(Previously published December 15, 2010)
Last week, December 8th to be exact, door #3 of treatment stood before me.
The door read: RADIATION
No sooner had chemo ended one week before, and here we were traveling quickly to the next phase of treatment.
I wasn't really ready. I just wanted to stand still for a bit and rest. Wait. Savor the moments of chemo being over and bit by bit my body returning to normal.
But the door stood there ajar. Waiting for me to cross the threshold.
9:00AM, consultation with Dr. S.
Months prior, Barclay and I had met with two different Radiation Oncologists. We heard all the statistics. Why radiation was needed for my cancer. You see, when the mastectomy was done back in July, I had two positive lymph nodes that held cancer and In situ cancer (DCIS) was found .3mm from my chest wall. It was the chest wall issue that caused the doctor's concern and necessitated my need for radiation.
So we prayed. We sought the Lord on this matter, asking Him to show us His way. To bring all into agreement, if this is what we were to do.
We had talked to two other Radiation Oncologists, my Integrative doctor and my Medical Oncologist. All agreed.
And whereas, I really didn't want to proceed down this passageway.....I knew that is where my feet needed to travel.
But I was uneasy about my doctor. We hadn't met yet and it was so important for me to click with her. To feel comfortable in her hands. I knew she was well respected, but also knew that I didn't want to be a numbers and figures on a chart, as I had felt when meeting other doctors. I need my doctors to see me as a woman, with a family facing a disease. So far, God has given that to me, and more.
Wednesday morning came, as the dates on the calendars always do. I awoke early and spent some time in prayer and reading my Bible. I knew this morning, I needed protection...God's protection and His divine Truths to wash over me calming my restless heart. Refocusing my attention on Him and off the hours that laid ahead.
I am constantly aware that without Him I am weak and misguided. That left to myself, I am without peace and direction. Without strength. Without hope.
He is my everything. And He has the answers that I don't have. He calms the storm that begins rising within me.
"And Peter answered Him and said, 'Lord, if it is You, command me to come to you on the water.' So He said, "Come." And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. But when he saw that the wind was boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, 'Lord, save me!' And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him...." Matthew 14:28-31
My eyes need to be fixed on Him....everyday. Every hour. Every minute.
And so that morning, I fixed my eyes on Him. Seeking His shelter and His peace.
He is faithful leading me in His Word to exactly what I needed to hear deep in my heart.
He lead me to Psalm 108.
And I read....
"I will praise You, O Lord, among the peoples, And I will sing your praises to You among the nations.....that Your beloved may be delivered, save with Your right hand, and hear me.....Give us (me) help from trouble, For the help of man is useless. Through God we (I) will do valiantly, For it is He who shall tread down our (my) enemies."
He again showed me that He is fighting this enemy....cancer. He is my help. He is my deliverer. Through Him I will do mighty things.....and He will take down this enemy. His way, in His time. All I need to do is stand strong in Him, each and every day and wait on the Lord.
I know I sound like a broken record.....but really....in God is victory and strength. He takes down strongholds and parts the sea. He takes down the giants and desires us to live abundantly in Him.
So I choose Him over everything else.
I stood confident in Him as I walked through the Radiation door.
And He showed Himself strong.
From the receptionist, to the nurse to the Radiation Oncologist......more than I could have asked for.
They were all lovely. They were gentle with me. They were kind. They made me laugh. And the conversation with Dr. S wasn't focused on statistics and percentages of recurrence. She focused on me. Where I began, where I had gone these last 8 months, and why we were seated in front of her that day. And whereas she agreed, that radiation is needed, she ended with saying...."Stacy, ultimately you can choose if this is what is best for you."
No forcing. No medical muscles flexed to intimidate.
And isn't that what everything comes down to....choices. Will we chose Him? Will we walk in His love and His strength? Will be rest in His peace?
That morning as I chose to start with Him. Stay with Him and be lead by Him.....He held me tightly.
And so we walk through this door....Beginning in January, I will go through 28 days of radiation therapy. 5 days a week. Targeting my right side from my clavicle to just under my rib cage.
Until then, I have appointments to set up the specs for my radiation. A custom mold made of me for the radiation table. Imaging to target the radiation in the right spots. And then on we go...ready.
And so, with peace and confidence in God alone, I walk through the next door trusting that God has gone before me.
And as I walk this cancer journey, I am learning more and more that rest is not the absence of trials and difficulty.....rest is the presence of God.
Are you resting in Him today, no matter where He has you?