Monthly Archives: February 2012

Putting on the Armor

   Put on the full armorof God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.

 Ephesians 6:11

I’ve been a Christian for a long time and I know that when you take your stand against the devil you better be properly prepared. But what I didn’t know is that sometimes God helps you get dressed. In fact this past week He has dressed me for battle.

It began last Monday with a phone call from a man in California, whom I’ve never met, that is the brother of a woman I barely know. This man is a cancer survivor who happened to have the same cancer as me and was willing to share his experience. During our conversation he gave me lots of helpful hints about how to manage my treatments but there was one thing he said that changed my perspective. As he explained the radiation treatments he told me, “When they strap you in, it’s your time with God. Separate yourself from what is going on in your body and use that time to pray.”

Thank you God for prompting this man to call and give me a battle plan in advance.

Next came the “casting” for radiation which was done last Thursday. It was the weirdest thing I’ve ever been through. They literally strapped me down to a table; rubber banded my feet together to keep me still and then forced a hot sheet of plastic mesh over my face fastening it to the table. Talk about being pinned down… I couldn’t move – which is the objective. The goal was to make a mold that will keep me in the exact same position for every radiation treatment.
(Pictures above)

With my face and shoulders firmly fitted in my new helmet, my waist securely belted to the table and my feet fastened together God showed me that He indeed was dressing me for battle.  As I laid motionless on the table waiting for the cast to harden I couldn’t help but think of Psalm 46:10, “Be still and know that I am God”. If you know me, you know that I never sit still. It was as if God was saying, “I’ve got this”.

Thank you Lord for making me “be still” so that you can fight this battle for me. Thank you for the clear picture of the armor you designed for me.

Lastly came the placement of my port which was done on Friday. Ouch! An inch long incision was made on my chest to place the small device just under my skin. I’m told, this device provides the best way to dispense the chemo and other drugs that will be used to kill the cancer that is in me.

It may sound corny, but with this device inserted just under my skin I can’t help but think of the sword of the spirit that I must wield against my enemey, which is the word of God that I have hidden in my heart.

Thank you Lord that you have clothed me for battle and given me the grace I need to fight.

Now I’m ready for battle and it’s a good thing, because today at 9:00am I start my first chemo treatment and Thursday afternoon I will have my first radiation treatment. I have to admit that I am nervous and afraid, but it is such a comfort to know that my God loves me enough to give me a beautiful word picture of His protection as I enter the battle.

I appreciate your prayers as I enter my week of first treatments.

Sheree

PS- If you haven’t already signed up to receive updates when I post, please do so today by leaving your email address in the top right tab that says Subscribe to this blog.

 

By |February 27th, 2012|30 Comments|

Fresh Perspective

The alarm sounds and you begin to wake up. Your mind is foggy and you wonder what day it is. Before you know it the sleep timer has gone off again and it’s time to face your day. As the day begins you can’t help but notice the same boring routine you faced yesterday is back again. Everything from blow drying your hair to watching the evening news has become monotonous. And before you know it, you click off another day on your calendar.

Sound familiar?

Many days have clicked by in my boring routine as I’ve waited for weekends or vacations to brighten my existence. Sure there have been mid week surprises here and there, but for the most part one day leads to the next without much excitement.

That is… until God decided I needed a fresh perspective.

His prescription for my fresh perspective has been the crisis of cancer that I am now in the midst of. There’s nothing quite like an illness to make you appreciate life; even if it’s a boring monotonous one.

I first noticed this new perspective earlier this week when I sat down to blow dry my hair, a chore I normally find boring but necessary. The thought suddenly hit me; at least I have hair… something I may or may not have in a few weeks. (They say I probably won’t lose it all, but it will thin.)

As the day went on I noticed other changes to my perspective. Traffic didn’t bother me; at least I could get out and drive. Household chores that normally frustrate me were a delight because I was thankful to have the energy to do them. Even getting up in the morning was easier now that I realize how blessed I am to be able to get up.

Yes, God’s prescription is working. Having two surgeries in three weeks has already given me a fresh perspective of my life and I’m not even half way through the process.

Next week I will start chemo and the week after radiation treatments begin. Life as I knew it; albeit boring and monotonous, will become something I long for. As my perspective is changed and challenged through this season, I pray that yours will be  too.

To follow my progress please subscribe to my blog. You can do that easily by filling in your email address in the “Subscribe to this blog” tab in the right hand column.

God Bless!

Sheree

By |February 21st, 2012|6 Comments|

Opinions, Everyone Has One

Opinions, Everyone Has One

When you’re lost, I’ve always found it helpful to ask for help.

It’s been eighteen days since my diagnosis of throat cancer and I find myself walking a road I’ve never been on before. Considering that it’s new territory for me, I don’t mind asking those who know the way for directions. But I’m learning that like a physical journey, there are often many routes to the same destination and making the decision as to which route to take requires wisdom and a careful examination of all the variables.

As I’ve considered the options available to me for arriving at the destination of “completely healed” I’ve noticed that there are no shortage of opinions (variables) as to which route is best. There’s everything from conventional medical treatments to the holistic medicine, to dietary changes and finally healing by faith alone; all of which have varying views within themselves and all have proven to work. So… which route is the right one for me?

 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to
reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. James 3:17

As a rule… when I don’t know which way to go I’ve made it a habit to ask God.

He knows the variables. His wisdom is pure, peaceable, impartial and sincere. He knows the beginning to the end. His opinion of the best route for me is the opinion that matters most.

Here are the questions I’ve asked God and the responses I believe He has given me:

  • Lord, I’ve been faithfully serving you so why is this happening to me?

The Bible is full of stories of men and women who were faithfully serving Me and yet many faced equally challenging situations. Read their stories and notice that in every case my redemption was made known. This is happening to you so that My redemption will be made known through it.

  • Lord, my doctors are recommending chemo and radiation which seems extreme to me especially considering I don’t feel sick. The idea of putting this poison in me and knowing that it can make me extremely sick doesn’t make sense. What should I do?

This isn’t the first time one of My servants has faced poisonous circumstances.

After Paul was arrested for preaching the gospel a decision was made to transport him by boat to Rome. Once at sea they encountered a hurricane which resulted in a shipwreck on the Island of Malta. Cold and wet they built a fire and as Paul was gathering brushwood a poisonous viper fastened itself on his hand. But Paul shook the snake off and suffered no ill effects which left the Islanders to wonder how this could be. Through this experience Paul was able to minister to many on the island and they were healed.

Like I did with Paul, I will help you will shake off the effects of this poison and through the process you will be able to minister to many. (Acts 27 & 28)

  •  But Lord, can’t you just take this away?

My son asked this question too, right before He went to the cross when He prayed, “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” (Luke 22:42)

If he wouldn’t have been willing to give up His will for mine, my glory would not have been made known and my redemption wouldn’t have been made available for all.

  • Lord, He was Jesus - I’m not sure I can walk as bravely as He did.

Consider my servants Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego who were mere men. They defied the law of the land and refused to stop worshipping me despite being sentenced to death my fire and they claimed My goodness not knowing the outcome of their circumstances. Because of their resolve to enter the fire trusting me, I met them there.   (Daniel 3)

Follow their example and I will join you in the fire.

My Response:

As I have sought God for His wisdom and direction for this journey, I feel He has given me a clear answer. Even though it won’t be easy, it may hurt and I might get sick – I will bravely walk through the fire, shake off the ill effects of the poison and let God’s glory shine in me.

On Wednesday I will follow the directions of my doctors and have my tonsils removed. Approximately 3 weeks later I will begin both chemo and radiation therapy.

 

 

 

 

By |February 5th, 2012|14 Comments|