Thursday, July 28, 2011

Providence and promises

"Remember that in the providences of God the believer is passive, but with regard to the promises of God he is active. In the one case he is to “be still” and know that God reigns, and that the “Judge of all the earth must do right.” In the other, his faith, childlike, unquestioning, and unwavering, is to take hold of what God says, and of what God is, believing that what He has promised He is also able and willing to perform. This is to be “strong in faith, giving glory to God.” Octavius Winslow

It's been fifteen months since Danica has had a neck free from some kind of collar or brace. She is just now allowed to remove it for physical therapy. I took this photo today at her session. To see her delicate throat and neck so straight and so strong makes me buckle in the knees and weep. Oh how we have collectively hoped and prayed with each one of you for God to heal our girl. We have passively watched for His perfect will in Danica's young life. All the while we have actively claimed His promises of provision and grace and strength as we waited. Could we ever give Him enough glory?

As I type this I am wincing in pain from a back injury. I can truly barely function. I pulled something Sunday lifting my girl, and it has gone from bad to worse. I once again want to ask Him "Why?" in the same breath as praising Him. My soul cries, "How much is enough, Lord? What are you trying to accomplish through me in this place of constant physical hurt that breaks my spirit and grieves my heart?"

Tomorrow Dan will have surgery at Mercy Medical Center. We will be there at 7am for his pre-scans and his surgery will be at 9am. He has been suffering extreme abdominal pain and other symptoms for months. Finally last week they found three kidney stones, two on the right side and one very large 17mm one on the left. After the surgery he will have a stent in place and try to pass the pieces they will break up during his procedure. He will be off work next week and experiencing a good deal of discomfort until the stent will be removed.

I know we've asked a hundred times for prayer. Humbly, we ask you again to lift us up. And please don't forget to thank our God for Danica's continued healing. His promises are true. He is always good. Our hope remains.

One of our "theme songs". It's on repeat today.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Because I love her . . . like my own soul

"And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. And Saul took him that day, and would let him go no more home to his father's house. Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul." 1 Samuel 18:1-3

Several weeks ago we were blessed to have my dear friend Angie and her family here to visit for twenty-four hours. This picture of us and our sweet littlest girls, Audrey and Danica, was taken the morning they climbed into their van and pulled away. Part of my heart left again with her that morning. She has carried it for more than thirty years now. In a world of broken promises our covenant has remained. I love her, and she loves me.

I have written about her. She has written about me too. We are kindred in a way you can only understand if you have experienced it. She is a fighter and a survivor of cancer three times already. A week after her visit I got the call. "Moni, they found another mass. This time it's in my colon. It's cancer. . . again." This insidious disease is back and way too soon. She is weak and tired and afraid. My absolute first instinctual heart cry was to our God. "I will take her place. Please, release her from this cross and let me take it." This is not a noble thought made because it could not ever become a possibility. I would do it. In a second. I would lay down my life for this friend.

We were little girls playing beneath the dogwood trees and swinging as high as we could at Gypsy Hill Park. We were young girls trading well worn books, sitting on our beds writing in our journals and reading poetry out loud. We were teenagers dreaming of our futures, what men God might have for us to marry and the names of our children. We were young adults driving the gorgeous back roads of the Shenandoah Valley countryside singing at the top of our lungs with the cool evening air blowing in our hair. Little did we know how beautiful our lives would become and how bittersweet. We could have never imagined the pain and suffering or the amazing Grace that would carry us.

Angie is having her cancer removed surgically tomorrow. I am going through the motions of my own life because I must, but every single breath I take is in thought and prayer for her and her family. So many of you have stormed our God in prayer for Danica and our family. Won't you please pray for my friend tonight? Please pray for her physical healing. Please pray for peace of mind and strength of spirit as she recovers and faces chemotherapy again. Please pray for her husband Brian and her sweet children, Asher, Micah and Audrey.

I have seen real life miracles worked out through faith and love. I am on my knees pleading for another one tonight. I love her . . . like my own soul. I rest knowing He loves her more.

You may follow Angie's journey on her blog at