Our Unexpected Journey

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Floyd's week has been "steady" - no big ups or downs.  He's had some sweet visits with different ones of the carers.  One of them found out that over the Christmas season there was a 3 man brass band that came and played carols to the patients.  I hadn't heard about that.  I thought that was so special!  It reminded me of when I was a teenager and I used to go sing in the old age homes and in the hospital.  It touched me that someone was blessing Floyd in a similar way.

In recent days I have had lots of decisions to make.  It's been a bit daunting.  I've been asking the Lord for wisdom, counsel, and direction. The Lord has been reminding me, in a number of ways, of His love for me and that He is watching over me.  It has been sweet, affirming, encouraging - and has really strengthened my heart for what is ahead.

I was talking to the Lord about all this one morning and reflecting on things He had been saying to me when I went to prepare my breakfast.  As I opened a container of blackberries - right on top I found a very special one!!  I have posted the photo of it above.  It was a special unexpected little "kiss" from the Lord to my heart. :)  The Lord knows how much little things like this bless me!

One of the things the Lord has been saying to me is that He is at work in my life.  That He's mindful of every detail.  That He is doing things that I'm not aware of.  Someone sent me a quote from John Piper that affirmed that.  "God is always doing 10,000 things in your life and you may be aware of 3 of them."  Pretty amazing when you think about it - and I'm sure there's so much truth in that.

God doesn't waste any detail in our lives.  He is such an awesome creative God that He is working in every aspect of our lives at the same time.  No matter what I'm walking through - be it a good time or a hard time; be it for a day or for months, even years - He is with me.  I can relax and rest in His love and care.

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose."  Romans 8:28

"Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin?  And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father's will.  But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.  Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows."  Matthew 10:29-31

"Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it."  Philippians 1:6

"If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him."  James 1:5

"The Lord directs the steps of the godly.  He delights in every detail of their lives."  Psalm 37:23

When we love someone - our husband/wife, our children, our mother/father, our siblings, our friends - we care about the details of their lives.  We want to be involved in the details.  How much more then does our heavenly Father, who Himself IS love (1 John 4:8), care about us and the details of our lives?!

It gives me such a sense of security to know that the God of details is watching over my life......even bringing a special blackberry into my day. :)

My surgery has been moved back a few days to first thing Tues. morning, Jan. 29th. 

In an appointment with one of my doctors this week, he explained that there are 3 things that are essential for a person going through cancer treatment:

- that the person is involved in their own care decisions

- that the person has hope

- that the person has a good support system

I actually think those are good things for a lot of situations in life!  I was able to tick all the boxes!

He was asking if I had good support as I battle cancer.  I told him "yes!"  I have friends here and people all over the world praying for me.  What a treasure that is!  I realized how blessed I am to not be walking through this battle all alone.  Iā€™m so grateful to all those that have faithfully stood with me in the place of prayer.  It gives me a sweet security going into this new surgery to know that I will be "covered" in prayer. 

I have moments of feeling strong and ready for this - and moments of feeling great dread that I am facing yet another surgery.  I guess that's probably normal.  It certainly keeps me close to the Lord as I call out to Him continually!

I recently heard about a mother who has gone through challenging situations with her child.  Many of the challenges have been in the public eye, so she was asked how she coped with this.

She said that she has 3 keys for how to make it through the challenges:  stay in His presence, stand on His word, and rejoice!  I think that's a winning formula for walking through trials.  God has guided me that way over and over.  I'm choosing to use those "keys" in all that I'm facing at the moment.

Staying in His presence keeps us in a safe place regardless of what we are going through.  Standing on His word reminds us of His promises to us when we go through rough times.  And rejoicing, worship, bathes us with fresh grace for the challenges.  Whenever I'm finding it hard - be it dread, anxiety, feeling overwhelmed, needing wisdom, feeling weak.....whatever the situation is - as I worship Him it breaks the "hold" of any of those things that try to weigh my heart down.  Worship is so powerful!  I heard someone say, "When we worship, the invisible God is at work doing invisible and powerful things."  I've said before that I think it's one of the spiritual tools that God has placed in our hands.  We just need to make sure we use it!

Staying in His presence:

"Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim you, who walk in the light of your presence, O Lord.  They rejoice in your name all day long."  Psalm 89:15,16

"For in Him we live and move and have our being."  Acts 17:28

"I have set the Lord always before me.  Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken."  Psalm 16:8

Standing on His word:

"Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who has promised is faithful."  Hebrews 10:23

"He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless.  Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion.  But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength.  They will soar high on wings like eagles.  They will run and not grow weary.  They will walk and not faint."  Isaiah 40:29-31

" 'For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord.  'They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.' "  Jeremiah 29:11

Rejoicing/Worship:

"Because Your love is better than life, I will praise you.  I will praise You as long as I live.  I will lift up my hands in prayer to Your name.  Because You are my helper; I sing for joy in the shadow of Your wings.  I cling to You; Your strong right hand holds me securely."  Psalm 63:3,4,7,8

"I honor You and praise You because You have done amazing things.  You have always done what you said you would do."  Isaiah 25:1 

"Shout with joy to the Lord, all the earth!  Worship the Lord with gladness.  Come before Him, singing with joy.  Acknowledge that the Lord is God!  He has made us, and we are His.  We are His people, the sheep of His pasture.  Enter His gates with thanksgiving; go into His courts with praise.  Give thanks to Him and praise His name.  For the Lord is good.  His unfailing love continues forever, and His faithfulness continues to each generation."  Psalm 100

His presence, His word, and worship to Him are definitely "keys" to get us through whatever we may face.  How awesome He is to help us along life's journey!