It has happened again. The rug. Pulled out from under our feet and we are upended. Reeling. Sad. Clinging.
I saw the doctor to finally get answers about the kidney stone, aptly named Stanley by a friend of ours. The good news, Stanley is gone. No. more. stone!
However… they see more on the ultrasound than they would like. There is a mass of some sort in the kidney. A small one, thankfully, but a mass. They are going to schedule an MRI (am still waiting on date for that) which should give him more of an idea of what we are dealing with. Top choices are: a cyst (but it doesn’t look fluid-filled), breast cancer metastasis, or a whole new cancer–kidney cancer (which would bring us up to five different types).
Reeling. Sad. Clinging.
Once they know more from the MRI, they’ll go in with a needle to deal with the mass. If it’s cancer, they’ll burn it up with radiation and then they’ll just watch the area. So it’s overwhelming, but not huge like some other news we’ve had.
I told our children. Y’all, I am so tired of seeing the fear, the sadness, the loss on their faces. So very tired.
Reeling. Sad. Clinging.
I am tired of the rug being pulled out from under us, but at the same time, I accept that this is our life. Incurable cancer does this to you without warning.
But here’s the thing. He puts it back. The rug, woven through with the tapestry of our lives. Our God puts it back. He doesn’t leave us floundering and trying to get our footing. And each time it is pulled from under us, we get to see the Rock we’re standing on. And each time He puts it back, the Rock feels firmer under our feet.
May I use some hopefully sanctified imagination here? After all, as Frances Schaeffer wrote, “The Christian is the really free man–he is free to have imagination. This, too, is our heritage. The Christian is the one whose imagination should fly beyond the stars.”
I wonder if that rug will sit on the floor of our mansion in heaven? I like to think that I’ll see it, that I’ll run my hands over it and remember His goodness…
“See that?” I’ll say, “That green? That’s the grass in which we smothered our bare feet, trying to taste the goodness of God’s earth. And that? That gold? That’s the gold of sunsets we watched out the window and marveled at His beauty. The black? That’s the inky darkness of long nights, of midnight cancer… but every black strand turns brilliant yellow as the light emerged. And this red? It’s the cut of every knife, every incision into my body, every needle prick, every scar. And the blue? It’s the water He gave me to drink daily through His Word. Look, there’s the pink of ribbons friends wore to honor me. This purple? That’s the laughter of my children. There’s a lot of purple in there. And white… the purity of my Brian’s love for me, an example of Jesus. And look, more red… Jesus’ blood shed for me. And this one, look how much of this clear strand there is. These are the unseen prayers of those who loved us, their tears. My tears are over there on that shelf in a bottle. Theirs are in bottles, too, but this rug is woven with them, too (I’m not sure how that works). And look at the brown and white and yellow in all different shades, these are the arms of those who carried us through. And all of it, a remembrance of His faithfulness to bring us through. Shot through with His mercy, goodness and grace. Isn’t it the most beautiful tapestry you’ve ever seen?”
I have sat with friends this week to weep, enveloped in hugs of care. I have poured out my heart and rocked in Brian’s arms. I have wiped the tears of my children. And held my dear friend, her head on my knee, my head on hers while voices covered us in prayer. We are held. And through it all, you are adding to the beautiful tapestry in my life.
Would you continue to pray for us?
I keep searching for the answers to my doubts
It’s like I’m caught between belief and wanting out
But there’s this promise that my soul just cannot shake
That I am loved despite the struggles of my faith
And now that my eyes are open
I can see that I am stronger broken
You’re the mystery that I put my hope in
More I seek, the more I find
Don’t want to live like I’m an orphan with no bed
Still I keep searching for a place to rest my head
But I have all I’ve ever needed
Help me trust beyond what I’m not seeing
To be content with all this grace You’ve given
In my weakness You are strong
Your grace is my sole sufficiency
Your power is made perfect when I’m weak
Just want to shout it out for the world to hear it
That I’m His kid no matter what I’m feeling
I’m doubting doubts, I just cannot help believing
That I am loved no matter what
I am loved no matter what!