Friday, August 19, 2011


I have spent a good bit of time this week working on my disability benefits. Those words, "disability" and "benefit" used together always seem a little funny to me. It sounds like "Hey, your disabled - you get a prize!" I am very thankful for these monetary benefits...oh boy, am I thankful! But it is not a quick process to go through. Thankfully I had someone help me understand the paperwork at the beginning. But along the way there are letters and meetings and emails and phone calls. I received a phone call telling me I should be receiving a letter - when I got the letter it basically said I should have received a phone call. Mix all this information with a chemo brain and you have one confused woman on your hands!

On top of that I have been paying on a disability policy for twelve years that unfortunately I get to use. So that is another collection of phone calls, letters and emails. I considered myself a person of average intelligence until I went through this process. With this company you have to give info to a recording using the numbers on your phone before you are granted an audience with customer service. The info required: My claim number (7 digits), my phone number (10 digits), my birthdate (6 digits) and for security purposes I had to spell out the model of my first car! All of this number punching gave me the privilege to hear this recording, "Our office is closed for a training meeting - please call back after 1:00 pm" click.

My Pastor gave a message on Sunday about the benefits of God (Psalm 103:1-5)
1. He forgives your sin
2. He heals your diseases
3. He redeems your life
4. He loves you unconditionally
5. He satisfies your soul

How marvelous are the benefits of God! These benefits don't run out, you don't have to complete any paperwork, no password is needed and you don't have to punch a bunch of numbers! You don't even have to pay for it - Jesus Christ paid the fee for us! Woohoo! "That'll preach brother!"

I am thankful for the monetary benefits I receive, but, Oh, how much more thankful I am for the benefits of God! To God I am not a claim number. He knows my name and everything about me - even the number of hairs and freckles! He knows my every need and sees every teardrop.

Thank you God! Through the death, burial and resurrection of Your Son, I have full access to you. All You want from me is my love and worship. Help me keep my heart's focus on You and let my worship be pleasing to You. Amen

Monday, August 15, 2011

I have something cool I want to share today, but as a logged on I realized I haven't done a medical update. So, first things first. I had a PET scan last Tuesday. I have this scan every three months to check on those nasty tumors that have taken up residence in my lungs. This scan shows if the tumors have changed in size and if the cancer has spread to another part of my body.

Steve and I went Thursday for the results. Our prayer before these results is always that God will give us the strength and courage to handle the results whatever they may be and that through it all we will continue to give God the glory. The results were not what we wanted to hear. The tumors have grown, but praise God the cancer has not spread elsewhere. After talking things over with the doc, it was decided that it is time for me to go to a different treatment plan. I've been given a break until September to give my body time to regain strength before hitting it with bigger guns. On September 7, I will begin a regimen of 48 straight hours of chemo every other week and just like the last plan, we will continue for as long as it works. on to more fun stuff! Sometimes people tell me how "good" or how "wonderful" I look and I have a "glow" about me. I know they are not talking of a physical beauty. I've gained over 80 pounds, have thinning gray hair and about a glabillion freckles on my face! A beauty queen I am not! What I hope people are seeing in me is the glory of God. Instead of saying thanks I try to say "to God's glory"! Please do not read into this that I feel "holier than thou" or that I think I have it all figured out. I have realized that without Christ I am nothing. Life is not about a career, a house or where I attend church. Life is about focusing on Jesus and knowing that without Him I would be as lost at a goat!

When we truly give our lives over to God he fills us with His glory, but it's not a one time fill up. If you continue to focus on Him, continue to look to His Word for guidance and continue to praise Him he will continue to fill you with His glory! Woohoo!!!

In 2 Corinthians 2:7-18, Paul is talking about the glory of the New Covenant. I encourage you to read it because it is really cool. In verses 18 "And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." Man, I love the Word - it just blows me away!

What if we spent as much time seeking God as we do worrying about our appearance?

I've always appreciated when someone tells me I look nice, but what an awesome thing it is for someone to tell you they can see the Glory of God on your face! Imagine if the whole world focused on God and because of that we all reflected an ever-increasing glory! Then Max Factor and all those other cosmetic companies wouldn't have to airbrush pictures of their models!

Alright, I'm going to sign off now and enjoy the rest of this beautiful day!


Thursday, August 11, 2011


I came across a familiar verse during my study time this morning. I felt inspired to write about it. I was writing it for myself but was encouraged to share it on my here it goes!

"Let us run the race that is before us and never give up." Hebrews 12:1

Sometimes I am weary from the race that seems so long,
The time spent weak and crying, begging again to be made strong.

Why are some untouched by the sickness of this child,
Their life seems so carefree, their troubles only mild.

Am I paying for past sins from when my heart was cold?
When God wanted to guide me, but I refused and tightened my hold?

I know this world is a fallen one, full of sin and grief and pain,
But I also know that God forgives us and for this His Son was slain.

Because of His love for us, God gave His only Son,
So if this is the race chosen for me, then this is the race I will run.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Basket of Blessings

"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time
we will reap a harvest if we do not give up."
Galatians 6:9

Isn't that a beautiful basket of food? When I saw this basket sitting on my kitchen counter I knew I had to share it's beauty with you. I love the rich colors and smells from fresh produce. I like food fresh from the garden. It makes me think that God is saying, "Here you go, this is a gift for you."

You've heard me brag about all the flowers that Steve plants, but I don't think I've mentioned the garden spots. I guess we have had a vegetable garden almost every year that we've been married. Some have been large, some have been small. One year we had a huge garden, it took up our entire backyard. Steve has always been the outdoor person in our marriage. In our earlier years, I don't think he realized that I had grown up working in gardens, snapping beans, shucking corn, etc. I remember once I offered to weed the garden for him. He was quite surprised that I knew how to do it!

This year Steve underestimated our garden's abilities to grow. We don't have a great garden area, so he figured some of what he planted would die out. I think everything with the exception of broccoli has out done itself. I don't know how many hundreds of cherry tomatoes he has picked, along with squash, okra, beans, peas, and tomatoes.

I have been toying with the idea of canning tomatoes. I've frozen peas, beans and corn before, but canning tomatoes will be a new experience. I will let you know if I get brave enough to try it.

I've had a busy week since my last treatment. I did my usual hibernation for 3-4 days, but once I got back on my feet I was out and about. I'm trying to stay busy and as active as possible. This week is a big week at our house. My PET scan is scheduled for tomorrow with the results on Thursday. This test will show what these nasty tumors have been doing for the past three months. Our prayer continues to be that God's glory will be shown and that our faith is strong enough to continue praising God through the storm. I have several friends that are also having cancer tests this week. I pray they will find their strength and peace in God.

Have a great week!