Monday, April 5, 2010

Monday, April 5, 2010: In Christ Alone

Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 peter 5:8

Last week the enemy was running circles around me. It all started on Thursday when I managed to break the faucet off of the kitchen sink. Later that day we discovered a hundred thousand jillion billion ants crawling around in the rocks next to our house. Okay so maybe there wasn’t that many but there was a lot! I thought I would take a video of this with my phone to send to Brian. While doing this I managed to drop my cell phone in the rocks and it cracked the screen. This was my brand new cell phone that I had upgraded to just three weeks ago.

Busted sink, ant invasion and broken cell phone – three strikes – I’m out. I was mentally and physically tired at this point. We had a few busy days planned and I tried to take control of these plans and work it all out on my own – not good – you would think I would have learned that lesson by now.

I struggle with self-esteem issues and was at an all time low by this point (what kind of loser breaks the kitchen sink and cell phone in one day?!). I could feel a panic attack coming on and the verse about the devil prowling around like a lion came to my mind. Once I identified this I was able to gear my anger towards the enemy and decided I was not going to let him win this battle.

We had a busy day lined up for Easter and I was actually thinking that we shouldn’t go to church. I knew it would be very busy and I wasn’t in any frame of mind to deal with people. Thankfully my spiritual heart overcame my earthly mind and we did go to church. As we sang the song In Christ Alone these words hit me right between the eyes and brought so much comfort ~

No guilt in life ~ no fear in death ~

this is the power of Christ in me.
From life’s first cry to final breath ~

Jesus commands my destiny.

No power of hell - no scheme of man

can ever pluck me from His hand.

‘Til He returns or calls me home

here in the power of Christ I’ll stand.

This service renewed my faith, brought me comfort and helped me put my priorities back where they needed to be. Just one day prior to this I was overwhelmed with something as simple as the fact that I forgot to buy eggs. God knew I would need to deal with news that was much more difficult to grasp than the fact that we didn’t have eggs.

I had an appointment with Dr. Downey this morning. During my physical exam he felt a lump in my pelvis. He would like me to start back on Avastin again (which is a maintenance chemo – no major side effects). I have a ct scan scheduled tomorrow. He mentioned that my CA-125 was up but I reminded him that it had actually gone down a little bit. His response was that “it’s still quite high”. I was still feeling pretty confident at this point (and I still am) so I said “we’ve discussed this before – we both know that I am above average”.

The intern looked quite surprised and said “what a positive way to look at that”. Both of them had very sad looks on their faces – almost a mix of sorrow and pity. I didn’t go down that road with them though. The line “from life’s first cry to final breath ~ Jesus commands my destiny” kept going through my head.

For the past three years I have been fighting this battle determined to beat cancer. I assumed this was God’s will for me. Although it was awful hearing the words “not more than five years” a few months ago it did help me wrestle through some issues. I gave up control of my life, my plans, my family, and my children. That was no easy task but the peace I felt when I opened my tightly grasped fists was such a relief.

I don’t know what God’s will is for my life but I know He controls my destiny and am again reminded of the last line from In Christ Alone . . . ‘til He returns or calls me home here in the power of Christ I’ll stand. That is the only thing that will get us through this journey – the power of Christ.

But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:9-10