Tuesday, July 30, 2013

An Added Blessing

I've talked about blessings that have come from this cancer before, but I wanted to share a special gift that God gave me this week.

Last week I entered a contest to meet Laura Story, the singer of the song "Blessings".  I entered the contest, yes because I was hoping to get the chance, but more because I wanted to share my story with others how God really does bless you through trials and tears.

On Monday, July 29, 2013, the radio station called me telling me that I had won!  I couldn't believe it!  So on Wednesday, July 31, 2013, I get to be with a small group of people who meet Laura Story and get to see her concert live.  What a chance God has given me!  I found out that there will be others there who are struggling with cancer right now.  I'm so thankful God has given me the chance to witness to them.  Please pray with me that God uses me in an amazing way that only He can.

And, if you want to watch this live, you can through this link:

I don't know if I will be on screen or not, but my daughter and I will be there.

To God be the  Glory!

You Just Never Know...

"Knowledge is power!"  I don't remember where I heard that for the first time.  I'm pretty sure it was part of a children's program I watched as a child.  It makes sense.  The more you know, the more you can cope, adjust and learn.  We pursue knowledge so we can make better choices.  We pursue knowledge so we can do better at our jobs.  We pursue knowledge to learn more about the hobbies we enjoy.  

But as much as we try to gain more knowledge, there are some things we will just never know.  Whether it's because we can't find the answer or because it's just not something we truly will never understand, we will never know everything.  I'm here to tell you that there are times where that is a wonderful thing.

A little over a year ago I started a new medication called a PARP inhibitor.  I was very sick and chemo wasn't working anymore.  My oncologist was able to get this medication for me in hopes that it would just help me feel better and give me a little of my life back.  That was the knowledge we had and hope for.  Guess what?  God had so much more to show me and my family.  Here is what happened this year.
  • My cancer number, or CA-125 dropped from around 1350 to 46.  While I'm not yet cancer-free, my disease is stable or shrinking.  I never knew I would be thankful for stable disease.
  • My energy has returned.  While I'm still not where I was before cancer, I am able to do more with my family again. I was able to get to most of my children's sports events and other activities.  I never knew I would be thankful for bleacher butt.
  • I am able to be a wife and a mother again.  I'm cooking again and finding so many new recipes to try.  We don't have to rely on others to bring us food or help with household chores.  I never knew that I would be happy to clean bathrooms.
But there are even more amazing things that God has shown me this year.  I can stand here today and say I am a walking miracle.  There are others that have been on this same medication and the success hasn't been as great.  It starts of well, and as quickly as it starts working it stops working.  I'm still on this medication a year later with my disease shrinking and my body is functioning well.  Often times with the mutation I have there is another mutation that goes along with it which stops the PARP inhibitor from working.  (This is something that was just recently discovered.)  It looks like, because I have been on this for so long, that I don't have that mutation.  I can only praise God for this.  He has made me a walking miracle!  I never knew I would be given a blessing like that.

God has blessed me in more ways than I can count through this cancer.  I've been able to witness to many, help others through their journeys, and I have been given countless reminders of how God has my whole life in control.  He has a better plan than I could ever dream up.  It makes me love this passage even more:

It also reminds me of this passage :
There have been so many times through the past four years where I have been reminded of this passage.  Knowledge and logic would say that these fires and waters I've had to pass through should have driven me into despair and farther from God.  Questions like "How could God do this to a good person?" or "Is God really there if He's allowing me to suffer like this?"  should have turned me away from God.  But they didn't!  God carried me!  He uplifted me!  He protected me!  Why?  Because He loves me and He wants me to be with Him in Heaven.  He loves me so much that no matter what comes my way, He is going to make sure that I can be confident of His promises to care for me and take me home with Him to Heaven.  That's why I love this next passage even more:

So, you truly just never know what God has in store for you.  No matter what struggles you, or your friends, or your family, or your acquaintances are going through, God is going to work it out better than we could ever imagine.  I'm glad there were so many things I didn't know, because God has given me even bigger gifts because of it.