Today was a day of waiting. Mary, with her husband Bervin and their firstborn, Luke, moved from one clinical waiting room to another for blood tests, scan prep, and then the full body scan itself. It was tempting to lose patience, but Mary testified to a heart and mind overflowing with peace through those many long hours. This, she believes, was the result of the prayers of people like you, Blog Reader. And Mary wants you to know she is filled with gratitude tonight!
First, the results of last November’s scan: a ¾” tumor in Mary’s liver, nodules in one lung, and lymph nodes in her abdomen that were also cancerous. Today’s results, nearly 7 months later, are these:
The lung nodules and lymph nodes are virtually unchanged. This was good news! But the liver tumor has grown to almost 2 inches. As Mary put it, “That’s not such good news.”
Even so, there are things to be thankful for. Mary’s doctor told them that the slow-growing nature of her cancer is not typical in pancreatic patients. That’s one more item in the “good” column. And another: all of Mary’s blood tests today came back normal! For example, though she has always leaned toward anemia, today’s hemoglobin count was up in normal range.
But the best news of all today (the #1 “good”) is that God is in the process of working all these things, both the good and the bad, together for good in Mary’s life and even in the lives of all those who love her. We may not be able to see the details yet, but we believe the promise because it was made by a trustworthy Person.
Over the course of many hours of waiting today, Mary said she was reminded of our Mom when she went through a painful medical procedure years ago. She began quietly singing a favorite old hymn, and as she did, she was able to disassociate from the misery of the moment and be transported to “things above:”
“Turn your eyes upon Jesus. Look full in his wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the light of his glory and grace.”
Mary also mentioned being encouraged by the many word pictures of Psalm 91: the shelter of the Most High; the shadow of the Almighty; God as her Refuge and Fortress; being covered by His feathers; being protected under His wings; knowing angels were standing guard.
When all was said and done, her summary of the day was a good one: “I’ve decided just to be thankful for the good and trust God with the bad.”
“You [Lord] will keep [her] in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You, because [she] trusts in You.” Isaiah 26:3