that crazy cancer girl

My journey through cervical cancer

Falling

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I picked out the highest pair of high heels I could find in my size and sat down to try them on at the Pic and Pay shoe store. My 11 year old self thought I could walk in these with no problem. My sister Becky was trying on a pair as well. We were supposed to be looking for school shoes. I stood up to walk and took about 3 steps before my ankles started wiggling and down I went… HARD! Becky was laughing so hard at me and although embarrassed I laughed along with her. Mom was none to pleased with our crazy antics, but we eventually found our shoes and left.

Our oldest sister Laura had quite the array of high heels in her closet and when she wasn’t home I would slip in her room and try on her heels. I wanted to get the hang of wearing high heels. One Sunday I picked out a bright red pair she had and thought I would wear them to church. I got so many laughs that Sunday from so many people. I was trying to be older than what I was. Mom didn’t try and stop me because she knew this was part of growing up. By the time I got home my feet hurt so bad and were all blistered. I didn’t touch heels for years after that!

To this day I only wear heels if I absolutely have to! Other then looking like a drunk linebacker trying to walk in them, it also puts me on the mammoth woman chart as a six foot four tower! Do you know how hard it is to talk with other women when you are two heads taller than them? Not fun!

Through these past six months I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have fallen on my face. Unlike the physical fall I did in the Pic and Pay, I have mentally and spiritually fell. Tonight I cried on the phone with my Dad because I am in a lot of pain. Not only from the cancer, but now I have a bum tooth and the whole side of my face is swollen up and no dentist will see me without cash up front. I do not have $400 to get it fixed. I pray out to God to fix it and so far nothing has changed. I told my Dad that I know God is listening and I thought He wanted the best for His people and frankly I don’t feel like this is the best! I was angry! Dad being the level headed one in the conversation said, Sarah, don’t think about what He hasn’t done, think about all the things He has done for you…I was spiritually falling. My faith hasn’t been what it should be. I am doubting more and more.

I don’t want to be this way and think angry thoughts towards God. I have to listen to Dad and remember all God has brought me through and not focus on the bad. I have to get up and try again. I know God has everything under control and I can’t question that. I just have to pray that maybe He could fix my tooth and then have faith that He will! Same with my cancer, I can’t keep having these negative thoughts and allowing satan to try and weasel his way into my mind. I don’t want to fall on my face. I want to walk and hold my head high and know that God is walking right beside me and He is not going to allow me to fall!

What are you falling on tonight? Is your faith wavering and doubts are clouding your mind? Instead of complaining about what God hasn’t done why don’t you praise Him for what He has done for you.

 

Matthew 14:31  “Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him.
“You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”

 

 

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I can’t fix it Mommy…

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As I hung up the phone with the school counselor, my heart felt heavy. Hot tears threatened to fall down my freshly applied makeup. She had just told me something so sad that our son had said. I just stared straight ahead at the road as I drove through town. I had questions, but the only thing I wanted to do was wrap my arms around him and hold him. When he came home from school we sat him down and talked to him about what had been going on. He started crying and told us about the bully at school that has been relentless in his efforts to make our son feel like the bottom of the barrel. Then he looked at me with those amazing eyes of his and said, “You have cancer Mom and there isn’t anything I can do to fix it”…

The weight of the world was resting on his sweet little mind and he did not know how to “fix” it. My heart broke looking at all the worry on his little face. We finished talking to him and then prayed with him for peace and comfort through these hard times. We cuddled for a bit then he went to work on homework. I sat on the couch with my eyes closed and felt a little angry. As much as cancer affects me, it affecting our sweet kiddos just as much. They act most of the time like nothing is different, but when we have moments like these it’s like someone picked a scab off a huge wound. It hurts so much and I don’t want to have cancer because I don’t want them to hurt like this.

My prayer through all of this has been, God, I want your will to be done, not mine. It’s so hard to give up those reigns, especially when most of us women like to have control over things. In Matthew 26 it tells us that Jesus said these words three times. In His most agonizing, painful, sorrowful time, Jesus cried out to God. He asked God to take the cup away from him, to find another way, to free Him from His wrath, but He finished the prayer with this : Your will be done

I don’t want to hurt, I don’t want to see my husband hurt and most of all I don’t want to see our kiddos hurt. Jesus understands this. We pray and we pray, but prayer doesn’t change God’s mind, it changes our heart. Prayer changed my heart… Tonight I am praying for God to take control in our son’s heart. He needs peace and comfort and I prayed for God to take away the fear. No child should have to live with that kind of stress on them. They should be able to enjoy being a kid and feel happy and carefree. I know God’s will, will be done for my healing when He is ready. Until then we have to go through the storm and do our best as a family to understand everything that is placed on our path.

As I walk in the kids room and watch them sleep I pray peace over them. My heart is so heavy, but I know God is protecting us and watching over us. He will bring us through these trials and we will come out stronger then when all of this started.

If I could ask for your prayers not for me tonight, but for the kids. It’s hard on them to deal with so many changes in the past 6 months. Pray for peace and a sense of understanding.

Matthew 19:14  But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”

 

 

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Have you been Forgotten?

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I sat down on the curb and started crying, I had been forgotten… again. My parents used to take two vehicles to church every Sunday because Dad had to be there early and Mom would finish getting herself and all of us kids ready and then come a little later. When church let out we would either say I’m riding with Mom or I’m riding home with Dad. I guess I failed to do that and was more focused on running around playing with my friends. Mom thought I was with Dad and Dad thought I was with Mom. The church got locked up and everyone left and sat on the curb and waited and cried.

This was not the first time and I had a feeling this would not be the last. I didn’t have a cell phone to call them and would have to wait until they got home to realize I was not with either of them. It would take a good 30+ minutes before Dad would come flying up the church driveway and would apologize at first, then follow it up with, Do you realize how much gas it takes to get from our house to the church and back? Why were you not paying attention?

Gas was all of sixty cents a gallon back then, but I can imagine it felt the same as what we are paying now. We did live a good 15-20 minutes away from the church, but was it really my fault that they forgot me? I still to this day do not think so. I say if your going to have a lot of kids, it’s your responsibility to count heads. 😉

I feel sort of like I’m sitting on that curb again just waiting. I’m not in treatment anymore and I only see the Dr. now about once every couple of weeks. I am waiting for God to show Himself hugely through all of this. When I saw my Dr. last week she told me I still have 6 weeks to wait until I get the pet scan. Do ya’ll realize how long that is?? That’s like telling a kid that they can’t get any new toys because they have to wait for Christmas! It’s really hard!!!

The other day believe it or not it was almost 80 degrees. I type this as light snow is falling outside my window… at the beach… in spring! ( Bless you Jesus for showing us a little humor) I sat on my porch and decided I would clean out my flower garden. Darin got the rake out for me and as I was scrapping away all the pine needles and hay (winter blanket stuff) I started seeing little bits of green here and there. The more I cleaned out, the more beauty I saw coming out of that ground. The picture I included at the top is my beautiful Hyacinths that were hidden.

As I was doing this God placed it on my heart that I am just like those flowers. They waited all winter long under that cold hard ground. I had forgotten what all I had planted last year and figured I would see come spring what all came up. They stayed under just strengthening themselves. They had to push through the cold and the hard dirt to surface themselves into something beautiful. God is doing that same thing in me. I often feel forgotten and left on the curb, but God is doing something amazing in me and I am going to have to push through the pain and these dark seasons and when this is all done, I will have something beautiful! Whether it would be a beautiful testimony of God’s healing powers or a beautiful new body in Heaven. Either way it’s a win – win situation!

Do you feel forgotten or left out in the cold. Oh my dear friends you don’t have to feel that way! God’s wants to make you new, He wants to take care of you and heal you and help you. Whatever the situation, give it to Him! He is waiting and will never forget you.

Lamentations 3:25  The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him

 

 

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Catching up

Update

You know when you watch your favorite show on TV and when it starts it will say, Previously on such and such… I feel like I should start out with that. Previously on that crazy cancer girl, Sarah needed help! 😉

This week has been trying at times yet God has shown Himself true to His word that He will never leave us or forsake us. I had my appointment on Thursday and it was painful, but this Dr. is so amazing in her ability to make me feel as though I am her only patient and to make me understand so easily what is happening in my body. All the pain I have been is apparently is normal… Now I have been called many, many things over the years, but I can assure you, “normal” has never been said in the same sentence as my name. 😉

She explained to me that my body has been radiated for almost 5 months which has served as a buffer for the pain. Now the radiation is leaving my body and my body is not liking it one bit. It’s wondering where that buffer went and I am feeling e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g! Now I am going to get a little personal, but I warned you all about a possibility of that happening when I started this thing, so skip to the next paragraph should you not want to read this. Now for an entire month every time I had to pee it felt like I was giving birth. The sweating, crying and wondering if my insides were going to fall out. My Dr. had told me that I had to be patient for a month until my next appointment, so thinking this was part of cancer, I did not call her.

Well on Thursday when she took a urine sample, not only do I have an extreme UTI, but the lab told her that I have the worst bladder infection that they have seen in the history of the lab. Almost so that if these rounds of meds I’m on don’t work then I may have to go to the hospital and get antibiotics through an IV. She was not real happy with me that I didn’t call. However I told her, my Dad always said if you are going to go, then go big! 😉 I have been faithfully taking my pills as I really want to avoid any more hospital stays!

She did an internal exam and you can only see a little tiny bit of the tumor as most of it is up near my uterus. What she could see she told me that it does look like it has slightly shrunk a little off the side walls. She is not sure how much if any the upper part has shrunk. I go back next week for a more thorough exam and they will be able to give me a better answer to what is going on. She has already informed me that I still have a very long road ahead of me and we are still sort of at the start of things…. I guess she didn’t realize I wanted to be done with all of this by summer. 😉

Regardless the pet scan is scheduled for May and then we will see everything and how it looks and go from there. That is the hardest part is the waiting.

On a lighter note, we celebrated our son Jax 9th birthday this weekend. Loads of fun! We took him out to his favorite place, Cracker Barrel for dinner on Friday. Saturday we had a house full of boys for a hockey themed birthday party, then Saturday night we went to see our local team the Norfolk Admirals play. Sunday we went to church, play practice then took him to see the new movie, God’s NOT Dead! What a phenomenal movie!!! I challenge each of you to go and see this movie! I pray that I am NEVER ashamed of sharing God with everyone around me.

Over all I would have to say aside from the pain, it was a blessed week. God always provides and I continue to be amazed at what He does for us. Thank you for all your prayers and continued support of not only for me, but for our family. I pray you all have a blessed week!

Deuteronomy 31:6  Don’t mistake God’s patience for His absence. His timing is perfect, and His presence is constant. He’s always with you!

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Exit stage Left

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As soon as I sat down I looked for the exit sign. When I realized it wasn’t near me I quickly moved before someone else grabbed that seat. I have been that way all my life. I HAVE to be close to the exit. Not sure why that is, but I always think in case of emergency I know where the exit is and I want to be as close to it as possible. When I see the exit sign it’s definition to some may mean, the way out. To me it means, run! Go! Get out! Yes, it’s that’s serious. I have never wanted to sit up front in school or in church because it’s far away from the way out.

I haven’t talked much about the pain side of cancer on here because I haven’t wanted people to know that sometimes I am weak. Tonight though I am opening myself up and showing the raw side of things. I’m not ok… Oh I can put on a great face when I need too, but it’s fake. This past month the pain has been extreme. I cry myself to sleep and wake up at least 10 times a night because of the pain. If your a woman who has ever experienced child birth, then times that by 10 and you will kind of realize the pain level. The drugs just aren’t doing anything anymore and I am so depressed by it all.

People are getting angry with me because I haven’t spent time with them, but it’s not because I don’t want to. It’s simply for the fact that I don’t want anyone to see my weak side. I can be ok at one moment and then 2 minutes later I am doubled over praying to God to make it go away. I wouldn’t want to go out with someone and have that happen. One it’s embarrassing, two it would be awkward for both of us and three, this one being the most honest… I’m tired of people looking at me with pity. I miss the way people used to treat me before cancer.

I’m tired of laying around and resting or reading. I miss building, sewing, painting, outdoor work and so much more and when I attempt to do that people are like, no you need to rest and sit down. I seriously want to scream at them. I don’t want to lay down! I know my limits! If it starts to hurt then I will rest!!

I cried on Darin’s shoulder last night while we lay in bed. I know the tumor is growing. I don’t want to accept it, but the way my pain has been lately and a few other things that are happening have led me to believe it’s growing. I cried because I don’t want to die. I’m not ready! I don’t want to leave him and the kids and my family. I’m angry over all of this! I don’t want to slow down and rest. I want to enjoy everything that I love before I can’t do it anymore.

I have one friend that through this whole thing has not treated me any differently. She ask me to build something for her daughter and her husband was a little upset that she ask me, but for those 5 hours it took to build that thing I didn’t think about the pain I was in or the fact that I have cancer or anything else. I was in my element and I thoroughly enjoyed every blessed minute that it took! I’m not ready to give all that up or anything else for that fact.

Tonight I am looking for that exit. I need to get away from the pain and frustration. I need to get away from the depression and tears. I have been praying for God to heal me, to get away from the pain and have mercy on my body. I will not accept anything less then the best that God has planned for me.

I have an appointment on Thursday to get an exam and have my pet scan scheduled. I’m anxious to see what has changed in my body. I’m asking for extra prayers this week. I feel lost, lonely, empty, hurting and raw.

I don’t have much encouragement to give tonight and I apologize if that’s what you came here searching for. I try not to stay in these valleys very long, but needed to share what I’m going through. I’m not looking for pity, just prayers. I guess what I really am looking for is for God to show Himself. Anything, just to show me that He hears my cries.

One of my favorite songs is from a group called Third Day. The song is called Cry out to Jesus. Instead of a verse tonight I am going to share the lyrics. I encourage you to pull up the YouTube video and listen to the song and let it bless you tonight.

Cry Out To Jesus – Third Day (2005)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JmVxRl5bc4Y

To everyone who’s lost someone they love
Long before it was their time.
You feel like the days you had were not enough
When you said goodbye.

And to all of the people with burdens and pains
Keepin’ you back from your life.
You believe that there’s nothing
And there is no one who can make it right.

There is hope for the helpless, rest for the weary,
And love for the broken hearts.
There is grace and forgiveness, mercy and healing
He’ll meet you wherever you are.

Cry out to Jesus. Cry out to Jesus.

For the marriage that’s struggling just to hang on
They lost all of their faith in love.
And they’ve done all they can to make it right again
Still it’s not enough.

For the ones who can’t break the addictions and chains
You try to give up but you come back again.
Just remember that you’re not alone
In your shame and your suffering.

There is hope for the helpless, rest for the weary,
And love for the broken hearts.
There is grace and forgiveness, mercy and healing
He’ll meet you wherever you are.

Cry out to Jesus.

When you’re lonely and it feels like the whole world is falling on you
You just reach out, you just cry out to Jesus

Cry to Jesus.

To the widow who suffers from being alone,
Wipin’ the tears from her eyes.
For the children around the world without a home,
Say a prayer tonight.

There is hope for the helpless, rest for the weary,
And love for the broken hearts.
There is grace and forgiveness, mercy and healing
That meets you wherever you are.
There is hope for the helpless, rest for the weary,
And love for the broken hearts.
There is grace and forgiveness, mercy and healing
That meets you wherever you are.

Cry out to Jesus. Cry out to Jesus.

Cry out to Jesus. Cry out to Jesus.

 

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Running the Race

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When our son Caleb came to us and said that he wanted to run a marathon, I didn’t think he was serious. We have never been a running family. Sure the kids run around and play, but as far as competitive, no it just doesn’t happen. I said sure son, that would be great! Before we knew it he was staying after school to train with his classmates, he started running around the neighborhood and he became dedicated! I felt like I was watching a rerun of Forrest Gump, that boy was running everywhere!

The closer it got to race day, the more he ran! I have to be honest, I was impressed! When I realized how serious he was about this I thought how can we cheer him on and make him know that we are with him all the way. I have seen pictures in the paper of this race from previous years and everyone dresses up and has a lot of fun with it. I broke out my scissors and thread and started making tutus and t-shirts and everything clover! I bought some iron on letters and we made “Team Caleb” shirts. He got so excited seeing that we were doing all of this for him.

Yesterday morning we all got up and put on our outfits and got ready for racing day!

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Oh it was so much fun and to feel the energy and excitement in the air was awesome! I enjoyed every moment of that day. Caleb finished his mile in just under 10 minutes. He told me, Mom I would have been a lot quicker, but I had a lot of people in my way. 😉 The pride just bubbled out of me. I’ll admit, I was glad I had on dark sunglasses because I let a tear or two fall. Some may think it’s weird to feel this way and believe me, it’s weird for me to feel this way. I have never been a crier, ever! However when you have a disease, everything becomes something I can’t really explain. I love my husband so much more, I love and cherish our kids so much that it hurts. I take nothing for granted and I never want to miss an opportunity to have fun with my family. I can only explain it as if I were blind and then I could see or I was deaf and then suddenly can hear. The feelings and emotions are intensified so much… I felt so proud of our sweet Caleb that I couldn’t help but shed a few tears.

As I was watching him run yesterday I thought it’s just like God. We wake up everyday and face the trials of life and God is cheering us on. When we make decisions to follow Him, He is just like a parent and His heart swells with pride. He feels so much for us and loves us so much that He died for us, for you and for me. Just like I crave spending as much time with my family as possible, God is craving time with us.

You know, God is really for us.  He wants us to finish strong.  Just like a loving parent, He is yelling at us not to give-up, to do our best, to push on.  I know the love and pride I feel for our kiddos is just a glimpse of what He feels for us.

We spend so much time with friends, on our phone, watching tv, but how much time do you spend with God? When was the last time you dusted off your bible and read it? When do you pray, only when you need something or to say thank you God for the many blessings you have given me. Won’t you let Him cheer you on?

Hebrews 12:1(b) …”Let us run with patience the race that is set before us.’

 

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My Other Disease

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I was standing in front of the door holding it open and yelling, will you hurry up? Let’s go! Come on! We were running behind and I HATE being late for anything! Our Dad taught us the value of being early for everything as to not take advantage of someone else’s time. However now, we have a teenager who likes to primp a little bit longer and 2 boys who seem like they lose one shoe on purpose when it’s time to walk out the door. It’s a constant thing of Mom, do I even have to wear shoes? Yes son, we are not the Flinstones, you have to wear something on your feet!

When Darin is out of town, I am the only responsible adult that is taking care of the kids. It’s just Me, the kids and a constant running SUV going from this practice to that practice and everything in between. While they are at school, I am doing load after load of laundry, cooking, cleaning, running errands, paying bills… oh the bills. When they come home it’s homework, projects, practices, I have to feed them at some point and then showers, prayers and bedtime.

Today I felt like I was floundering! Riddled with worry of the unknown, frustrated with the present. My heart felt so heavy, dreading the next few days on my own. I looked up and said, Lord, I need a miracle in the midst of all of this. I am in pain and need to rest and I can’t for a few days and I need your strength! It’s just like God to show me that I unfortunately have another disease other then cancer. Worry, boredom and frustration were all mere symptoms of the disease of ungratefulness. Yes, I was being ungrateful. Some might argue that worry is not a sign of ungratefulness, but think about it. Worry and gratitude cannot coexist.

Instead of stressing over doing it all myself, I should be thanking God for the amazing three kiddos that He has blessed us with. I should be thanking God that we have a reliable vehicle to run them from activity to activity, I should be thanking Him that regardless of the pain I am in, that He got me out of bed this morning and I am still able to move around and do things. I can’t speak thankfulness and gratitude in my prayers if I am worried about what is going to happen next. Worry is like a weed that is taking over my soul where I should have been letting gratitude blossom.

I had to pray for God to please fix my ungrateful heart and change my outlook from worried and stressed to thankful and forgiven.

Do you look at the gift of each new day as a burden before it even gets started? When was the last time you thanked God for your job instead of wishing you didn’t have one. Next time you get in your car to drive somewhere do you thank God for a running vehicle so that you don’t have to take the bus? Most of all do you thank God for your kiddos instead of complain that they never listen to you or yelling at them? Take time today to examine your heart. Is it a diseased ungrateful heart? If so take time to talk to God into changing your worries into gratitude.

Psalms 136:1 – Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.

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Are you Brave?

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I’m tired of being “brave”… Ever feel that way? I sure have and a lot more so lately!! Sometimes I would like to just stay in my pajama’s and cuddle up on the couch with my favorite blanket and whine and cry and take the brave face off for awhile. I think Lord, what is my gain from all of this? Nothing is making sense to me right now! Why can’t you just fix this and we can carry on with the life that I had all planned out!

As this was going through my head the thought crossed my mind… What if Jesus had taken off His brave face and took Himself off that cross. Where would we be then?

This morning our pastor’s message was pretty deep. The question that she asked us all is still laying heavy on my heart and is spoken over and over on my lips. Where are you? Life is disrupting, unexpected, inconvenient and never as planned. We get hit on all sides from illnesses, stress, family and so much more that we can easily take our eyes off of God and turn our attention to something else. It would have been so easy for me to be angry at God for having cancer. I could have turned my back on Him and went my own way. However just as our pastor said her GPS recalculates, so must our vision.

Cancer is a stumbling block that got in my way when I least expected it. I had to recalculate with God. Okay God, what now? Where are you leading me and what do I have to do to get through this? Sounds so easy doesn’t it… Can I be honest with you? Outside of the pain and the surgeries it truly has been easy. Am I frustrated at times, Am I scared at times? Absolutely!! But I can’t imagine doing this journey without God. I have Him to go to when I’m scared; I have Him to go to when I am frustrated and sick. He is holding me through this and yes I want to stop being brave some days, but I think about what He went through for me and I know that I have to be strong. I want to be like Jesus and follow in His footsteps.

When someone asked me, where are you? I want to tell them without a doubt I am exactly where God wants me to be! I want to say, it is well with my soul and never miss a beat! This past week was rough; I didn’t want to get out of bed most days. I didn’t even want to get out of bed and go to church this morning, but I did and I can’t take that for granted. As long as the good Lord gives me breath, I will use it to praise Him.

He has given us a new week, what are you going to do with it? Will you put on your brave face? Will you be ready to keep your eyes on Jesus, regardless of what life throws at you? Thank God for the life He has blessed you with.

1 Corinthians 16:13-14  Keep alert, be firm in your faith, stay brave and strong and show love in everything you do!

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How Beautiful are You?

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I walked out of my closet and stood in front of my full length mirror. It didn’t matter which angle I stood, I was not happy with what was looking back at me. The thoughts that filled my head were ones that were not positive in any way, shape or form.

My face is too fat.

Looking at myself with appraisal I began to list my faults.

My hair is still so thin.

My midsection is out of control.

My eyes look weird when I smile.

My nose is too round.

My neck too wide.

I can’t for the life of me hide this tube hanging out my side.

My skin is so pasty white.

 

During this speech to myself about what was wrong I heard that whisper,

I knew you before you were born.  I created your innermost being.  (Psalm 139)

 

I stopped what I was thinking and just stood there and the tears started to swell in my eyes.

Again.

A still small voice speaks again…You are my child.  (1 John 3:1)

I love you with an everlasting love.  (Jeremiah 31:3)

You are my workmanship. (Ephesians 2:10)

I have redeemed you.  (Ephesians 1:7)

You are beautiful.  (Psalm 45:11)

I chose you.  You are mine.  (Ephesians 1:4; Colossians 3:12; 1 Thessalonians 1:4)

You are no longer a slave.  (Galatians 4:7)

You are a new creation.  (2 Corinthians 5:17)

I look again in the mirror.  I look at my eyes.

I see them brimming with compassion.

I turn my head and see my ears…always ready to listen.

I glance down and see my hands…always ready to pitch in and help.

I look again at my face and see my mouth, one that is always ready to speak encouragement.

And I smiled at myself.

Slowly I see the beauty that God created me to be.

Do you ever feel like that? If you are a woman I can almost guarantee that you have felt like that at least one time in your life. Having cancer has made me feel like one very unattractive person. I find myself spending a lot of time in our closet staring at my clothes and wishing I felt comfortable in at least one outfit that didn’t include something in the PJ department. I find myself spending a little extra time on my makeup and my hair so I would feel a little pretty for the day.

I haven’t had the energy to do much so I am packing on the extra pounds that I definitely don’t need because I have been sitting around. When I look in that mirror it almost brings me to tears sometimes to see that person looking back at me.

Some things are out of my control right now and I have to learn to let go and allow God to show me the beauty in myself. Although very important to us, God doesn’t look on the outward appearance, He looks at the heart. I pray dear God, create in me a clean heart, one that doesn’t look at myself and see ugliness, one that is willing to help others and encourage others. A heart that is willing to give and not downgrade what you have made beautiful.

I sat on my bed and thanked God for making me a beautiful person on the inside. I thank Him for making me in His image. This cancer may look ugly now, but He is making something beautiful out of this mess and I long for the day when I can finally see that beauty not only on the inside, but also on the outside.

Do you know you are beautiful? Regardless what you think of yourself, God has made you amazingly beautiful! You can work hard to make yourself look really good on the outside, but if your heart isn’t clean then your beauty is only skin deep. Ask God to cleanse your heart and invite Him to come in and make you beautiful on the inside!

1 Samuel 16:7 …  For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart

 

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Open Wound or Scar?

hurt

I rolled my jeans up and styled my hair like I had just walked out of the 50’s era. It was Mom and Dad’s 25th wedding anniversary and we were throwing them a surprise party and the theme was for everyone to dress like we were in the 50’s and 60’s. I felt a little “off” that night, but chalked it up to “female” problems and continued to help set up the community hall for the surprise. Mom and Dad came in and were so surprised and we started what was a wonderful night of family and friends celebrating our parents.

About 2 hours into the party I felt like someone had stabbed my side and I ran into the bathroom and started throwing up. When I was done I made it as far as the kitchen and slumped down on the floor leaning up against a cabinet. Mom came in to wash her hands and found me and rushed over to me and ask me if I was ok. I starting crying and said, Mom my side hurts so bad. She felt my side and I screamed in pain and the sweat just rolled off of me. Dad took me to the hospital after all the excitement had worn down at the party. By that time I was just crying and felt as though I was on my last leg. After exams I was rushed to the OR where they found out that not only had my appendix ruptured but I have a cyst on my ovary the size of a grapefruit that had ruptured as well. I left the hospital a few days later with a fresh new 8 inch scar on my side to represent all I had been through.

When I think back to that time, what seemed so traumatic at the time is now just a memory and when I look at my scar now and many other scars on my body I see proof of healing.

I have always looked at my life as pretty easy going. I had 2 amazing parents that loved each other so much. They raised all of us kids with so much love and taught us respect and discipline. We lived in a great house with loads of acres and went to a great church. We were blessed to go to a private school for a bit then went to public school when we were in high school. We didn’t have the best of everything, but we were never without. I was told one time that “There will come a time in your life when it comes down to just you and God.”

I didn’t know how to take that statement at the time. As I stated above that life was good, I went to church and tried to live as a good Christian girl was expected to live. (For the most part)… I forgot about that statement until a few months ago when I was sitting on the floor of our closet crying my eyes out over the pain of finding out I had cancer. I realized that it had finally come down to just me and God. I looked at my broken down body. My heart felt raw like a huge open wound and I was so scared as I thought, how am I going to fix this? Sitting in that closet I knew that I had to let God deal with me. I couldn’t hold onto the anger I felt from hearing that I had cancer. I felt that anger when Mom passed. I knew that if I didn’t give it to God that it would fester and get bigger and take over areas of my life.

Living with anger can affect relationships, daily habits, my work, my kids… every area. Like a wound left untreated, it becomes infected and spreads. However when we let God take control those wounds turn into scars that are proof of our healing.

I’ve decided that scars are beautiful. I know mine is.

It’s my proof and reminder that it came down to just God and me, and God made beauty from ashes.

It’s my proof and reminder that I need Him every second of every day

What do your scars look like? Do you have visible scars or ones that are scarred on your heart? God can take those open ugly wounds and turn them into beautiful scars. Give it to God tonight!

Psalms 51:10  Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

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