"It is He who reveals the profound and hidden things; He knows what is in the darkness, and the light dwells with Him." -Daniel 2:22
"Do not fear, for I am with you..." -Isaiah 43:5
"...we are not presenting our supplications before You on account of any merits of our own, but on account of Your great compassion." -Daniel 9:18

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Refreshing Rain

Many look at all the rain we have had the past few weeks as refreshing, some are done with it and ready to move on. Others would love it - if it never rained. That is how people are about trials, tests and tribulation. Many would love to never experience anything bad. But then they are the ones with no root system. They have not allowed themselves to see the rain (hard times) as a blessing and soaked up all the goodness from it.
I am not, by any stretch of the imagination, to the point of asking for more trials. But, God has taught me to look for the good in a bad situation. Through His Word and the Old Testiment and New Testiment stories.
I have not been able to study His Word as much these past few months, since going to work, as I did in the past few years. I am so thankful He made me realize the need for intense study when my last job ended, over 2 years ago. Even before Al was diagnosised, I felt I needed to really soak up some truths from Him. I hope to become more disiplined to find the time to get back to that kind of study soon. I miss it. It caused me to grow so fast and deep. It seemed almost every day for 2 years I would have a WOW! or AHA! or YES! moment with God.
That growth, I hope, is what others see when they look at me. The calm reassurance of knowing that God has got our backs. Whatever it seems to be might not be what is....whatever happens (mostly) is not within our power to control..... Our job is to do the dishes, go to work, study His Word and Obey. Studying His Word is how we learn to obey.
I thank our Lord for the rain in our lives. That He has shown us how to continue on through the rain and even find joy in the midst of it.
I confess that I do not spend much time worrying about the future. Some, but not much. During that first year of Al's illness, we did do a lot of thinking about it, but in a good way. Trying to prepare as best we could. Making wills. Deciding what we would do about this or that. There are still many things to do and plan, but for now, God has given us peace. I dare not spend much time in the future or I would not be able to function in the now.
I lean heavily on my Heavenly Father to get me through each day. I talk to him at work instead when I want to scream at someone. I talk to him at home when I want to scream at someone. I give him my frustrations because they are inappropriate in my life now.
As most of you know, Al spent a week in the hospital last week. He had pneumonia. He was probably okay after about 3 or 4 days, but they don't see many cancer patients here in Waxahachie, so they kept him for 7 days. They didn't really want to let him go home then, but he told them he was leaving!
The main thing that scared them, I think, were that his blood counts were so low. But that is just the way a cancer patient has to live. They gave him blood and stuff, but the effects only lasted a couple of days. By the time he went to his oncologist in Dallas on Monday, they were back down again.
He had his monthly chemo (Cytoxan) last Monday. Didn't feel great for a few days, but is coming around. They say they are going to change his type of chemo again soon. Please pray that it will not have bad side effects and that it will continue to keep his protein levels (cancer cells) low.
In the mean time, we are going to try to do better about being out in public so much. Especially during the flu season. So we will probably not be back to church. I resigned from nursery duty, as the babies carry so many germs. Al resigned from the deacon board because he has not been able to fulfill his duties these past few years. He hoped to be able to get back involved, but it just doesn't seem like that is God's plan. I pray God would show him how to minister to people through prayer and phone calls and whatever ways he can.
We have begun the paperwork to build a house not far from where the farm is. Pray that that process would go smoothly. I want a place where Al will be comfortable and have the room to enjoy these next 20 years!
I am very thankful that God gave me such an optimistic personality. (Some may call it naivety or stupidity) It helps to look for the good in all situations. But then, maybe it is not my personality, but God in me that is so optimistic............
I love hearing from each of you and enjoy lifing up your concerns to God through prayer. If you have issues that are troubling you, let me know. Al and I would love to pray for you. I have been praying for the son of a good friend who emailed me last week. I have been praying for the husband of a friend who also has cancer. I have been praying for a very dear friend who just lost his sister suddenly. I have been praying for a cousin who lost her only son in an accident. I have been praying for a brother-in-law who is needing a heart transplant.
We have been and continue to be so grateful for all the prayers for us. They best gift we can give is to return the favor and lift you up.

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