Monday, May 31, 2010

"...A shield around my head..."

Oh my what a week!!! We moved, which involved the big truck with 4 men and 7 hours of moving furniture...they had to bring all of it up a steep drive, and many steps...they worked so hard! Then John and I and friends, went back for many boxes. Most of the time, we would get it here and realize there was not room for all that and so half the box would go back to our old house for the sale. Many of Mama and Grandma's pretty dishes, many of John's mother's furniture...but I have already said I would not grieve over "things" that are all gone now. Our family has taken all they have room for, so it has to go. We finally got computer hook-up on Saturday but I was too sick and tired to blog until today. In the midst of all the move, I had the last two chemo's of that cycle and the last ones always make me very nauseated, so zofran has been my best friend this weekend. I also have been short of breath. The 1/2 dose did not relieve that problem.
So we are in our cozy apartment...close to family and where we need to be. They are helping in every way and what praise we give God for this blessing of family!
Today is Memorial Day..honoring our soldiers and those who are passed on. John's brother died at age 22 and just think, he would be 88 if he were alive today. Think of all the husbands, brothers, sons, plus the women who are and have been soldiers over the years! We have such blessings of freedom in this country and take so much for granted. Thank you God for our brave soldiers of all the years! "But you are a shield around me, O Lord; you bestow glory on me and lift up my head. To the Lord I cry aloud, and He answers from His holy hill."

Monday, May 24, 2010

The knowledge of the Lord

Another day of nausea...really weird feeling of discomfort in my chest, and shortness of breath...this chemo is doing such a "number" on me, I wonder if I can keep taking it...If it is working, I will do it and just suffer!!!
My sister came and helped today and we got most of my sewing room moved over to Cathy's. They have an extra bedroom we will sew in, me alot, and her on weekends. Our daughter and son-in-law are at their shop most days. My sister among several others also has a "workroom". Someone asked if I would quit sewing since I have cancer, and I said "not until they prize the machine from my cold , dead fingers!" Our family laughs at weird things!
I taught Cathy to sew when she was about 8 years old and I told her "you might need to know how to do this someday". Several magazines and papers who have featured Cathy and her shop/decorating ability, talk about this. We were not always "happy campers" and I would make her take out things not done right and she would cry. I had a new sewing machine that I was taking in sewing at that time (to pay for the machine) and when Cathy was mad once, she carved her name in my NEW machine! AH, the days gone by!!!All through these years God has provided and made a way for us...
In Isaiah, These words are part of the prophesy of Jesus, later to come---"for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea." Isaiah 11:9

Sunday, May 23, 2010

"store up for yourselves treasures in heaven..."

This is not a good day...I woke up nauseated, don't know why unless it is the result of those last two chemo treatments...We went to church and I did not have my zofran with me so we sat there until it was nearly over and came home quickly and I took one and slept a while. Seven-up was good then with crackers...This afternoon was better and we got more packing junk done..I just told John "I know we did not have this much to pack 11 years ago when we moved here!!!" and we had downsized then! He said,"we are older and sicker..." Thanks for the affirmation of our ability---but he is right. Tonight I feel sick again and it has been 8 hours so I can take another zofran and go to bed...maybe tomorrow will be better and we can move some more and pack some more. I sure hope the next two chemo's won't make this nausea worse!
Jesus told us in Matthew 6:19-21, "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth....but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven...for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed me thy name.....

Your kindom come, your will be done...Matthew 6:9-10
I have pushed with all that is in me and so has John to get things partially moved to Cathy and Ronnie's. The movers will be here this week, but there is so much stuff we would not let them move...jim and cindy were immeasureable in helping us. Cathy and Ronnie cleaned our garage, shop are, just unbelieveable all that our children have done. Our grandaughter and her husband came and helped. I had to go through old things I had saved for years and just could not let it go---like all Johny's funeral things (cards, flower memo's, someone took pictures of all the flowers, letters people wrote after he died) I threw all of this away. Our children would not keep this and I had rather dispose of it than have it there for later. I have all my memories for keeping. I did keep some of his favorite toys, calendars, books, pictures, things like that.
I got rid of things from our parents, things that would not mean anything to anyone else. This is the tough part of downsiding!
I have not felt very good but I pushed a lot to do things. Even on 1/2 dose, the doses 3 and 4 were harder on me than doses 1 and 2.
So that means next week will be the tough week, but will finish up that cycle. Hopefully we will be moved by that Thursday, not settled but at least moved.
So, my Father in Heaven, help me and us to have the strength to do all we have to do!

Friday, May 21, 2010

"Her my prayer , O Lord..

Let my cry for help come to you. Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress. Turn your ear to me, when I call, answer me quickly." Psalm 102 1-2
This was my day for #4 chemo of this cycle. Two more next week, then a week off...then a CT and I am anxious to see if it is working. I have felt amazingly good this week. I told Cindy it has been largely due to her helping me. I just could not have gotten up the energy all by myself and she just gave me the energy. Jim got here today and we took lots of boxes over to the new place.
I am feeling better about the move, I think, even though I am ashamed for feeling sad at all. We are so blessed and I keep reminding myself to "shame on me if I feel sad". God must be ashamed with me for putting such emphasis on "stuff".
Tomorrow will be a "hauling stuff" day, boxes and pictures,books, sewing things, clothes, that kind of things and the movers will come Tuesday next week.
A memory came up this week when our resident bluebirds were flying around. Grandma had 10 brothers and sisters, and there were lots of first and double-first cousins. When they got together, there were over 20-30 kids. One day, all the boys took their hats (remember pictures of boys in the late 1800's with their "slouch" hats?) Well they took their hats and went around and collected bird eggs. Why on earth they thought about that, no one knows. They brought this wonderful collection of all colors bird eggs to show the grownups! Oh my were they upset! Then the boys tried to put them back, in sorrow. Of course, they could not find where they went and the birds would not accept them once they are handled...what a sad-fun day!
Just another memory that Grandma told me about.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

God has plans for us...

Well I had the dreaded chemo again was not very bad, only one needle stick (in my port) so that was just a long day, lots of waiting, for the blood report (if I have enough red cells) then the 500 cc of fluid, then the dexadron (sp?) the stuff that keeps me awake at night! (It is 11 right now because God tells us He has plans for us...and we can pray toward those plans.and I am still going strong..) then the lab has to make the chemo then it runs in...all together about 4-5 hours. I sleep, read, do X stitch, eat lunch...all that stuff...and they also gave me another iron infusion, to help make red cells.
I went to art class tonight, always a real "upper" to be with these friends and to lose myself in creating. Since I was not tired, I came home and finished the last emergency pillow order before we move. I think I will try to go to sleep soon.
I go back tomorrow for a repeat...and I really don't care for two straight days, but that is the plan.
I told the nurse that I still have some problems from the radiation in February. She said "radiation is the gift that keeps on giving".I go to that doctor in two weeks and see how that little tumor is doing--hopefully it is gone, since it did not show up on the CT.
A family at church asked for prayers for a friend's 11 year old daughter..she had a sprained leg which resulted in blood clots which led to both feet being amputated!!! Can you imagine? The family lives in Ohio (and her father was killed in a car accident two years ago.)
I don't think we could EVER run out of families to pray for and think of,and as Jeremiah tells us, God says "For I know the plans I have for you"..."plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future..." chapter 29, verse 11.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

"...but be of good cheer..."

John 16:33 says "These things I have spoken to you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."
I woke up at 4 am and could not go back to sleep---I have so much troubling thoughts...our builder is not doing his job well, five months on two rooms seems excessive, right??? I cannot imagine we will fit all we are wanting to keep into those rooms? Actually we have a kitchen, bath, large bedroom and nice size living room, but only two rooms for furniture, right? So not a good start to the day. Cindy, John and I packed more, hauled things from the storage unit to this house for our sale...we cannot take anything to the apartment yet because the final inspector has not signed off...five months???So this is so frustrating. Cindy and I had a few minutes to kill this afternoon so we stopped for coffee at a shop.
The girl at the counter started talking about how she had cried all day, her boyfriend had left her, she lives in a motel, their five year old misses his daddy, her 12 year old lives with grandparents...what a sad life and sad way to live...before we could hardly say a word, she said "I know I need Jesus in my life. I work on Sunday but not all the time, I need to go to church." She went on about how she needed to meet a nice man who would take care of her and I thought, this is near where I will be living, so I might drink alot of coffee..meantime, I think I will pray alot for Stephanie and hope she can find Jesus in her life and a better way of living for her two children. It kind of put my "issues" in perspective...what does it matter if I don't get my "ducks in a row" like I want to. This young girl reached out and I hope I can run into her again.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

"The one who called you is faithful..."

I wrote my entire blog tonight and it was posted on Cindy's blog! So here I go again...This has been a very good day. We shopped, went all over two counties, looked for a couch for our new apartment, Cindy deadheaded my roses, we sewed tonight for an "emergency job" can pillows be emergency???I don't know but they are!
I have felt very good and have one more good day. I guess 3 not so good days and 4 good days is not bad. I have friends who don't have cancer and have 7 bad days a there are lots of things that can take pleasure from your life. But I think you can still have joy in your life, even if health is not the best.
We packed a little more, John packed a lot. I still don't know WHERE he is putting all his STUFF! He is a worse pack rat than I am.
We will tackle the storage unit tomorrow and see what we can go ahead and move over. Jimmy will be here Friday and that will give us more muscle.
I Thessalonians 5 gives comfort for life's challenges..."May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful..." verses 23-24.

Monday, May 17, 2010

"Be joyful always..."

Well this morning, Cindy and I hit the floor running!She worked so hard and was an inspiration for me and kept me going all day. We almost got everything gone through and either packed to go with us, or set aside for the sale. The more we pack to go with us, I keep saying, "where is that going?" and John keeps saying "I will find a place for it"...I want to say, "Not in my closet!" The last downsize, we got rid of things that were nice but we could do without...this time we are getting rid of things that really mean alot and are really important! There is a big difference! I am putting things that were my family things, dishes, pitchers, linens, my collections over the years, things that I never thought about getting rid of! When these things go on the sale table, I will try to not even think about it. I will tell my self that we got to enjoy them all these years and we still have our memories. Of course, a bunch of stuff is going to the grandchildren and to our family. John and I had mothers who collected antiques back before "collecting was cool!"
I hope I can quit being a recluse after we move and that I won't have much housework to do and I can visit friends more...and always hope, do chemo less!!! I will have some gardening in Cathy and Ronnie's gardens but not as much as I have had here. John and I always have gardens no matter where we live and I hope we can have pretty gardens there also.
I felt pretty good today, did lots of lifting and carrying, had a little nausea, but still can tell a big difference in only having 1/2 dose!
I Thessalonians 5:16 tells us to "Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."

Sunday, May 16, 2010

"Therefore we do not lose heart..."

"Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs then all." II Corinthians 4:16-17
This is another verse that just seems to be a have to use. I love these Bible promises especially the ones that give us hope for the future when the diseases and illnesses are gone
We met Cindy's plane this morning, went to church then came home, and worked all day!!! John and I went to Care group tonight and Cindy stayed here and went to bed early. We know we have several days more of really hard work, deciding what to take, packing, carrying, and maybe getting a little fun stuff in gardening or shopping...maybe??I have three days before chemo again. I did get a little nauseous this afternoon, but that is the only side effect so far from this 1/2 dose. I sure hope it stays that way.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

"In Him our heart rejoices..."

I lost everything I just wrote, and don't know why...I get so tired of being so illiterate on this machine!!! This week has been good, and the past two days with chemo have not been bad at all. If they were all like this I could stand it. I know this is cumulative so it may get worse as I go along. I pretty much know the rest of my life will probably be like this, chemo after chemo...unless a miracle of God takes it away. Which is possible...anyway, "We wait in hope for the Lord; He is our help and our shield. In Him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in His holy name." Psalm 33:20-21

We went to a brunch this morning with many of the camping friends I have told about. We looked at old pictures of 30+ years ago when the men had hair and all us girls were skinny and thought we were fat! We were tan and had pretty hair, had on cute clothes and sandals, no lace up shoes or canes....where did the years go???

I have sewed half the day, trying to get ahead of the spring decorating frenzy. I need to pack more and cannot believe the FRAMES we have--of course, when we moved here we downsized and hated to get rid of pictures, now we are downsizing again and HAVE to get rid of maybe 100 + frame! That does not count the pictures we cannot get rid of! Oh well, I guess our children will get rid of them someday.
Meanwhile, "we rejoice in the Lord!"

Friday, May 14, 2010

Rejoice in the Lord

Today was a really busy, busy day. The inspectors came to look at our house and see if anything is wrong with it, and they only found one little thing to be repaired...for which we are so thankful. John and I have packed off and on all day...I have sewed off and on all day. I went for my day 2 chemo and it was not a long day, only gone about 4 hours, so that was not bad. I only slept 5 hours last night because of the Dexatron, the steroid to protect me from the chemo. That really hypes me up and I cannot sleep, so again tonight, I am still up and going at 10:30. I had some nausea this morning and took a zophran. I hate taking all this medicine.
I am through until next Thursday for the chemo and that is good.
A friend told me today that John and I are "brave" to leave our home and go to Cathy's ( same as giving up your home to go to a retirement center). We are the first of the friends our age to give up our home and do this. We have several friends who are late 80's and 90's who are living in retirement centers, and that is when I thought we would do this. But our health dictates this move and I really am looking at the positive side of it, and not being blue about the things we are giving up. I don't think we will lose much freedom. I think we will really enjoy being closer to family and will see our great-granddaughter more and that is good. And our apartment is just beautiful and that helps also.
God is so good to provide just what we need just when we need it---a place to live, the sale of our home, our children helping us ( our son and his wife are coming and she is staying next week to help) so that is also a blessing.
Psalm 32:11 says "Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart!"

Thursday, May 13, 2010

"I called to you for help..."

Psalm 30:1-2 "I will exalt you ,O Lord, for you lifted me out of the depths and did not let my enemies gloat over me. O Lord my God, I called to you for help and you healed me."
I know I use many of these verses over and over--they just "call to me" and mean so much at each occasion. I had the CT this morning early and then we ate breakfast at Panera's then saw the oncologist. He was thrilled that there were no new tumors..granted the old ones in the liver are still there. But how wonderful to know the cancer is not spreading more. I am still numb (like I cannot believe the Ct said what it did) and how blessed I am to start another year (starting on year 7!!!) and still be fighting this demon which I could only do with prayers of many friends and family AND God using this example of wonderful goodness and grace and mercy for us.
We decided that another 6 rounds of 1/2 strength will finish this second cycle and then I can have another CT about June 10 and see if maybe the tiny liver tumors might diminish somewhat. (they are all very small).So I had the smaller dose, a B 12 shot and an Iron infusion to boost my red cells and hopefully give more lung and heart power. I also had the steroid pill, and that is why at 11:30 at night, I am still going strong!
We packed for an hour after we got home at 4:30 today, then I went to art class, came home and we packed some more, and I sewed some.
John calls me the "energizer bunny" and I am after a steroid pill!!!
I go back tomorrow for the second in this cycle...same as today but no B12 or iron.
I am so in the clouds and elated, and feeling like I am so blessed.
For this moment, God has "healed me" a little bit...not totally but in His timing, a little bit is enough!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

"I will tell of the kindness of the Lord..."

"I will tell of the kindness of the Lord, the deeds for which He is to be praised, according to all the Lord has done for us--yes, the many good things He has done..." Isaiah 63:7
What can I say except I dread tomorrow. I am afraid the CT will not show any improvement...I am dreading the needles...I hate the chemo (even 1/2 dose is still bad)...I hate knowing I will feel sick for at least three days...I want to be well so badly, and never hear the word "cancer" again...
Now I have ranted and raved and beat my feet on the life goes on and we are so busy. We are still assuming our house is sold, as we have not heard anything contrary to that. We are packing anyway and will move in two weeks. I am busy sewing for my daughter's shop. We thank God for being busy! My sister came and helped pack yesterday. My daughter in law is coming to stay a week and help me pack. I am so excited. We have always wished for time to just "be" but there may not be much time for that as she will help me clear out "stuff".
At church tonight, our lesson was a continuing going through the prophets and I love Isaiah!!! So much in there is foretelling the Messiah, 1000 years ahead of time. The words are so beautiful and sad. I always think of the "Messiah" at Christmas and love seeing the words that are sung then.
Tomorrow will be either good or bad...I pray for God's continued blessings of kindness.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

..."hope does not disappoint us..."

Today I have corresponded with three friends who have various kinds of cancer...all either in chemo or waiting for surgery. I just "met" one of these and I wrote her a long "letter" telling of how I have done over these six years. As I wrote it I thought "I can't believe I did all this" Another told me of having a good CT today...I was not jealous, but thinking of how badly I want to have a good scan on Thursday.
We are 95 % sure our house has sold---a real God's wonderful blessing, but regardless, we will move in two weeks and be in our new apartment. My sister came today and helped me pack some things. I think stuff multiplies in the closets and on the shelves. We did so much clearing out and getting rid of stuff 11 years ago when we downsized to this house and I cannot believe how much we have to get rid of again. Of course, we are going to a much smalled abode and last time we did lots of getting smaller then also.
One more day of fun then the tough stuff.. Romans 5:5 says .."Hope does no disappoint us because God has poured out His love into our heart by the Holy Spirit whom He has given us..." I think I live on Hope more than anything! Thank you God for all our blessings!

Monday, May 10, 2010

A strong tower...

Proverbs 18:10 says "the name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run in to it and are safe."
I have met a new friend, Kathryn, on a blog--she is an old friend of our daughter-in-law and son. Kathryn has cancer and is also writing a was sent to me and I will put on here how to up and find it. This is all new to her and to my friend Gene in Florida. Each chemo and treatment and radiation is all "new" and frightening and horrifying and the unknown is always the worst.
I am writing to her a synopsis of my Six years experience and now it all seems surreal and I think "did I really do that???"
Some days I feel so under God's protection and other days, I get scared and know satan is attacking me because I will not get angry at God.
In fact one of our preachers asked me if I ever get angry at God and I said, "no, I get sad". This preacher who is also a counselor, said this is a deeper emotion than anger. I may have told you this before, but then I can pull up things gone by and feel them again.
I get angry at cancer. I get angry at the betrayal of our bodies that used to be strong and healthy. I get angry that I really, really did not appreciate all that good health like I should have.
I am happy most of the time, even with this cancer. Except on chemo days, I can almost forget anything is wrong.
So another good day of "vacation", tomorrow another to feel good and be at peace.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

"I will --sleep in peace..."

What a wonderful Mother's Day... Our oldest son called and I enjoyed finding out lots of family stuff from him, then we were at our daughter's for dinner tonight and with two of the grandchildren and their families. I will always miss our Johny and Mother's Day will always be a little lonely and sad, without him...kind of "incomplete". I have a busy week, hope for sale of our home and we are going through papers, old cards, old books and magazines. John wants to keep "everything" and I tell him, the kids will throw this away so quick, when we are gone! Besides we have very little storage room for just "stuff"! Downsizing is so hard to do! As I have said, the hardest part is deciding what you cannot live without and what HAS to family or in a sale. As our town has gone through the terrible floods last week, and our preacher talked about it today, all "this stuff we accumulate is just that---STUFF!" But we get so attached and seem to base our lives around all this furniture, knickknacks, pictures, clothes, Christmas decorations, on and on...
So many families have lost so much and so many say, "well we are alive and that is just stuff". So all my rambling just is so say, that family is what is important, we will do fine as we move, and get used to living in less space. We will be where family is closer and can take care of us as we age even more.
I am going to enjoy my three more days of feeling good, then see what the CT shows on Thursday. I always dread the chemo, dread the accessing my port, dread the needles in the veins, but once I get caught up in it, I am fighting again for my life and trusting God to direct the chemo for my good, totally in His hands as always.

Suzzanne, one of my cousins in Missouri sent this scripture: Psalm 4:8
"I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety."

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Psalm 3:5 "I lie down and sleep..."

"I lie down and sleep; I wake again because the Lord sustains me."

I was so convicted last night after I wrote my blog---I realized how negative and complaining I have become! I asked God to forgive me because if He has permitted this cancer to grow, then He will certainly give the the strength to sustain all the negativity that goes with it. I don't think He gives a person a disease, we just live in a world full of sin and sickness. But I do totally believe God gives the strength and energy, and helps you/me to give Him the glory as we go about our day fighting this sickness.
At Sarah Cannon Center, where I go, there is a "saying" at the check-out-desk---"If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it."
I have seen that elsewhere and know this to be true.
So---I have four more days "off", a CT on Thursday, see the doctor and start the next round of chemo.

"To the Lord I cry aloud, and He answers me from His holy hill." Verse 4

Friday, May 7, 2010

"He gives showers of rain to men..."

Zechariah 10: 1..."Ask the Lord for rain in the springtime; It is the Lord who makes the storm clouds. He gives showers of rain to men, and plants of the field to everyone."

If you have seen the news you know the floods Nashville had last weekend. More rain is coming tonight, hopefully not much. Last week was 13-18 inches in two days and so many buildings, so much damage, irreplaceable public "possession" like Steinway pianos, our new looks-like-a-Greek-temple Symphony/music wonderful building! The Opryland Hotel first floor, the huge mall next to that hotel that is probably gone, the Opryhouse, irreplaceable musical instruments all over Nashville. ! They say this is a 1000 year flood (they come in quantities like that---10, 50, 100, 500, 1000)..
Then our friends who have lost much or all of their homes, furniture, clothes, just everything! Such tragedy, but the people here, the churches, the music community, is pulling together, having telethons, raising money, businesses giving free water to anyone going by, friends tearing out walls, doing all they can physically do to help. Churches are raising money to give to the Red Cross, or to their church members. We are, in short, being the church to all you need it, regardless of what church, or if someone don't even go to church... we are being Jesus to the community.

So we really do not require any more rain tonight, but I am sure God knows our needs, and He will give showers even if we think we don't need them.

I went to art class last night, sewed today, ran errands, felt so normal!!!The only, only thing---the back of your mind NEVER forgets the cancer! God I pray will give me whatever "showers" I need, at any time! I pray He gives each of you the needs you require!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

"Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart.."

At the oncologist today we had a long discussion. My doctor told me the experimental chemo I am on is given in various doses to quite a few patients. They are given in doses ranging from "20" to "36" to "45" to "56" which means the levels of strength. It is called "carfilzomib" I think...not totally sure of the spelling. Five weeks ago I was given "36" for my first dose and handled it well so they gave me "56" the next five times. I did ok for several doses then progressively got sicker as it went along, ending up with the lung inflammation and could hardly breathe by dose six, and they gave me the ZPac and I got well. When we talked today, he understands that of course, I want something that will (ultimate prayer--cure me) hold this cancer at bay and still give a good quality of life...more good days than bad days!
He told me to take another week off and we will do a CT next week and see if this Carbilzomib is doing any good toward shrinking the liver tumors. If it is, then next Thursday and Friday I will start the second round and get "36" each time for 6 times. If the CT shows no improvement, he will switch to a different chemo.
My doctor thinks it is possible for me to have this balance of meds and a good life. He also said he will give me a B12 shot each month for better energy, and boost my blood. Also, I will get a red cell shot whenever I can.
The neurosurgeon wants me to have an MRI to followup for the surgery I had in January, and make sure my brain is normal (?)...I really do not want to go through that again but the oncologist thinks that is a good idea to make sure there is no new tumors or anything there. So I will have to do that some time this summer.
I think all of this is a good plan. I prayed for wisdom to sort out all the information and for my doctor to have a wise protocol. If my insides are not growing new tumors, this is a good plan.
Of course, I am screaming inside--I hate this!!! God alone keeps me logically centered --on Him...I could not do this alone.
Hebrews 10:22 tells us to "...draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us"...verse 23..."let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess for He who promised is faithful."

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

"Rejoice in the Lord..."

By 1999, again Mark was our only grandchild to go and we stayed in the Inn at Falls Creek, but did the usual, bikes, hikes, swimming, golf, and fishing (with a boat of course). John got to drive the boat half the time and all were happy!
The next year, we had acquired a new 11 year old granddaughter (by marriage) and along with more family, we had lots of games every night. We also had the usual hiking and swimming and fishing.

Now all the grandchildren are married and some have children (seven "greats" so far) and we wonder where the years went.
Now I am ignoring the "gorilla in the corner" and I am nervous about tomorrow. I KNOW I cannot just sit back and do nothing! After church tonight, care group members were saying how they are praying that the right decision will be made tomorrow. I pray God will give me the wisdom to listen to the doctor's guidance and make a choice that is wise and will give me more health and maybe cut the cancer back. If I can only get through the next three weeks (six treatments) then I will know if this has worked or not.Please God, guide me. Philippians 4:4 says "rejoice in the Lord always..." and in verse 19, it says "And my God will meet all your needs, according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus." This last verse just jumped out at me, so I guess I needed that verse most of all!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

...:He will be our guide...:

I need to use the scripture about not being anxious, because the closer I get to Thursday, the more "anxious" I get. I feel almost normal and the thought of getting back into the "rat poison" really makes me nauseous! Then I think about the floods here and the friends who have lost so much...Thankfully we have not had any friends who have lost lives. But the whole thing is so difficult to handle.
Well I have been going through the summers and trips with the grandchildren. By 1998, they had all "dropped out" for jobs, summer school activities or busy stuff. The youngest grandson still had not had his "special trip". We told him the others had had such great trips, what did he want to do? "I just want to go to Falls Creek" was his reply. We urged him to look at a map and pick a famous lake somewhere like Yellowstone, etc. and go there to fish (his greatest love at that point). Again he told us he just wanted to go to Falls creek. So we rented a cabin which hung over the lake, rented a boat for the week, and stocked up on any food he might want and ate in the Inn whenever he wanted to. In short: a boy's dream vacation! He fished before breakfast, afternoon, whenever he wanted to. We rode bikes, climbed the falls, swam in the big "swimming hole"; then we would play golf in the afternoons and really had such a good time. One really funny thing, John wanted to guide the boat and Mark said "no, he knew where the fish were" and John said, "but I am paying for the boat", so these two "children" went round and round over the boat while I laughed! The last day, Mark said "Pops, you can drive the boat back to turn it in"...such was our funny week and really memorable in every way.He went with us one more summer when he was 15, but then he started working and he too dropped out. These were the greatest summers ever.
Times passes, now we see "greats" but won't take them on trips like this.
God provides for each phase of life...Psalm 48:14 says, "For this God is our God for ever and ever; He will be our guide even to the end."

Monday, May 3, 2010

"Sing for Joy to God..."

Well we lost our electricity for a while and lost our cable and TV for more than two days...and it rained and rained!! Nashville had 13 inches of rain in two days, all time record in that time period, and a small town south of here had 18 inches of rain in that time period. So everything is flooded and many friends and acquaintances have lost homes, furniture, cars, and it is just devastating. One friend said, "well we are OK and that is just things"...a blessed attitude for such tragedy.
Lots of trees were blown down and lines down, straight line winds came through, so this was some weekend!!!
When they removed the cable at Falls Creek to go down to the big falls, they left another cable that goes down to a lake and the bottom of another falls. That is still there to climb down and we would usually go down that. It is longer, and slopes more but not as straight up and down. You still have to hold the cable to not fall going up and down and in several places, you have to just climb up a bluff. The next summer besides the usual Falls Creek, we took one grandson to Pickett Park, and nearby is the grist mill and home of Sgt. Alvin York. He was the World War I hero who captured many German soldiers..he had learned to shoot, hunting squirrels in the Tennessee woods and he was a crack shot! The mill overlooks a waterfall and is in such beautiful land to hike through.
I am still thinking what to do when I go Thursday to the oncologist. I know, I said I could not do the chemo any more. I just go back and forth in my mind, can I do it again or not???I am half way through this treatment and it would be a shame if it is working to give up half way through. I guess alot depends on what my doctor says and if he thinks I can physically do it. This nearly two weeks "off" sure did help and I feel stronger that a week ago.
I pray that God will make it very clear what I ought to do. Psalm 81:1 says "Sing for joy to God our strength, shout aloud to the God of Jacob..."

Saturday, May 1, 2010

"Therefore I glory in Christ Jesus..."

Yesterday was such a glorious day, outside, gardening, lying in the grass, watching clouds go by...Today was 10 inches of rain! Wow, what an opposite...God gives us what we need at each moment. So we are praying and trying to not be please- God- give- me- this -and- this! He knows our every need so how do I pray for health and our house to sell and not be like a child wanting all these things? I want to give God all the glory for His wondrous care of us and talk to Him about what we feel are "needs" but not be a "please give me this and that".
I told you about the boys big trip. Next year or so, when she was 14, our oldest granddaughter got her "big trip". We let her choose anywhere she wanted to go in the US and she chose Seattle. We flew there, stayed close to the Needle (where we ate wonderful steaks one night and watched the Needle circle uptown. A friend's (here) parents live there and they had us for fresh salmon one fresh can you get! We took the speed ferry over to Victoria Island and saw Butchart Gardens and stayed there in a B&B. Those gardens were a rock quarry and the owners' wife had soil hauled in and made 55 acres of the most fabulous gardens, lots and lots of roses which grow perfectly in that soil and weather.
We always had fun with our grandchildren and this was no exception.
We also did the Falls Creek camping trip that summer with everyone.
I think that was the year one grandson saw a snake by the path, and everyone said "oh sure you did..." thinking he was making it up...soon we came to that part of the path and sure enough---a big snake!!!We believed him always from then on!
Now that granddaughter had three sons of her own, and how precious they are..and the memories we have of our special summers together!
"Therefore I glory in Christ Jesus in my service to God.." Romans 2:17