Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;... Psalm 23:4a
As a breast cancer survivor, there is not a day that doesn't go by when I do not think about recurrence. From talking with other survivors, I know I am not alone. Cancer is sneaky. One day everything is going along just like it always does and you feel the lump, get the phone call or as in my case, read it in a report online. Suddenly your world spins wildly out of control and there is not much anyone can do to stop it. Oh, the medical world will try but in the end, even if they say they got it all out, no one knows if it is still lurking in the shadows lying in wait for you. This is the reality of being a cancer survivor.
Nearly two years to the date of my "cancerversary", I went to sleep not knowing there was a time bomb about to go off inside my head. I had an aneurysm in my brain which was about to rupture. It did, shortly before midnight on December 10, 2009. I have a few fragments of memory of the next seven days.
There are a lot of people walking around with brain aneurysms and they don't even know it. The problem occurs if it ruptures. The statistics I was quoted at the hospital were one-third of the patients do not make it to the hospital and one-third die within 30 days. More than half of those who survive require at least some physical therapy and many can no longer work. I was one of the minority. I was released from the hospital less than two weeks after it occurred and returned to work after only six weeks. There was no permanent brain damage and after testing me at the hospital, it was determined that I needed no physical therapy whatsoever.
They have done countless brain scans on me and I am told there are no more brain aneurysms. They tell me I have nothing more to worry about but the other night after I went to bed, I found myself in tears remembering and wondering how they can be so sure it will never happen again.
There are going to be days and nights like this when I will wonder. I will wonder if the cancer will come back and if it does, can it be stopped? I will wonder if there is a not yet detectable time bomb in my head. I could pretend I don't wonder but that would simply be a lie. I wonder.
That is when I remember these precious words taken from the 23rd Psalm:
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;... Psalm 23:4aThat is when I remember these words I posted over my piano right before I started chemo.
That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won't last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don't look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever. 2 Cor. 4:16-18 (NLT)That is when I remember these precious words I repeated over and over again on the worst night I had during chemo. The night when I screamed and cried in agony as damaged nerves in my legs misfired... and there was nothing that could be done about it.
You O Lord, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light. Psalm 18:28 (NIV)And He did...even in the Valley of the Shadow of Death.
Sunrise From Victor Rock Image Credit: Oregon State University Archives
The things we face in life can be so unbearable and frightening
But when we fix our eyes on Jesus.. something changes..
Well.., the situation hasn't changed yet, we still need to face what we gotta face...
But our hearts that were ones filled with fear
are now filled with assurance, security and peace.. All Because of GOD.
The tears would still fall
But no longer because we're afraid
Instead, it's because.. we are comforted in knowing that we're not alone and that the GOD of the Universe is by our side.
Thanks for sharing this. I love the picture!
I'll keep those verses in my mind and in my heart!
GOD bless you!
[quote]Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;... Psalm 23:4a[/quote]
Amen! A shadow never hurt anyone, it is the fear that does the damage and fear does not come from God but from the enemy. All praise to God for his faithfulness.
I hope that when you write your first book on the everlasting grace and mercy of God that I may have your autograph. If there ever was a living breathing epistle I have known in this life to all the goodness and love of God it has to be you.
I don't know of anyone who would go through all you have the past few years who would continue to live and give the way you do. Thank you for not being afraid of that valley and against all odds, rising up and helping us all see a little better what it means to walk in God's light.
Thanks once again K for a wonderful testimony and teaching that all can take from and apply somewhere in our lives. Your life is like a sign on the side of a road that has dangerous curves and that sign has but an arrow on it...pointing the way to safety!!!
Such a blessing as always,