Monday, October 15, 2012

No Secret Handshake Needed

I find deep rooted hope in the promise that God uses all things for the good of those who love him. He uses even cancer for our good. A friend of mine shared that her journey with breast cancer totally sucks but that she sees how it has been used for good, that it woke her up out of a downward spiral revealing ways she had been destroying her life. Her humility is beautiful and so is she. The darkest, most painful parts of our lives often have the most opportunity for freedom and light. It's in the dull days of normalcy we often miss the hand of God.

My dad recently brought a little humor to the reality of cancer...sometimes humor, even a little dark, cancer humor, helps us cope. He said that Esther was going to have to teach him the secret handshake. About a month ago my dad had a sinus surgery to clean out his passages and remove his adenoids. One of his adenoids looked a little funny so the ENT doc sent it for pathology. The results came back about a week and a half ago that the funny adenoid was actually a malignant tumor called nasopharyngeal. It is more common in place like China, but it seems like it is becoming more common here. Some of the risk factors are lots of exposure to saw dust, working the belly of a ship (my dad was in the Navy), being an auto mechanic and exposure to paint fumes from painting cars.

Last Thursday he met with an oncologist to learn more about the tumor and possible treatment plans. Tomorrow (Tuesday) he will have a PET scan to determine if the cancer has spread. Please pray the scan would reveal no metastases. This week will be a big week for him with imaging, a meeting with his doctors on Wednesday and Thursday he'll have a feeding tube placed into his stomach because radiation is standard protocol and radiation to the face makes eating and drinking difficult. This will be a difficult journey for him and my mom.

Would you please remember them along with Esther? My dad is Larry and my mom is Tracie. Pray for my dad to be healed and that they would see good, hope, and peace in the midst of such a trial.

While my dad joked that Esther needed to teach him a secret handshake, I think there is some truth to it. If only we could all brave illness, loss, pain and tragedy with such grace. Kids don't live in despair. While there are moments of breakdown, little children live in trust and hope. They don't really know much different.

The same hope and trust is available to all of us. There is no secret handshake for entrance into the goodness of God's love. It is offered, freely, readily, to each and every matter who you are, what you've done or not done. God's mercies are new every morning and He bids us to come. Come now, little one. I love you, I want fellowship with you, I will make all things new. Jesus alone brings the peace, the hope for each of our daily needs.

If you aren't sure where you stand with Jesus, read this. If you have a secure relationship with Christ, read it. You will be renewed and encouraged in the love of God, your Father. I hope it helps you understand more about this God who loves you, intensely. If you read this and are stirred to admit your need for a Savior...we all have need, you simply tell Jesus that you need Him. That you have sinned and desire His forgiveness and for Him to the be the Lord of your life. I remember another parent sharing about their little boy once asking God to "be the boss of me." I like this simple understanding, filled with truth. God is a good boss to follow. He will no, not, never leave us, never forsake us. There is no other person who could ever make such a promise and no other person who could ever give us the hope, peace, and courage to carry us through the trials of this life.



  1. Oh my, I'll add your mama and daddy to my prayers too. (((HUGS))) as you jump on for another loop around the roller coaster.

  2. Thank you for this beautiful message! I would like to tell you that your blogs have helped me realize that I need to come back to have shared so many inspiring passages and you have also demonstrated the faith that I need to have in my own life despite the trials and tribulations.

    Your family has been in my prayers and will continue to be...

  3. Thanj you for sharing this, I think I needed this reminder today. I will pray for your parents as well as Esther everyday.

  4. We do not kow each other but we have a mutual friend. I have been praying for you, Ester and the rest of your family. You have such a great outlook on life through all of your trials and tribulations. I know it has not been easy but your faith in God has touched so many lives that you do not know! Please keep fighting, praying, and writing. May God lay his hands upon all of you! Thank you for all of your encouraging words.

    Bless you,
    A friend on the street

  5. We will start praying for you parents as well. Please let me know if you need a place to stay down here - I know that you have been spending a lot of time with your parents. If that option is not always available from here on out - we are always happy to host any of you.


  6. wow what a trail. that is all i can think of that is a lot of health crisis to be going through. We will add prayers for your dad and mom. I hope the meetings and test turn out good. Too bad they aren't in the same onc clinic you would have company on chemo days. ;) Hope all is well once again. Low count week is coming we are asking for no fevers and remember your washing! Loves cancer buddies.