I have been awake since 5am… started reading around 5:45 or so. Long night and not much sleep. Had all these thoughts running through my head that I was going to blog about. Then I got on face book and saw where something I put on my blog was quoted by a friend on her face book page. It was my quote from Max Lucado about being 4 times as likely to talk about God than the demands on your day… and I just realized something. This thought has been tingling in the back of my head for some time now, but it just completely broke out and surrounded me now.
One thing that has been difficult for me as a stay-at-home Mom is that I feel like my opportunities to tell people about Jesus are so limited. Most everyone I know is a Christian. The ones that are not, I just don’t have that many opportunities to really tell them about how amazing my God is.
(This is the shortened version of my post. To read the middle section, click here.)
For probably the last year (on and off) I have been praying what is usually referred to as the prayer of Jabez. In the Bible, Jabez prayed,
“Oh Lord, bless me indeed, enlarge my territory. Put your hand on me and keep me from evil that I would not cause harm.” Sounds a little selfish until you read the little book written about it, which is exactly what I did. That is where I learned to pray this with the heart of a servant … to pray that God would enlarge my territory of influence to be able to share about Him, that He would bless me so that I can give back to Him and he can be glorified. I never knew how this would be possible with my staying home, but prayed it anyway. Then God gave my husband the vision to start our own business, and the commitment to tithe… and I started being able to tell our customers about how God was blessing our business. Then we found a new church and I joined a woman’s small group. Even though these women were already Christians, we had the opportunity to share how God was working in our lives and encourage one another. Then I got pregnant and got to meet some amazing women through the birth center where I had Ember… and then… I got cancer.
Wow… Cancer. It feels like death to even just say it. But it’s not! I have seen God work in my life and in the lives of those around me more in the last 6 months in such tangible and life-changing ways… more than I had in the last several years. I have had the opportunity to tell more people about the faithfulness of my Jesus, the love of my creator, and the goodness of my God in the last 4 months than I ever would have thought possible. I have said several times over the last 4 months when I have had these opportunities, “this almost makes the cancer worth it.” Today I sit here in awe, filled with tearful joy as I realize that God has answered my prayer to enlarge my territory for Him and to bless me and my family for His glory. I never, ever, ever in a million years would have asked for cancer or would have guessed that this would be His answer… but it was and is! I can honestly say, “Thank you, Lord, for giving me cancer,” and mean it. To see the lives that have been touched, my momentary discomfort and all that the last 4 months have brought to me and my family has been worth it.
I know that there are many who have faced and are facing far worse prognoses than thyroid cancer… debilitating health problems, sudden loss of loved ones, serious illness of a child, breakdown of marriage… Thyroid cancer seems the lesser evil in many cases. As I have been told over and over, “it’s the best cancer you can have if you are going to have cancer.” 🙂 But I hope that somehow you are encouraged and challenged by my story and all that I have shared and will continue to share. There is so much more to say about all that has happened in the last 4 months, and I can’t wait to tell you the rest!