Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Gifts of Cancer

For my second thyrogen shot today,
I was accompanied by my son, Jon.
I like to have company and I think it is good
 to include the kids on some of my life.

I was met by Judy,
an older woman whose beauty and light wrinkles
dwelt together in such unity,
it made me instantly think that aging couldn't be so bad,
if I could age like her.

The vibrancy of her face was matched
by the vibrancy of her heart.

She changed my day.

She may have changed my life.

Some nurses are kindly dutiful.
Others are sympathetic.
Those rare ones who empathize in such a way
you feel they have picked up
one end of your cancer
and helped carry it down that sterile hallway.

She talked in such a way that proved she had read my chart
 and understood my health situation.

She laughed when she saw me taking a picture of the bedpan
with the shot paraphenalia.  She hadn't seen that before!

I told her I was a writer, and I wanted pictures to help journalize my story.

She was so excited and told me that she tells her
 cancer patients to journal their journey
as part of the healing process.
When they reach the end, they can read what they wrote
and be amazed at their strength and their growth.

As she kept talking about the cancer,
she almost made my heart stop.

"The gifts of cancer are there,
you just have to find them
and embrace them."

She must have thought my look was disbelief,
but I didn't speak to clarify,
 for fear she would stop her serenade on suffering.

"There are gifts of cancer, you know.
It just doesn't take from you."

She spoke of family, of personal maturity and other lessons learned along the journey.

I have experienced that,
I believe that,
I just hadn't heard it expressed
so succinctly,
so positively.

My Gifts I am Embracing
The Lord Jesus Christ
the INDESCRIBABLE Presence of the Holy Spirit 
 His strength when I am weak
new insight to Job's life :)
the love of my family
the love of my friends
the kindness of strangers
new priorities in life
new appreciation for each day
truly learning to be thankful in all things
comfort from the Lord to give to others
the Scriptures speak more deeply to my heart
experiencing JOY as a spiritual choice not a circumstance
being chosen to share in His sufferings-
because if I suffer with Him, I shall be glorified with Him
 physical help from friends, neighbors and family
cards, letters, and emails with thoughts of love and appreciation
the ability to forgive those who make mistakes that affect my health
watching my kids grow in their OWN faith
watching my kids meet needs without me asking
watching my kids serve me, when I should be serving them
the love of a man,
who doesn't see the scar, the weight gain, the skin issues,
who still thinks I am as beautiful as the day we married
a Mommy and Daddy who still take care of me
prayers of faithful Christians
the power of having my arms upheld in victory-
when I too weak to lift them anymore
learning dust isn't poisonous
learning to accept help when offered!
learning hospitality comes before pride -
even if company has to shove stuff off my couch
to find a place to sit


Rightfully, maybe we should clarify
the title as Gifts of Suffering.
We all are going through something.
Just because it isn't cancer,
doesn't mean it isn't hard,
doesn't mean it isn't challenging you,
and causing you pain and growth.

What trial has the Lord allowed in your life?
What Gifts of Suffering has He given you?

Day Two is Over


  1. We entertain angels unaware!
    Beautiful thoughts, thanks Mindy. You are so gracious to be able to still recognize that others are struggling. God bless you.

  2. So good! I've had nice nurses, but that one was amazing!

  3. Thinking and praying for you since Friday!! Keep pressing on for HIM.

  4. God must have known you needed something special for day 2. Praise Him, Praise Him.

  5. I am finally being able to praise and thank God during my current trials....and in return I am receiving the gift of peace. What peace! Thank you for sharing your gifts. I'm going to have to write down mine now too! Bless you Mindy. I am still praying...every morning.

  6. Thinking of you and praying for God's blessing on the treatments.
    I love you, Mindy.


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