Wednesday, January 11, 2012

A reprieve

Such peace early this morning
 as I pray and thank God
 for His timing,
 and for setting the pace
 on my journey.

He has slowed me down.
He has stopped me from running headlong.

He has given me
a reprieve.

Good news from the doctors.
They have consulted and decided to
wait and watch.

A decision for further treatment
 has been put on hold.

It seems that cancerous tumors of this type
 tend to take a long time to dissipate,
even up to twelve months.

 Mine could very well be doing just that.

So they will wait and watch
 to see if in three months there is any change.

Any treatment at this time has been determined
 “too aggressive”

I can relate to this term, aggressive,
as I have been forceful in my unbelief,
allowing my mind to run ahead to presumed disaster.

Given a time-out,
I have returned to practicing trust,
and patience
 and hanging on
to faith,

thus keeping myself in His peace.
(from my devotion ~ Sarah Young ~)

Oh, Lord, how often have you had to pull me back
 to my ‘Terebinth tree’;
to that place of strength and protection
from my tendency
 to allow fear and trepidation
 to sneak in?

Dear Lord,
As I continue in a state of thankfulness,
trust and patience,
Help me to keep my focus on
Your loving presence and Your faithfull promises.

Thank you dear ones, for all your precious prayers.
I am so grateful

 beyond measure.

Psalm 62: 5-7  "  I wait quietly before God,
My hope is in Him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation,
My fortress where I will not be shaken.
My salvation and my honor come from God alone.
He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me. "(NLT)
(Thank you, Marie)

Friday, January 6, 2012

The Terebinth tree at Mamre

Terebinth Tree of Mamre

It’s where the Lord appeared to Abraham.

The Terebinth is an oak tree, made of sturdy wood and is a strong representation of mighty strength and power.

 It also has an extensive root system and therefore remains green
 even in years of drought.

In our Bible reading in Genesis today, Joe and I came across the scripture where the Lord appeared to Abraham by this tree.  He was sitting near there in the heat of the day, probably still sore from the circumcision rite a few days earlier. He’s almost 100 years old and has been waiting on the Lord and His promise of a son for a very long time.

God met him there and told him he would finally have his son in a year’s time.
His wife, Sarah was listening to the conversation from inside their tent.

She laughed, doubting the ability of God...
in spite of His promise.

How often have I doubted the promises of God?  There have been times where I have allowed my mind to become un-tethered from the assurance of His presence, allowing it to wander to and fro with uncertainty and fear.

I want to rest and wait under the terbinth tree I have placed in my mind,

where the roots run deep and are firmly established in living water.

It will be my special place where I meet with God,
believing in an encounter with Him

It is here that I will experience His love,
security and await the fulfilling of His promises.

It will be a place of great significance in my life
 for such a time as this,
for this season in which I find myself.

If I sit there long enough, tied to Him,
I will find that my roots will be entwined with His,
 deep in Christ and will extend and expand from here.

Blossoms will develop on my tree
 representing his insights to me.

They will represent the growth of my love
and committed faithfulness
 and trust in Him.

I am at peace today in my journey with Him. 

 His mercy is new to me each morning.

Thank you for your many heartfelt responses...
your prayers and your encouraging words.

 I already see the blossoms spreading out on the branches.

“Look at us,” said the violets blooming at her feet,
 “all last winter we slept in the seeming death
 but at the right time
God awakened us,
and here we are to comfort you.

~ Edward Payson Rod ~

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The next right thing...

I received the phone call today.

I was lying on the bed snoozing a little,
as I was fatigued from my efforts at the gym this morning. 

A sweet woman, Kathleen Rhodes, helped me through
 yoga stretching exercises and then on for a round of beginners Pilates.

 I’ve never tried either before,
and quickly discovered just how out of shape I really am muscle tone or strength
whatsoever it seems. 

Could it be from months of lying around doing nothing?

‘Dr. Harry Lieberman’ displayed across my phone screen
 and I knew it was the phone call we have been waiting for.

I expected him to tell me that all was well
and that the Mayo Clinic was sure,

beyond a reasonable doubt,

that the remaining cells were certainly dead.

However, it is unclear to them as to whether the
 FEW remaining residual cancer cells
 are or will be active. 

There are two foreseeable options;

1) Irreversible resection surgery resulting in a colostomy bag
(Colostomy - a surefire way of eradicating the problem))
2) A dose of radiation beads placed directly on the remaining tumor
 (Brachytherapy - hopefuly killing off the remaining cells)

Dr Lieberman has been in contact with my oncologists,
Dr. Manfredi and Dr. Barnes,

and they all agree;

Dr Lieberman will present my case to a board of doctors
 (experts in their field)
who will look over the culture reports and hopefully come
 to a unanimous recommendation for
 option number two.

Of course having the resection operation, and wearing a colostomy bag


will do away with the problem...but there are just a few
undetermined cancerous cells left.

I think the radiation beads should work and scare off these guys!

Without me having know......wear a bag.

At either this point...

I’m feeling a little numb and apprehensive. 

You see the mind is quick to run, and pick up speed going full throttle towards the unknown future and all the terrors it may bring.


Lord, bring me back to this present moment...

where You help me decide to do the next right thing...

as I pray and seek Your guidance...trusting in You, my Savior,

clinging tightly to Your legs, so that You may carry me.

Please join with me and pray that I choose to do the next right thing.

It will help me get unstuck and  stop feeling sorry for myself.

I HATE to admit’s an emotion that plagues me sometimes

“Every day the choices just keep on comin’ up
And I know it all comes down to fear, oh Lord
And I surrender myself to what the future may bring.
Well...I’m just trying to do the next right thing.”

- T. Graham Brown -

"...take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ."
2Corinthians 10:5

Monday, January 2, 2012

Another opportunity to get it right!

Give thanks for this New Year and “another opportunity to get it right”
(as some of my dear family members and friends have stated on FaceBook...albeit, in their own words)

I’ve given it a lot of thought, the only way to get it right is
 to keep my focus on Him in all things...great and small,
no matter what comes my way.

 Proclaiming once again;

I am letting go and holding out my hand....once again.
Depending upon You, Lord, for every little thing.
Here I this state of uncertainty
and placing my trust in You,
where it belongs.

I pray you had a wonderful Christmas and that this year will be an opportunity to ‘get it right’...with His help, with His guidance. It’s an ongoing journey, for sure, with missteps along the way. 

But He is faithful! He will reach down His hand and pick us up, dust us off and set us back on the path...

’His grace reaches lower than your worst mistake’ (Phillips, Craig & Dean)

Joe and I have experienced the importance of prayer, trust and standing together firmly hand in hand when facing tribulation and trials.

I want to share with you this one story about Joe and I that is dear to my heart.
I will pass it on to my children and their children’s children.

It’s an example of how close we can be.

I wanted to buy something for Joe this Christmas that represented my love and gratefulness for all that he has done for me, for all that he has been through in my illness and for his steadfast support and devotion through it all. 

I picked out a beautiful bracelet and had it it engraved with a word that expresses all that he has meant to me...especially with what we have endured and I came across this

Is it not beautiful?!  Also, very masculine. 
The word I chose was ‘PROTECTOR’
which aptly expresses what he has been for me. 

He has been my strong prayer warrior and protector,
always by my side through this whole ordeal.
If you’ll notice, the bracelet is shaped like a handcuff
which represents his willing attachment to me.  
He’s been at every doctor’s appointment, hospital stay,
and my every ‘meltdown’.

I could hardly contain my excitement when I eagerly pushed it in front of him just after our devotion early Christmas morning.  As he opened it his expression showed a little more curious emotion than I had anticipated as he inspected it running his fingers over the word...
“I love it”, he said slowly as he smiled at me.
I kissed him and poured out my heart telling him how grateful I am and how fitting I thought the word was and how much he means to me.

The answer came later when I opened my present from him, a beautiful silver bracelet with several charms...lovely!

There was one charm in particular, however,
that holds so much meaning to me.

...a little firefighter with the title

How precious this bracelet is to me.  
We don’t always meld together like that, but when we’s *magical*