There is no answer to the ‘Why?’ of my cancer journey.
Well, there is, but it would not satisfy the centuries’ old question of ‘Why did this happen to me?’ and it definitely would not satisfy your expectations of your own ‘Why did this happen to me?’.
There are 3 lessons that I have learned though and each lesson is dependent on the previous lesson:
Draw near to God.
You cannot get through any trial or tribulation by yourself. You have to find hope somewhere. Many look to the wisdom and courage of others’ struggles. Many look to themselves. But ultimately, each and every one of us will fail simply because there is no perfect foundation on this earth that is unmovable, unshakable, enduring, and strong enough to withstand any and all things. The hope that you want to find is what will become your anchor. It will become what you believe in. It will become your faith. Without that faith, you will not survive and if your faith is founded on that which is imperfect, then how will it survive?
How will you survive?
My faith must be anchored in the only thing that is all-powerful, all-knowing, all-present, and unchangeable and that anchor MUST be my Creator. As I endured some of the darkest days of my life, I had to draw closer, nearer to the One who understood perfectly, the One who is perfect, the One who created me. There were moments in the wee hours of the night, as I wept silently, pleading for comfort, for assurance, for strength, that He gathered me in His mercy and grace and loved me with His perfect, everlasting love. And as I continued to draw closer to Him, He taught me the next lesson:
He is my ALL.
This is the hardest lesson to learn for I am continuing to learn it. Football Fan was my 24/7 caregiver. Next to him, Camo Kid and Princess Pink were my 24/7 caregivers. You cannot imagine what that means until you have been someone’s 24/7 caregiver. I have had people pray for me, provide meals for me, and a multitude of other beneficial and meaningful ways of ministering to me during my journey, but ultimately, it was my blessed little family who were there at the highest and lowest points of my illness. Nobody else was there 24/7. We have been blessed to be ministered to by complete strangers and we have been devastated to lose the relationships of those we counted very dear to us during this journey.
And yet, even with the 24/7 care and compassion of my blessed little family, they could not be my ALL. My Creator urged me to draw closer to Him so that He could show me that no matter what, I am never alone, that I would never be alone. In those darkest days, as I became a recluse because of my illness, as I watched and heard of the activities of my family, my friends, of strangers and as I longed to be part of the world, He never left me. He became my ALL: my confidant, my confessor, my comfort, my joy, my peace, my God. My relationship with Him changed from Him being The God of All Things to being My God of Everything. His grace became sufficient so that I could bear the tremendous loss of so much because His grace IS sufficient. And as I learned that He is and must always be my ALL, He taught me the final lesson:
Point you to Him.
What is it that you are seeking? What is it that you are hoping for? Don’t look to the wisdom and courage of others. Don’t look to yourselves. Look to Him. It doesn’t even matter if you believe in Him or not. It doesn’t matter if you understand Him or not. Just look to Him…
You see, He loves you.
He has loved you forever.
We all want to be loved. We are all looking for love. And He is waiting, patiently for you to look to Him: to understand what true love is and what true love feels like. You turn your face to the Sun on a bright beautiful day and you feel the warmth of its rays. Turn your face to the God who created you and feel the perfect love that can only come from Him. You can only want to draw closer to that perfect love and it is only then that you will begin to understand that He is your ALL…
And then you will point others to Him.
And they will want to draw closer to Him…
And learn that He is their ALL.
And tell others…