Thursday, July 16, 2009

"But If Not..."

This will probably be a long, "theraputic", post for me today, so bear with me:) I will get to what we heard today, at the radiology oncologists' appointment, in a few minutes. First I would like to write about something that has been on my heart.
I was able to go to our revival two nights last week. On one of the nights the preacher was speaking on my favorite story in the bible, The Firery Furnace. Most everyone will know this story but in case you don't I will just give a brief version. The king, Nebuchadnezzar, had made a decree that at the sound of certain musical instruments that everyone was to bow down and worship his golden image. His decree stated that who ever did not fall down and worship this image would be cast into a firey furnace. Three jews, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego refused to bow down and worship this image. The king had these men brought to him, he repeated his decree to them and told them if they did not comply they would be cast into the firey furnace. He then asked them "and who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?" To which they replied "If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up." So the king got mad, ordered these three men bound, the furnace heated seven times hotter than normal, and these men to be thrown in. But when he looked in there were four men in the fire, the form of the fourth was like the son of God, and they were walking around unharmed.
I woke up early this morning, as usual, praying for two friends of ours who our going through physical trials themselves. I couldn't go back to sleep and began thinking on these things. I was thinking about how I desire to have this faith and this attitude. I KNOW my God is able to deliver me out of this trial if he so chooses, but I kept hearing that phrase," But if not"!!! I so desire the faith and attitude that if my God chooses to not deliver me, I will still always honor, praise, and worship Him. Please help me to pray for this, not only for myself but for my family as well. It is probably harder on my family worrying about me, than it is on me. The greatest tradgedy that could come of this is not anything I could experience physically, but would be for anyone of us to become bitter. I know my God is in control and His ways are higher than ours. I know my God will see me through.
I thought about just getting up and writing my thoughts down at that time, but... I knew I had this appointment today and afterwards we were going to take the girls shopping at the mall, something I haven't felt like doing in a very long time. I wanted us to be able to have a good day together, I knew if I got up at 5 am I would be wore out all day, so I stayed in bed and eventually fell back to sleep.

Then came my appointment. The girls accompanied us to what we assumed would be a fairly routine appointment. But what we heard, once again was not what we wanted or expected to hear. Dr. Boppanna said I would need 33 radiation treatments. Because the cancer had already spread to my lymph nodes, I will also need chemotherapy. I asked if this would be 'low dose" and he didn't seem to think so. We have an appointment with the chemo doctor tomorrow at 1:00 to find out exactly what I will need. Dr. Boppanna said that radiation has the worse side effects for head and neck and brain tumor patients. He told me this will get pretty bad and will not be easy. He told me to eat everything and anything I love in the next two weeks because I will be losing my since of taste, maybe permanently. He said, because of the side effects... sore throat, burns, blisters, etc, if I loose 15% of my weight, I will have to have a PEG feeding tube. (Please,please, help us pray that I can at least eat enough to maintain my weight!) Then I asked him "the question", What are my chances of being cured if I do all this? To which he replied, I have a 60%-70% chance of making it five years. Without treatment I don't have a chance, he said. Not exactly what I wanted to hear:) especially with the girls sitting there. He said the form of cancer I have is extremely rare and there is not alot of data on it.
So, here we are tonight. We still covet your prayers for our family. I know my God is in control. His grace will be sufficient.


Rachel said...

Aunt Debbie,
I love you, and I'm praying for you.


Peggy said...

Well, Debbie, sometimes it's so hard to know WHAT to say to people. But it seems you SO have the right attitude and I'm so glad for God's grace in your life. Just please know that SO many people are praying for you and your family. Your strength,and faith and attitude IS a blessing and encouragement and God is using you probably in ways you may never know. God bless you as you continue on in this phase of your life.

Teresa Buck said...

I pray that your strength and faith will substain you in the struggles that are ahead. God is working through you for others to know his love. We love you.

misty said...

Aunt Debbie,
We Love you very much, and we are praying for you and your family
Misty & Malachi

Wilhelmina Jones said...

Just want you to know we love you and are praying for you today. My heart breaks for you and yours but I am amazed at the grace and strength you are receiving and sharing. I can not imagine going through what you have faced and how I could have the strength. I know God is able but I'm sure that grace only comes when you need it and not before. We pray for help and healing and for God's will for all of you. Know that we are praying and that our church family is praying. Love you. Willie

Scott and Kristan said...

We so love you and your family, Ms. Debbie. I wish I could make it better. My husband and I are going through some things right now, too, especially today, and one of the most helpless feelings is to watch someone you love and care so much about go through something you can't do anything about. I've watched my husband go through so many things with his girls and I have to stand by and watch. My heart aches for you as well, but please know that we love you and are praying for you. Please, let us know if there is anything more we can do. You are a tremendous blessing in my life. Kristan

Karen Crabtree said...

You know I am thinking of you everyday and praying for you. One day at a time is all I know to say this morning.