Sunday, February 10, 2008

Still Learning

One thing that keep coming up in this trial is how much I really have to trust God. In the beginning we read an article by John Piper called, "Don't waste your cancer." One of the points he made was that you will waste your cancer if you seek comfort from your odds rather than from God. He says, " The design of God in your cancer is not to train you in the rationalistic, human calculation of odds. The world gets comfort from their odds. Not Christians. Some count their chariots (percentages of survival) and some count their horses (side effects of treatment), but we trust in the name of the LORD our God (Psalm 20:7). God’s design is clear from 2 Corinthians 1:9, “We felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.” The aim of God in your cancer (among a thousand other good things) is to knock props out from under our hearts so that we rely utterly on him." That lesson had hit me again this weekend. Everyone has told us that David's cancer has a 90 to 95% cure rate which we like to hear. My dad has a 14% 5 year survival rate. Which we don't like to hear. Either way, it is tempting to listen to the rates whether good or bad. I tried to tell myself not to get too excited about David's 90% rate because God is still soverign, and in reality it really doesn't mean a whole lot. I do have to say that it is always in the back of my mind. This Friday, when the doctors told us that he has so few white blood cells, that a paper cut or dirt on a carrot could give him an infection that would put him in the hospital, it really brought me back to the Lord. The funny thing is I thought I already learned this lesson. Being a police officer's wife, I worried about him every night when he left for work. We were newly married and he worked the night shift. Every unexpected knock on the door(twice in the middle of the night), I immediately thought the worst. It was a very good thing for our marriage because I knew that every night he went to work, it could be his last. It definitely made me treat him a lot differently, and we kept very short accounts. I always kissed him and told him how much I loved him. As he promoted and got a desk job, I worried less and less about him being in danger. However, in the last few years, his job has him getting called out to bad areas usually in the middle of the night, and I have to trust the Lord for his life again. Whenever people asked me "Don't you worry that your husband is a police officer?" I would usually answer Yes, a little, but I know that he is not going to die because he is a police officer. Psalm 139 says that God has ordained his days before there was one of them, and if he dies it will be because the Lord has planned it from before the foundation of the earth, not because of his job. I now have to tell myself the same thing about cancer. God has all of our days numbered and as much as we would like to be in control we aren't. Any of us could die at any time for any reason. God is good and He is in control. Knowing that, it should really encourage all of us to treat the people around us better and live lives that are bringing God glory all the time. It is one of those things that I know in my mind, but it is good that God is reminding me to do it. I hope it encourages you to do the same!


Kelli said...

Many thanks to you for your constant encouragement. It is always amazing to me that the people that I should be encouraging and ministering to are the ones doing those things for me. Through your trials, I am learning to trust our Lord more. You have also reminded me to show my husband love each day and to keep "short accounts" with him. Thanks Lauren for sharing your heart. We're still praying for you all and for your dad.

Kelli I.

carolina clan said...

Hi Lauren!!!
I miss you way over here but I sure enjoy keeping up with you from your blog. You truly are an encouragement to others how you are bringing God glory each step of this journey. I am blessed to call you my friend and will continue to pray for your family.
How are you doing with the diet? Have you been able to find any good low potassium meals???
Love you much!

Shelly said...

Hi Lauren,
Thank you for sharing your faith "on your sleeve". I appreciate your honest struggles and testings of your faith. I am encouraged by God through you and Dave with this trial that God has for you. I am praying for you guys. Thank you again for sharing and your honesty. Continue dear sister to look to Him and only Him for your hope, strength, encouragement and will to keep on trusting in Him.
With love and care,
Shelly Werner

Here is a song that I like for you. It is called In Christ Alone by Ketih Getty & Steward Townend of Thank You Music.

In Christ alone my hope is found. He is my light, my strength, my song;
This cornerstone, this solid ground, firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace,
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My comforter, my all in all, here in the love of Christ I stand.

In Christ alone, Who took on flesh, fullness of God in helpless Babe!
This gift of love and righteousness, scorned by the ones He came to save.
'Til on that cross as Jesus died, the wrath of God was satisfied.
For every sin on Him was laid; here in the death of Christ I live.

There in the ground His body lay, light of the world by darkness slain;
Then, bursting forth in glorious day, up from the grave He rose again!
And as He stands in victory, sin's curse has lost its grip on me;
For I am His and He is mine, bought with the precious blood of Christ.

No guilt in life, no fear in death, this is the power of Christ in me;
From life's first cry to final breath, Jesus commands my destiny.
No power of hell, no scheme of man, can ever pluck me from His hand;
'Til He returns or calls me home, here in the power of Christ I'll stand!

Kelli said...

Lauren, That was so true and encouraging. It reminds me of the time to pass when Ivy could have been legally taken from us. God is Sovereign and can do anything. It is just hard sometimes to wait and see what He is going to do. Thank you for your faithful example of clinging to the Lord and wanting to honor Him in your trials. Kelli E.

Elisa P. said...

Lauren, I am encouraged and awed by your demonstration of faith in this struggle. I shouldn't be if I truly believe what the scriptures say about enduring trials. But it is one thing to read it and try to believe it and another to witness it in someone's life. Thank you for your transparency. God is so faithful. To think that He provides the strength you need on this journey and that it is sufficient not only for you but multiplies and overflows into the lives of those around you (and those far away). I will always remember your influence during this period in my life. I hope one day to be able to meet you face to face. You will remain in our prayers. By the way, your children's quotes are hysterical. Thanks for the moment of levity. You are a blessing. Elisa Petree (Shannon Mersch's sister in NC)