Monday, March 10, 2014

My American Idol

Update on Eddie - Eddie has had minimal side effects from the chemo. He has an unpleasant rash on his face that is moving to his chest and is feeling tired which he's not used to. It's hard to know if the fatigue is a result of his body fighting off the cancer or the chemo. Probably both. Eddie started antibiotics to help with the rash and we are hopeful it will clear up soon. He continues to be upbeat, read, and closely follow the stock market. :) We are hopeful that this chemo will effectively treat Eddie's cancer and we are enormously thankful for your prayers for healing and for minimal side effects from the chemo!

Having Eddie home from the hospital, the curtailment of doctor appointments, and our house not imploding helped last week feel somewhat "normal". I was able to put in a full week at work and we resumed some of our routine activities. Since Eddie's diagnosis several weeks ago we've been working to get our finances in a position where I can support myself on one income. We are praying and hoping for the best and planning for the worst. While doing some research early Sunday morning Eddie read that only 15% of people with his type of cancer live for more than one year. Although the oncologist told us something similar when Eddie was initially diagnosed, hearing it again hit me like a tsunami and it felt like I was jolted back into the reality of our situation. Staying composed at church during the worship part of service was difficult and I lost my appetite for food after having regained it last week. Over the last several weeks I have become acutely aware of how inadequate my idol of self-reliance is. And of my sinful actions when any of my idols are threatened. This morning while reading Hebrews 4:15-16, I was reminded that Jesus can intimately sympathize with my weaknesses, emotions, and fears because He himself has experienced all of them and more. This doesn't minimize the pain I feel but it does bring me incredible comfort and strength to know that God Himself has experienced the anger, frustration, confusion, and sadness I feel in this present circumstance. And my idols being ripped away is a gift because I am given the blessing of joy as I trust God in spite of what I feel not only in this mammoth trial but also in the midst of those daily situations and annoyances that make me want to say words Jesus wouldn't. Ahem.

Psalm 16: 5, "Lord, You are my portion and my cup of blessing; You hold my future."

Asking Why?

"Trust in God, not explanations from God, is the pathway through suffering." Ray Ortlund I've been reminded of this truth often these past few weeks through the life of Job. This is a painful time for us that is truly filled with joy because although we don't understand why all this is happening the why isn't our focus. Our focus is on who God is and we know that He is hurting right along with us. And we find amazing hope in the promises found in Revelation 21. One day God will make all things right and there will be no more pain, loss, or tears! My heart just swells with gratitude to my loving Heavenly Father!