Still Standing

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

James 1:2-4, ESV

The storm wasn’t visible from shore, but it swirled over the ocean miles away. Growing bigger and stronger, threatening everything in its path as it edged closer. Steadily closer. Meteorologists watched it, looking for changing patterns and shifting winds. Predicting exactly when it would make landfall, and determining how strong it would be when it hit was impossible.

No one really knew for sure.

When it did hit, there would be no shelter strong enough, no preparation guaranteed to protect. Shutters installed, sand bags placed. Evacuation wasn’t an option. All that was left to do was to wait. Continue reading “Still Standing”

Living My Best Life

I learned long ago that I could smile through what life brings me, or there is no point in living.

I learned long ago that I have a choice. I didn’t choose cancer, but I got to choose how I reacted to it.

I learned long ago that I can live, or I can wait to die.

 

And I commend joy, for man has nothing better under the sun but to eat and drink and be joyful, for this will go with him in his toil through the days of his life that God has given him under the sun. 

Ecclesiastes 8:15

 

Every three months I have scans to check for cancer progression.

Every three months, I am reminded that I am a cancer patient.

Although I have tolerable, yet uncomfortable, side effects and I visit my oncologist every month; I lead a pretty normal life. I gave up my career, but I keep busy writing my blog and freelancing for local publications. I am so tired that I become one with my couch sometimes, but I manage to care for my home and family as best I can.

Continue reading “Living My Best Life”

Winter’s Work

Winter’s work is about what happens during the cold months before the rebirth that comes in Spring, and the work God is also doing inside of me.

But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be thy glory both now and forever! Amen. 

2 Peter 3:18

I love when spring shows up in the dead of winter. It was one of those 60 degree days in February.  My windows opened to usher in the fresh air, the smell of spring and the hint of new beginnings thick on the breeze. My soul needed this winter reprieve, and my heart was full of hope and possibilities.  I had a busy day; but just before dinner, I asked my daughter to join me for a walk. I couldn’t let that day go by without spending time outdoors.

Continue reading “Winter’s Work”

First and Third Wednesdays

I joined Bible study and worried I wouldn’t fit in. I was intimidated by all these women who had it all figured out. Then, through sharing, I learned that what they had was God’s peace. In time, with their help, I found that too.

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

2 Timothy 3:16-17

My pastor’s wife invited me to join the Wednesday evening Women’s Bible Study soon after I began attending my church. I was very busy at the time. I was a wife and mother, overwhelmed with running two child care centers and taking care of my family. I recently finished treatment for stage 2 breast cancer, and was putting my life back together after chemo, surgery, and radiation. My priorities changed with my diagnosis, and I worked to get my life in balance. I cleared my overbooked schedule, and tried to focus on what mattered. I was ashamed to say that at first, I hesitated about joining the group.

Continue reading “First and Third Wednesdays”

I Find Peace in the Open Spaces

“The Lord gives strength to his people; the Lord blesses his people with peace.”

Psalm 29:11

 

The last day of 2018.  New Year’s Eve.

I put away the Christmas decorations yesterday. In the past, I was always sad when the trees were gone, the garland was removed from the staircase, and the Christmas decor was put back in boxes.

This year was different.

Continue reading “I Find Peace in the Open Spaces”

…But Now I’m Seen

Do you ever feel invisible?
Do you feel like no one sees all you do?
Know that God sees you, even when the world does not.

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

Colossians 3:23-24 (NIV)

My kitchen garbage can is one of the most overlooked things in my home. It does its job; collecting all the extra, all the unnecessary, all the stuff nobody wants. Day in and day out, filled to the top, and then to overflowing. As its contents reach the top of the can, family members will cram more in, pushing down the waste to fit more inside. For some reason, emptying the garbage can and relieving its load is not something my family thinks to do.  

Don’t worry, family … I got it!

Continue reading “…But Now I’m Seen”

Dear Dad, …

My flesh and my heart may fail,

but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

(Psalm 73:26)

 

Dear Dad,

I don’t come here often. It is a pretty peaceful place; but, honestly, I don’t like it here. I don’t believe you are here. I don’t have to come here to visit you. I feel you all around me, all the time.  I know you are in heaven. Coming here makes me sad. Coming here brings back memories I tucked away and don’t want to revisit. I remember that frigid day in February, when I shivered next to that gaping hole in the earth that was as dark and empty as the one in my heart. As I sat there, still and quiet, my heart broken, my soul crushed; I wanted to yell and scream and make it all stop. I wanted to wake up.

But it was real, Dad. You were gone.

Continue reading “Dear Dad, …”