Sunday, December 09, 2007

God of Miracles & Thoughts

My friend Anna, who I've mentioned on here before, called me yesterday. She told me, "I'm here to say God is a God of miracles." Now, coming from her, that's what her very life is a testimony of. She has had cancer twice(Hodgkins Lymphoma Stage IV - cancer of the lymphatic system) by the time she was 21. She pursued many avenues of treatment. The first time low-dose chemo plus a miracle took it completely away. Yet within 2 years is was back. This time it took taking her immune system down to nothing (read: isolation & white blood count of zero) to harvest & transplant back her own stem cells. Years of fighting this, immense pain, praying, hoping, and hanging on... With the cancer gone the second time, the Lord brought a husband into her life (a longtime friend), Glenn. With Anna back to health, the lingering effect of the cancer on her was devastating: she was told her body had already gone through menopause and she would not produce any eggs normally for a pregnancy to ensue. She is one of 10 kids herself and loves children (spending months in Romania ministering to orphans). Yet she still prayed. She and I have prayed and cried many hours for one another in this common desire.

About a month ago, while being prayed over, God gave her a specific child to pray for - Faith Joy. So she did. And within this time-frame, God has poured out His love for her and Glenn and given them this longed-for pregnancy! God is a miracle-worker. She is evidence of that in numerous ways! And so we rejoice with her for this! She has been my prayer-target, when I've felt hopelessly burdened with my load, I have cried out for her, as I did for my friend Lis. And God has answered both those cries. I guess I need a new prayer-target now. Yes.

So though it's not me, God has shown a miracle this day. And as part of my family, I rejoice for my sister Anna and God's working!!

Aside from that, I have been thinking. Not long ago, someone posted about a charming little tradition of writing out the year's events on an ornament to hang. My frist thought, though, was about how that tradition is only quaint when the years have been blissful. I quickly figured 2007 could say: "IVF, Dead Baby, Granddaddy's Altzhimers, 'Unspoken Devastation', Step-Grandmother's Cancer/Stroke". I was glad we'd never had such a tradition. And then, realizing it could say much worse, I made a point to think it could also say: "GA move, Buying Our First House, Stuart's college graduation, Michael/Carter's HS graduation, Fred courting Mary, Achieving Pregnancy, Bahamas Cruise, 7 yrs at my incredible job, 3 yrs of marriage, 34 yrs of marriage for Dad&Mom, Suzanne's Great Semester at PCC, 2 beautiful healthy-nieces...etc"

My point? Though there are some serious things that have been unbelievably painful this year, there have been many more things to praise the Lord for. So even through the blinding-tears I have right now, I will praise the Lord for the "blessings" and the heart-wrenchingly painful times, because He Loves Us. That's a truth no event changes.

(P.S. I remain very scared of posting either my peaks or pitfalls. I am afraid if I post too much of my pain that I'll be ignored and thought faithless, childish, and ungrateful. I am afraid if I post of the encouragement I receive in my spirit, everyone will breathe a sigh of relief that I'm finally all right and have "gotten over" it. I know there's a balance, I've yet to find it. Thank you unspeakably Juli,Karen,Lisi&Susi for the emails/comments. Responses soon.)


Rebecca Swan said...

Thank you, Denise, for your honesty in the P.S. part of your post. The important thing is, though, to remain honest, realizing that the people who are reading this blog love you so much! We want to know how you are honestly doing, even if we can't say we know how it feels. So thank you, for letting us into a window of your soul in these posts, as you are walking through this slow journey. I love you, my friend. May God speak unique comfort and grace, even amidst a hard year. I love you!

JJandFive said...

I agree with Reba, Denise. Seems like every time I have heard you acknowledge the difficulty of this season you have also proclaimed grace! I think of Paul, and the trials he went through... I am so grateful it is written in the Word of God.
God is faithful. We look with anticipation on His future plans with you. Continue to share honestly. We want to pray for you specifically...
Also, excellent job looking at the much good in your life right now. His mercies are new every morning. Read Psalm 77, a fabulous encouragement to remember past grace...

Lindsay said...

Yes Denise, this is your blog! You write about what God places on your heart, pain included! We are all humbled as we see you walk this difficult road. We all face trials and it would be so neat to see that other people grieve the same way we do, or different, but God made each one of us so unique. I see people pulling up your blog next time they are in a fiery trial and they are being ministered to!! Much grace to you!!

Jeanie said...

Hi Denise-

I am not keeping up with blogs as well these past few weeks. Its great to read an update. Thanks for being so faithful to share your true emotions! I admire that about you. Also, I was very moved by your amazing perspective on life, and how you are praising the Lord despite your pain. What a wonderful example!! I have something I'd like to mail you (more than just a Christmas card :) Could you e-mail me your address??

Thanks! Love you!!

Ellen said...

Hey. I've been thinking about you this Christmas. I hope that you found some joy in it, but I'm sure it was really hard. I'll be praying for you. Hang in there.

Wagener family fun said...

I found your blog through a friend of mine. I enjoy reading other ladies blogs and seeing the work of God through their lives. I read your blog about your miscarriage and I have been in prayer for you since.
This past week I had the privelege to work with a precious young lady who had a picture of her ultra sound taped to her computer monitor. I stoped to admire the picture and inquired on how she was doing. She went on to explain that her baby would have been due in February but she miscarried. She hung her head in sadness and then I shared your story with her. Her head began to rise as I continued in conversation about what you had been through and your openess in sharing your pain and trial with others through your blog.
For the last two days that I worked with her she seemed so much happier and on my last day at her office she thanked me for sharing your story with her. She truly felt the presence of God and peace now that she had been longing for. To know that she wasn't alone and that it was alright to talk about her pain.
I now want to thank you for sharing your story. Your story has allowed another young lady to feel the presence of our soverign Lord in her life. To know that she is not alone and that it is alright to talk about her baby who is now with our Lord and savior.
May God continue to bless you and your husband. You will continually be in my prayers.

Herb of Grace said...

Denise, the comment above is a perfect example of what the Scripture calls "comforting others with the comfort with which you have been comforted" Praise God that your honesty is touching others in your situation in an (God willing) ever-widening circle. It is not in vain that He has put these hard things into your life. And the story is not done yet-- the work that He has begun in you, He will be faithful to complete it. Praise His name!