Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise"1 (Lyrics)
Philippians 4:11-13 – Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. (ESV)
There is hope … There is hope!
Years ago, I was misdiagnosed with having Lou Gehrig's disease. At that moment, I saw my life flash before my eyes. My husband threw his arms around me, holding me tight. After a few comments, we left the doctor's office. In an instant, I quietly decided that my family was not going to endure seeing me die, cell by cell. I planned to take my own life. Fortunately, the Lord intervened, as I later learned that my illness was not Lou Gehrig's, but an autoimmune disease called "inclusion body myositis." At that point, although I was becoming progressively weaker, I realized that God that was not finished with me yet, so I was happy.
Subsequently, in 2005, I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. Despite the surgery, multiple rounds of chemotherapy, and radiation, I felt blessed that the cancer had been found. Through every needle stick, the toxic treatments, and the constant depression which followed, my heavenly Father was with me. Once again, Jesus walked with me; thus, I knew that He had other plans for this tough old bird.
Clearly, I discovered that the Lord's will for me is to bring cheer, love, and faith as I write to suffering people worldwide via my laptop computer. Additionally, God's plan includes the blessings of an amazing husband and family who have supported me throughout the challenges of a disease that many have never heard of, on top of an overwhelming struggle with ovarian cancer. Besides that, my three small Bichon dogs were a continual source of comfort to me during my illnesses — another wonderful blessing from God.
Still, my story does not end there. While the cancer markers have been low for two years, they have recently begun rising. I continue to face the progressing weakness of inclusion body myositis and the possibility of reoccurring cancer. Yet, despite all this, I know that my work is not finished, and my heavenly Father will continue to guide me while I remain on this earth, for however long that may be.
Perhaps you are facing similar trials of your own, trials which seem like a story with no end in sight. Nevertheless, each day is a new beginning and a gift from God. He is faithful in providing all we need as He enables us to live each day to the fullest. Therefore, let us give praise and glory to God in all situations; then, we will experience the purpose for which we are called, and our hearts will be filled with hope for the future.
Prayer: Dear heavenly Father, we thank You for the abundance of blessings that You have provided in the midst of trials, so that we, in turn, may be a blessing to others. Enable us to fulfill the purpose which You have ordained, as we look to You in facing the future with confidence and hope. In Jesus' holy name, we pray. Amen.