Thursday, September 3, 2015


"But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 
2 Corinthians 4: 7-9

Monday morning I received the call....."You have breast cancer".  By Monday night I was exhausted and weary. I could not begin to fathom how I was going to fight cancer for a second time.  I was so thankful my body had been healing more and more and was blown away by the knowledge that one more battle was ahead.

Our oldest son called that night for a second time and I know I sounded terrible.  He asked how I was doing and I said told him not so well.  I told him I was weary of fighting.  I just did not have it in me.

And then Matt spoke:

"It is okay tonight that you are feeling weary, Mom.  It is okay to let Jesus carry you tonight like in the poem, "Footprints".  But tomorrow when I call you, I want to hear a different story.  Tomorrow you need to get back up and fight.   Make a battle plan and fight.  You can do this, Mom.  This is just one more hurdle to get across, and you have crossed many and done well.  You can do this."

He did call the next day, and I was not great, but I was up and moving forward.  I had started making plans for how to take care of myself.  That same day I asked Joel to get out the framed family photos we had packed for the move.  I needed to have them around me.  I needed to SEE who I was fighting for.  I asked friends to come by this week to pray and visit.  I asked for prayers from our Facebook friends, family, and other friends and former church congregations.   I took a leave of absence from the prayer group I facilitate.  It requires several check-ins a day.  I looked into essential oils to help support my body during this process.  I am still eating healthy even though comfort food is calling my name.  I decided to write about this journey. I let the tears fall when and where they needed to, and  I asked for lots of hugs from Joel.  I kept him close.  I slowly, and periodically began to open my heart again to what Holy Spirit wanted to tell me.

Today we discussed the house and moving and made a decision to keep the house off the market indefinitely, and re-visit our move full time to AZ.  It was always hard to think about being far from family, and it was even more difficult after cancer came to call.  Right now we need to become as stress free as possible.  I also made the call to my breast cancer advocate and we both had a long talk even though fear wanted to stop me from hearing any more news.  It turns out she had only good news to share on the further testing they did.  It gave us more hope.  This is how I am fighting the battle.  It is a battle for not only my body, but for my soul.

This battling.  There are times it feels like it is all I have done since I was a child.  Certainly it has been constant with health issues for so many years.  It is what I am familiar with, which makes me wonder if I know how to rest.

I heard today that God has not asked us to live from battle to battle in our lives, but from glory to glory.  The battle to battle becomes the focus ~~all about the fight, not about Jesus;  There are definitely times to fight.  This is one of those times.  BUT it is also time to rest in what we know.  To rest in the victory that is ours even in death.  It is time to rest in the arms of Jesus, sheltered in His wings.  It is time to let myself be loved by those who love me/us.  This is Joel's journey, too, and today, we are in a better place as we remember all God has done for us.  As we remember we are loved.

Our oldest son and our daughters have called and been encouraging, along with some family, and just what did we do before texting?  Our other son and many others are texting encouraging words.  Oh my goodness it has been like love taps from God to hear from them.  I know I am not in this battle alone.  So, when I am weary, I am resting, and when I need to fight, I am.  Even when all I can hear around me are the sounds of the battle, I am not letting cancer's voice be bigger than the voice of my Savior, my Healer.  I am not letting fear consume me.  Well, at least I am not partnering with it!! And when this is over we are going to have a "count it all joy" party and you are all invited!


NanaNor's said...

Dear Renee, It is hard to wrap my head around your news, but I know He is carrying you. I just got back from seeing War Room(if you can, you and Joel should go see it) and am encouraged to begin praying more. I will be holding you up. You are such a faithful daughter of the most High King and I know He will touch you with Healing.
My sil just lost his job this week and it seems we need to gather in prayer continually for one another.
With love,

Anita Johnson said...

You know you are in my thoughts and prayers. XO Anita

Anonymous said...

Thank you Noreen
Blessings and prayers for your SIL too. We are going to go see a War Room tomorrow!
Hugs and love right back...

Renee said...

Yes, dear friend, I know you are praying. Thanks Anita.

Sharon said...

Renee, I don't quite know what to say. I am deeply sorry for this most devastating news. My prayers are with you, and Joel, and your entire family. I am praying for strength to fight this new battle, and for peace and comfort along the way. And, for the record, I will gladly attend your *count it all joy* party! May that day arrive sooner than later.



Laurel said...

So sorry to hear of this new battle you are facing, Renee. Sending hugs and prayers and positive thoughts your way. xoxo