“Mommy, I wish Jesus would heal you.”
“Mommy, I wish Jesus would heal you!!”, my precious one exclaimed with tears in his eyes, lips quivering, pure-hearted and raw…
As he watched me struggle to swallow even the smallest sip, overcoming sharp pain in my throat, he groaned every time he saw the look and heard the sound of my struggle. This boy knows how to pray. He knows how to ask God. And my heart wept… “Jesus, please hear this cry and the prayer, for his sake”. And then I had to hide my tears.
Sometimes I wonder how much our body can take. We are forced to fight the main battle on the destructive enemy named cancer, the battle we did not choose, but it ran over us like a train, punched us in the gut, and threw us out in the very front lines, shocked, ears ringing from deafening, numbing reality of it all. The second layer of the battle is the unimaginable, often painful and traumatizing cost of the battle itself… I find myself in a replay movie of the past three years, and my reel consisted of sliding in and out of various scanning machines, endless IV’s, six (SIX) different major surgeries, and seven biopsies that painfully burnt themselves into my brain, being wheeled into OR with uncontrolled tears and sense of loss (yes, breast cancer is the reason we lose body parts, and we grieve, because we feel less human in those moments, feel less than, and feel the loss of identity and worth)… Then we are confronted with contents of who we really are inside, because the image in the mirror is no longer us. Hairless, no lashes, no brows, looking worse than a yellow wall paper, cut, bruised, burnt.
Up to that point, I have seen the chemo chair more than I have seen green grass. My prayers were often a whisper, as the IV machine pulls up, and then the long drip… After a first couple of times, I’ve already figured out the pattern, like a clock… Six hour drip with episodes of chest pain, blacking out, or smelling funny chemicals; then the evening comes and my body begins to burn. Yes, burn. As it were on fire inside and out. My insides, my stomach, throat, chest, all in painful agony. All my skin was by now beet-red, cracked, dried up, burning hot. That is day one. On day two, all the sensations get a little bit worse, and they give me a shot to boost the immune system, which adds more joint and muscle pain, and my bones seem to weep for next several days. This feeling goes on for a couple of weeks, then eases up, and I go right back in.
“For I will health to you And heal you of your wounds,’ says the Lord”. Jeremiah 30:17
So tonight, moaning from piercing pain, unable to eat or drink, I wept. I wept like a wounded puppy. I tried to hide myself not to let my sweet boy see me this way, but he could hear behind the door, and I could hear his sweetest voice in the world, pleading, “Mommy, are you ok? Are you ok?” Radiation burnt the insides of my throat, and I did not know if I could take the pain… How much more? How did this happen, three years later, when I thought I was on the mend. I am faced with another giant, but this time bigger and meaner! How do I reconcile the reality of this war. Every medical report and prognosis is screaming at me, “You will not survive this time…” They tell me there isn’t much time, so I gear up for next series of treatments, scans, and nagging mental pictures of being bed ridden and stricken… “God almighty, You are good and merciful, can you hear me?”
In that moment I remembered right before my eyes, the beating, the suffering of my Lord, flesh ripped with each whip, bones exposed, blood spilled… In that moment I felt His gentle soothing that stilled my soul and said “I love you! I understand.” There was no condemnation, no striving in this sweet perfect peace. Every stripe, every wound on His back, are for me… For my healing. For my wholeness.
Sometimes we need to speak His Word, and often. Speak over the pain and affliction, in His power and authority. But tonight He showed me one more piece to healing I did not see… “I will restore health to you and heal your wounds” came as a still small voice, like an imprint on my heart. I realized now that He Himself, in His sovereignty, personally, directly, undeniably, promises and desires to heal me, restore my health, and heal the wounds sustained in the journey. I knew this was not the moment to name it or claim it… This was my sacred moment to call out to my loving Abba Father, Daddy God Himself, that He would do as He said He would, as He desires to.
When we have a relationship with our good, good Father, as we come before His face and let Him light up our heart with His thoughts, His love, His plans and goodness for us, we get to know that He wants us to ask. Our loving Father, He already said He knows His plans for us, to give us hope and the future.