thanksgiving November 20, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — cindytripp @ 5:32 pm

A year ago I was in the midst of preparing for our family Thanksgiving, making my requisite 3 trips to Kroger, and anticipating my family sitting around my paternal grandparents’ dining room table as we enjoyed our meal. I was coughing a lot too and had a general feeling of discomfort, but there was nothing specific that alarmed me.

Needless to say, my February diagnosis of stage 4 lung cancer was utterly shocking, and the change two weeks later from lung cancer to stage 4 unknown primary was not tremendously reassuring. The following weeks and months unfolded with moment-by-moment surprises and challenges and blessings. Today, nine months later, I still wake up sometimes with a clutch in my heart and a feeling of shock that the diagnosis is true and that I still have cancer.

One truth, however, has resonated throughout this experience, and that is how faithfully God has provided for me and my family. Last Thanksgiving, God knew what I would need. On that February afternoon, God had already prepared the way—the people, the places, the encouragement, the medicines, everything that I would need when I would need them.

This Thanksgiving I am so very thankful for His faithfulness and His provision. This Thanksgiving I am grateful in ways that I can’t express, and I am joyful to know God’s love in a more powerful way.

What’s the latest with my health? My scan last week was “better,” according to the oncologist. “Better” means that the tumors are not growing, which is great news. Even though they are still there, the tumors aren’t growing. Yea! On the other hand, the neuropathy and the bone/joint/muscle pain—which I thought had the same source—are not getting better. The likely culprit for the b/j/m pain is the tiny, little anti-estrogen tablet I take every day, the same tablet that is depriving the tumors of the estrogen they need to grow.  Ah, you probably see the dilemma, right?

The doctor asked if I can “push” through my days, doing what I need to do, despite the pain. My answer is sometimes I can and sometimes I cannot. I do believe that I am tougher than I think, and so I will continue to push through when I can and go home to rest when I cannot.

I also know that my faithful God continues to provide because these struggles are not news to Him. I don’t have to remind Him of what I feel because He has not forgotten me.

Today was our Thanksgiving service at Brentwood Academy, one of the most precious times in our school year. We opened worship with the song, “Blessed Be the Name” (written by Matt and Beth Redman; recorded by the Newsboys; sung in countless churches and gatherings around the world):

Blessed be Your name
When the sun’s shining down on me
When the world’s ‘all as it should be’
Blessed be Your name

Blessed be Your name
On the road marked with suffering
Though there’s pain in the offering
Blessed be Your name

Every blessing You pour out
I’ll turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be Your glorious name.

Blessed be His name indeed. May you too be blessed by reality of the glories of our Lord.

Happy Thanksgiving.