Feb 21: Almost A Week Into Treatments

We are almost a week into my wife’s treatments. I praise God that they are going well. Amy is tired a little more after her treatments now. The drive to and from the hospital is what takes longer each day than the actual treatments.

The waiting room for radiation treatments

The ladies on the oncology team that greets Amy every day got her a birthday cake and wished her a happy birthday yesterday. Yesterday was her birthday along with her paternal brother. They are twins. She is 43 whoooohooooo! I am so thankful for that.

I can’t help but see every day the sheer number of people that usher into the nine-story parking garage that is packed full with cars by 10am in the morning. There are so many people hurting. It seems like most of these people are going to the cancer unit.

We as people cling to life! I am struck by how many people that are in the cancer unit in their 60’s, 70’s and older that are there for cancer treatments. They are clinging to life as we do. We want to live. The reality is that we want to live here and see our kids grow up, become adults, get married and have children. We want to live because we love being here on earth. When that reality is shattered with the diagnosis of cancer that is going to end your life early it may seem hopeless. I can’t help but think about how many of these people sitting in here that don’t have hope. Or where is there hope? Or what have they placed there hope in?
I admit the moment I first heard those words from the ER doctor that my wife had a brain tumor, I felt hopeless in that very moment. I felt that way because it was not what I wanted. I wanted to grow old with my wife, watch our kids get married and so on. I think that is what everyone wants when they first get married. But zooming back to that moment, wrapped in a bubble of the shock, yes, I admit I felt crushed. My wife felt crushed. It seems at that moment that it was the end of the road.

Why we can’t stop there!

In that bubble of a moment, it all seems hopeless. But we can’t stop there. Why can’t we stop there? We need hope. We need hope in order to survive. Without hope and life stops! Creativity stops!, effort stops! Loneliness is an ever-present problem that we face without hope. Now, I have to admit that when the doctors told us that it was very treatable that gave me hope that my wife would live. That encouraged me, but that is not what gives me the greatest hope. You see that is hope in mankind, which will always fail us. The hope that I am referring to is hope that only God can give.

Hope that doesn’t fail

Think about the apostles on day that he told them that he was going to leave them. They were anxious, maybe even a little hopeless because their hope (Jesus) was going to be leaving them. They were possibly feeling abandoned, alone, confused, powerless, concerned and unsure of what was going to happen next. Man, I get that feeling. I have felt all of those things. But it doesn’t end there. If it ended there the question I would have to ask is, “Why am I a Christian?” As a Christian, I profess my FAITH, hope, and trust in Jesus Christ that He is the Savior of the world. He is my savior, he give me hope.

C. S. Lewis, “A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else He would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon, or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronising nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.”

We Have Hope

During Jesus’ earthly ministry, He used this term “I Am” to describe His purpose and HIs relationship to us. He said, I am the Good Shepherd, I am the Gate, I am the door, I am the resurrection and the life, I am the light of the world, I am the bread of life, I am the Way the Truth and the Life.
When a person responds by faith to the good news of Jesus Christ, becoming a recipient of God’s amazing grace, life, destiny, and purposes change in your life. At the moment of salvation, Jesus comes into our life.
Galatians 2:20 ESV

20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
We are no longer alone! Our security, our dependency, and our identity now reside in our relationship with Christ. He is with us! This is why we have hope beyond this world. Whey we have hope beyond cancer, hope beyond death.

Now, Jesus reminded us in the Gospels that there is an enemy—and this enemy wants to take away our confidence in Jesus—who is with us.
John 10:10 ESV

10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
Because Jesus is with us we have life—abundant life! This is why I am saying that it can’t end at death. It can’t end there, because, without hope in Christ, we are hopeless. We are hopeless because we are only relying on our power to overcome. Our power to stay encouraged. Our power to stay hopeful in a disease ridden, sin cursed world that honestly is hopeless. Our hope is not in this world, but in Christ alone.

It is this hope that gives me the strength to cry when I need to cry. Our emotions are God-given and good. It’s okay as a man to cry when you are hurting, it’s not a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength that you need help. It is this hope that allows me to love my wife as deeply as I do. To love my children as deeply as I do.

Yes, I have bad days, today really sucked, but I still have hope. That may sound confusing. How can I have hope in a bad day or in a hopeless situation? I have hope that someday, I don’t know when all the things that Christ Jesus teaches me will come to fruition when I am in heaven with him. There is one inescapable truth that we all have to face. We are all going to die. The next question is, “What can we do about it?” I know that it is highly likely that my wife is going to die young, but I choose not to dwell there. I choose to rest in the hope that Christ promises to everyone that puts there trust in Him. That is that we will be free from the curse of Sin. We will be free of all disease, pain, suffering and know what it is to be in the arms of God in heaven. To know what pure unadulterated LOVE really is. And the fact that YES, I WILL SEE MY BRIDE IN HEAVEN!!! I am not saying it’ll be tomorrow, next month, next year or even 5 years from now. That is an unknown at this time, but I don’t want to know.

At this time, there is tremendous freedom in living one day at a time. God tells us not to worry about yesterday or tomorrow, only worry about today. What can I do today to love my wife, my children, my brothers and sisters in Christ and to be aware of the pain and suffering that people in this world are going through and love them too. So, after a very long post tonight, here is what I choose and my hope is that you choose it too.

I CHOOSE TO HOPE IN JESUS CHRIST AND HIS PROMISES SO THAT I’M NOT LONELY, NOT LACKING IN CREATIVITY, NOT LEFT IN DESPAIR. I CHOOSE JESUS CHRIST, BECAUSE HE SAVED ME AND I CAN GO TO HIM MESSY AND BROKEN AND BARE ALL AND KNOW THAT I AM COMFORTED BY HIM.

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fredt

I am the husband of my wife Amy for the 15+ years. Thankful to be a father to several wonderful children and humbly trying to live my life to glorify Christ as my Lord and Savior.

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