave and my assurance of my soul’s everlasting life even if my body ends up falling apart before it ought to.  (note, I almost wrote – if my body fails me; but my body is made in the image of God, it is beautiful and serves me well.  My body will not fail me, but sickness may steal it too soon.)  So I do not dwell so much on this matter; but rather on the life that is present before me today, this week, this month and year.  Experiencing and counting my blessings.

I was given a great word from a fellow cancer survivor.  She shared with me that she doesn’t “live like it’s her last (day, moment, etc….)” rather she lives like she has many more (days, moments…).  Such a mentality allows one to live with a spirit of abundance and be able to set down roots for the future.  It is a mentality of believing in a future.  This has been helpful for me.  Allowing me to drop the sense of urgency my terminal diagnosis creates and to live for what today holds, hoping for the future (just as any of you hope for the future — no one is guaranteed the future and we ought to live with a measure of understanding this: prepared, not dallying in what I desire to do today, building into that which matters.)

To close, I hope this post invites you to pray fervently with me and for me.  But also I hope it invites you to survey how fervently you find yourself praying?  Do you need to step deeper into faith, declaring the truths of scripture until your soul believes in faith?  I sure did! And finally I thank you, oh how I thank all of you who have prayed, who continue to pray for my health.  To you who have voiced the prayers when I did not have faith strong enough to pray them I can not express the depth of my thanks.  Bless you and yours, I am so humbled.   

*Last week I read 2 Chron 16:9,12 “For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him…. 12 In the thirty-ninth year of his reign Asa was afflicted with a disease in his feet. Though his disease was severe, even in his illness he did not seek help from the Lord, but only from the physicians.“  (emphasis mine)  I worked in science research long enough to discern that even scientific experiments which certainly ought to work out, don’t always.  With no good answers.  Leaving scientists stumped.  Similarly medicine is not straight-forward and clear cut.  Evidence based medicine (which is the current gold-standard model of practice) relies on the treatment of an average patient.  What happens when I am the patient and I am not average? The gold standard becomes not so golden.  There is something more to these bodies than flesh and blood.  I am compelled to believe earnestly that there is much power in the spiritual realm —  even though it is not measurable and science says if it can’t be measured and recorded, it doesn’t exist.  The counselors at the cancer center note a better prognosis for those who have a faith-system.  These are secular counselors. My counselor looked so relieved when she determined I have a solid faith; I could see her hope for my situation increase.

King Asa was relying ONLY on physicians.  This is not enough for complete health (and yet conversely, praise God for wonderful physicians like my own GP and oncologist!).  Though I worked in the medical field, it took my own experience as a patient with an increasing spiritual faith, to realize medicine alone cannot answer all the questions of health.  When I read Asa’s account in these scriptures it was like the words clearly affirmed my new understandings. (Furthermore, reliance on medicine alone is self-sufficiency;  faith calls us to trust that which we cannot see -and this becomes extraordinarily beautiful when all that we can see is crumbling.)