“Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” ( Isaiah 41: 10 NKJV)
2018 began how 2017 ended for my wife and I. In the latter part of 2017 we began regularly attending an Eastern Orthodox Christian church. It continues to be a welcome change in our worship and day-to-day life.
Near the end of 2017 it was confirmed my wife, Terry, has uterine cancer. We entered 2018 with the prospect of her having surgery. People asking, “Lord have mercy”, sent many prayers to God. I rejoice that her surgery on Jan. 9 went well. She is still recovering from her surgery at the date of this post. To date, she has experienced little pain. Now we wait for her lab results that will hopefully confirm the cancer has been contained.
I have to be honest and confess that the ending of last year and the beginning of this year have been met with mixed emotions. I experienced joy that our family, friends and new church are an amazing support network. I also experienced a sense of fear at the prospect of Terry’s cancer. In my joy I expressed my faith in God. In my fear, I guess I showed a lack of faith and a reminder of my frailty.
This month’s writing prompt asks, “How is God speaking to you about your faith and writing this year?” At this point in time I’m not sure what He is saying to me. I have a strong desire to bring hope to my readers in spite of pain or challenges that life brings. Perhaps then God is saying keep writing regardless of painful challenges. Maybe that’s the direction God is preparing for me.
In anticipation of this direction I am stepping out in faith by accepting an invitation by a local wellness business owner. She invited me to present a series on grief related issues. I view this as a step of faith due to the fact the first time this series was scheduled no community interest was shown. Hopefully it will be different when I begin the series in March.
I also began a series of posts on my Blog at scarredjoy.wordpress.com. This series began at the end of 2017 and is carried over into 2018. I call the it, “Things That Matter In The Face Of Cancer.” It is a consideration of what I am observing as I walk with Terry in her experience with cancer. Perhaps I could also have called it, “Writing with Tears.”
I hope I am not discouraging readers as they read this post. I do have faith in God. I sense His presence. I know Terry’s cancer has not taken Him by surprise. I think what it might be is cancer has reminded me of our mortality as we live this life. It has also confronted us with the reality of living a life of faith in all circumstances.
When her doctor confirmed Terry had cancer I was fearful. Forgive me if that showed my lack of faith. I also asked God why it wasn’t me who had cancer. I mean, this is Terry’s second time with cancer, only a different kind. It was one of these experiences where as a man and husband I wanted to protect my wife. He allowed me to express that to Him.
In writing this post, in showing the frailty of my mortality, I realize once again that painful challenges are part of life. I cannot prevent things like cancer, no matter how much I hate them. I can, however, live and write a life of faith, knowing God knows all about it.