You picked the wrong girl.

I started reading “Its not about the bike” by Lance Armstrong tonight. The only words I can form are “wow”. I, first of all, had no idea that he had brain cancer- I knew he had testicular cancer, but I never knew he had brain cancer.

I tend to have a problem reading books from the begining. I start by thumbing through and try to get a feel for the book, reading the chapter titles etc.

Chapter 5: Conversations with Cancer literally leaped off the page. The below excerpt brought tears to my eyes. Tears of strength and determination.

There was a dis-quieting intimacy to the idea that something uninvited was living inside my head. When something climbs straight into your mind, thats way personal. I decided t get personal right back, and I started engaging in an inner conversation with it (cancer). I tried to be firm in my discussions. “You picked the wrong guy” I told it.

I laughed, because I literally had almost the same exact conversation with my tumor on April 14th. I thought it was odd that I actually talked to this thing, speaking directly to it.

He later wrote something on belief that caused me to almost stand up in my living room and cheer:

I know this much: I believed in belief, for its own shining sake. To believe in the face of utter hopelessness, every article of evidence to the contrary, to ignore apparent catastrophe- what other choice was there?
So I believed.

I am not sure if Lance and I share the same reason for belief, but the underlying belly of our determination is the same.

Life.

Whether that be 20 more years, or complete healing tomorrow. This isn’t about a diagnosis, this isn’t about the hardships I and my family are facing. This is 110% about God and His sovereign provision. This is about his undying and unconditional love for his children. This is about being completely dependent on Him.

Its about belief. Belief in His promises, not just in what he can provide. Belief in his presence, not just in his provisions. Belief in his sovereignty, amidst all of the questions of why.

I believe.

God is not in the business of concerning himself with only our physical needs. This is so much more than that. He is so much bigger than that.

I am not a “name it, claim it” kind of gal- but I do believe that Christ has given me the power to tell this mountain to move. I believe that he has given me the authority to battle this not only in a physical sense of the word, but spiritually also.

Whether this tumor is here next month, or next year, this battle is not only about the flesh. It is about the soul.

It will not steal my joy. It will not rob me of my love for my Savior. It may bring me to my knees, but it will not bury my hope.

It picked the wrong girl.

With all this going for us, my dear, dear friends, stand your ground. And don’t hold back. Throw yourselves into the work of the Master, confident that nothing you do for him is a waste of time or effort. -1 Corinthians 15:58

I cling to that. The pain and suffering I have experienced this last week is not a waste. The knowledge that I have a brain tumor is not a waste. These things have brought me so much closer to my Savior…

And that is what it is all about.

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Comments

  1. Praying for you as you travel to the wonderful state of Minnesota and the homey town of Rochester. Try to enjoy your stay. Canadian Honker has a great menu. They’re right across the street from Mayo-ville. Berean Community Church is a great place to visit if you or your husband would like to join us consider this your official invite! 🙂

  2. Amen! I came via Adventures in Babywearing… we’ll be praying!

  3. I am so blessed to have come to “know” you through your blog. You are an inspiration to me on so many levels. You amaze me, really. I’m praying for you often each day. Your family is SO blessed to have such a wise, cariing wife/mother. And I know they bless you as well. Even in this, it is so evident they are being raised in love and deep conviction.

  4. AMEN & AMEN!
    Still praying for you and yours.
    Love in Christ,
    Evanna

  5. Dear Heather,
    I’ve never written but I’ve certainly been checking in and praying for you daily. God is using you in a powerful way. I’m a firm believer in the fact that He never allows any experience, positive or negative, that we go through to be wasted. He has already used your situation to touch so many lives and He’s speaking so powerfully through your faith and witness.

    You have thousands of people you will never know on this side of heaven who are praying diligently for you. I’m one of them.

    Blessings,
    Becky

  6. Good stuff. Stay strong in HIM.

  7. Heather,

    I “found” you through a series of links, as is usually the story in the blogosphere. I just want you to know that I am praying for you and your family. For some reason, God has laid your oldest daughter, Easton, most heavily on my heart. So, please know that some stranger out here in cyberspace is holding her up along with you.

    I can’t imagine what it must be like to know that a tumor has taken up uninvited residence in your brain. I will say that, from here on the outside, 20 years seems like a reprieve of sorts, especially since, as others have pointed out, there could be monumental advances in treatments in that time. My dear friend’s father went less than 3 months from diagnosis of brain tumor to death. I think when I first read your posts about your diagnosis, I had that in my head and was terrified on your behalf. I am glad to hear that your doctors are telling you that you will not be missing your children’s childhoods. I also understand that it’s not enough for you–you want to make it to wrinkly old lady stage, with great-grandchildren clamoring to sit on your lap, as I do.

    I don’t want to sound the way some of my well-meaning friends sounded when I had my miscarriage–all the “at leasts” got really annoying and even painful. Please don’t think this is an “at least.” I just want you to know that I think this is a bit of breathing room from the Lord, and I will hopefully remember to keep on praying for you for the next 20 years, that your reprieve will extend to 60 years or more.

  8. Heather,
    I found your site and heard about the season God has you in – from Amanda (Baby Bangs). I am friends with her and her mom!
    Know that I will be believing God with you for a miracle. I am the designer of the BELIEVE GOD bracelet that Lifeway sells and would love to send you one as a reminder to BELIEVE GOD for your miracle. Can you please contact me?

  9. Jeannine says:

    Your faith and determination are amazing! I feel so blessed to have been led here. You continue to be in my prayers.

  10. Dear Heather…

    I am so glad you got that Lance Armstrong book and is reading it. That was the one I was telling you in one of my previous comment…

    I read that book about 3 years ago. I was in Borders, just browsing, when I noticed that book. My husband is a Cancer survivor and I like Lance so I immediately bought the book. Wow – many of the pages caused tears to flow in my eyes. What a trial…but most importantly, what courage, belief and determination!

    My husband had Hodgkins Lymphoma about 25 years ago. It was malignant and fatal then. During treatment he was asked to sign a waiver…he was told that the medication they were using on him were all experimental and there’s no guarantee he will live. He signed the waiver. He wasn’t a Christian at that time but many were praying for him. 25 years later and still counting, my husband is still here alive and living an abundant life in Christ!

    I know you believe. I believe. We believe!

    To God be the Glory!

    ((((HUGS))))

  11. Heather,

    Amen! As I spent time in prayer for you and Keli this morning I called forth the tumor to dry up at the root, just as Jesus cursed the fig tree and it died, we curse this tumor and command that it die and bear no fruit in your body. I also called forth perfect functioning of organs and immune system for Keli. God is faithful to His Word and I praise God that you know of His faithfulness.

    Psalm 103:1-5 states:
    “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless His Holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul and forget none of His benefits; who pardons all your iniquities, who heals ALL your diseases (including tumors, immune system and functioning of organs and every infirmity) who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with loving-kindness and compassion; who satisfies your YEARS with GOOD things, so that your youth is renewed like the eagle.”

    Praise God for His Word. I love you my sister in Christ. Be healed in Jesus Name!

    Tracy Hurst

  12. Your lifes trials are being used for God’s glory. I honor your faith in our Lord and your boldness to keep fighting. I will be praying for you and your family.
    A new blogger,
    Ginger

  13. If I was not at work, I would have been standing and clapping while reading this! You go girl! You tell that tumor Who is Boss! God is!!!!!

  14. Oh Heather, how we can all learn from your words and scripture you quoted. I truly believe this tumor did pick the wrong girl. I love your kicking and screaming attitude, it is awesome.

    This is my favoirte verse from the Bilbe, one I repeat to myself many times during the week and sometimes daily or minute by minute.

    And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28

    Hang in there, you are doing an awesome job dealing with this challenge in your life.

    Blessings,
    Julie

  15. Heather!
    As you know, I’ve been away from blogging for a while now – missed it terribly, I have; but the busyness of life, despise it as I do, just crept in on me.
    I got a couple of messages from folks who read your blog and followed the link over to my place.
    You are definitely in my prayers!!!
    I’m at work at the moment, so I don’t have a chance to catch up on your site until later, but I will…
    And know that I (along with tons of other folks who love you and your family) are praying and *standing with you*!!!

  16. Take THAT, you vile tumor, you! Picked the wrong girl, indeed… and you’ve got the right God to prove it. That tumor is TOAST, I tell you!

  17. I found your blog through my sister in-law after she started one for my sweet baby niece Halle Grace – born at 23 weeks.
    She is a true, living testament, as is your daughter of the miracles of God. How precious it must be to look into your daughters eyes each day and know that she is a gift, wonderfully formed by God and given to you to give you a glimpse of the hope and future that God holds for you and your family. Keep putting on that armor of the Lord Heather…everyday…even when it’s hard…your brothers and sisters in Christ will help you arm yourself against the fear and doubt that will come. You are a present day Job – and God will uphold you by His righteous right hand – Job 1:8
    Then the LORD said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” There is no one like you Heather, you are blameless and upright. Keep on livin’ in the word.

  18. Oh, Heather…**tears**…just…

    You Rock, gal, because Jesus IS Your Rock!! Keep standin’ firm on Him…and He will lift you UP!!

  19. What Cancer (and Tumors) Cannot Do
    Cancer (and tumors) are so limited …
    They cannot cripple love,
    They cannot shatter hope,
    They cannot corrode faith,
    They cannot eat away at peace,
    They cannot destroy confidence,
    They cannot kill friendship,
    They cannot shut out memories,
    They cannot invade the soul,
    They cannot reduce eternal life,
    They cannot quench the spirit,
    They cannot lessen the power
    of the resurrection.
    Anonymous

    AND THEY CAN’T TAKE THE LIGHT OUT OF OUR HEATHER!!! JESUS SHINES IN THIS GIRL, TUMOR…SO BE WARNED!!!

  20. Your faith glorifies your Saviour. Still praying…much love.

  21. “YOU GO GIRL!”

    GOD BLESS YOU AND GOD BLESS YOU! It is so moving to read what you write, to know that you are standing in the face of adversities the likes of which I have never imagined and ‘hear’ the conviction and faith dripping off every single word. I don’t doubt that you have your moments, but I praise GOD for all the ways that He is providing for you, physically and emotionally and spritually. I pray that GOD would rain down blessing upon you and your family, today especially in the form of financial support and prayers, but also for each day that you travel on this journey that he would bless you in many unexpected ways with your spiritual growth and your physical health and traveling and in every sort of thing.
    Cling to what is good and right and true. Cling to God and His word; He will lead you through this “valley of the shadow of death” and He will comfort you with his supernatural peace and joy. God bless you.

  22. Most of us think about a mountain being shaken and falling into the sea. But I think about Moses going up to the mountain to meet with God and the voice of the Lord causing the mountain to shake, Moses to glow and the people to run in fear. For you”Joyful Spirit” as you meet with God on the mountains and the gound beneath you begins to quake, my prayer is that the Cancer will flee from God’s presence just as the people did! You GLOW GIRL!
    Because of Jesus, Bobbie

  23. Heather, I just found your blog and what a blessing you are!

    What a privlege to read your thoughts and about your confidence and faith in our Lord! You are glorifying Him in your words and attitude–I’m sure He couldn’t be more pleased with you.

    I will be standing with you in prayer dear sister.

  24. It’s almost like the tumour becomes a life on its own, isn’t it? My sister and I named mine “Patty Addy” (short for pituitary adenoma). Now when we talk about “Patty”, we both know “who” we’re discussing without bringing it out in the open… you find ways to cope, that’s for sure. Not that I have gone through ANYTHING like you are….but it’s funny how people often have the same reactions to things….:-)
    STILL praying for you daily, He is ALWAYS with you, holding you up.

  25. Heather, you inspire me with your strength, your determination, your faith. God bless you and continue to keep you strong. You remain in my prayers.

  26. Heather,

    I just started reading your blog last week as a result of Dawn Z’s post on prayingthemhome. Just wanted you to know that I am praying for you my sister and that God is using you mightily to minister to many, myself included!

    2 Corinthians 4:8We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; 9persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 10We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. 11For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body. 12So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you…16Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

  27. Each day I have started to write this message and each day I stumble with the words and with my own feelings. You see, 14 years ago, while I was working at Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale AZ, I suffered a miscarriage and went for a D&C. I remember a sort of dreamlike expereince in the recovery room, where I could hear voices saying things to me, but couldn’t respond. I woke up 2 days later in the hospital. I had experienced status epilepticus, a series of seizures that nearly took my life. In the work-up to find the source of the seizures, they discoverd I had a brain tumor. Inoperable is what they told me. I was fortunate because the seizures were easily controlled by medication. Here it is now, 14 years later, and the tumor has grown very little. The doctors think it has been there most of my life and is just ‘part’ of me. It may begin to grow at any time. There are no answers. That period of my life was very dark, very scary. I look back on it now and wonder so many things. My heart goes out to you. I feel your pain, I can sense your strength. You amaze me!

  28. So glad to hear the dizziness is better. That’s SOMETHING, right?

    I just thought I’d let you know that no, Lance is not a Christian, although his ex-wife Kristin is quite a strong one! In fact, I believe that was one reason they split to tell you the truth. HOWEVER, there are many, many of us who are still praying that he will one day recognize the true source of his healing and proclaim it far and wide!!! As I am praying you will be doing soon as well! I started to ask when you first announced your tumor if it was the same as Lance’s…weird, huh?

    I have not read his book, but have bought it for others. It sounds like maybe I should read it. It sounds like it’s pretty good!

    Hope you are feeling better and better!

  29. Alph & Kathryn says:

    Heather and family.

    Asking for Gods peace on you thru this time. You are fearfully and wonderfully made. Reas in this.

    God speed,

  30. heather,

    just wanted you to know that i have been thinking about you for a few days now. i heard about you through BooMama’s blog and many others too. I think the main thing God is speaking to so many of us about is: the power of prayer. HE is calling us to intercede for you. we don’t know one another, but i’m a m—ary in india and i’m praying for you. your story has traveled 1,000’s of miles.
    you AMAZE me & your Love and Faith for God encourages me.

  31. God is so good
    God is so good
    God is so good
    He’s so good to me!

  32. You know what? I think that God is already confirming to you that this thang indeed picked the wrong girl! I think this whole thing is about ONE thing, dear Heather, and that’s HIS GLORY. I think very soon, it will be gone. And we will be whooping and hollering over it! I wrote in my blog a while back about why God sometimes takes time with things and I compared it to the vultures circling to call attention to what they found. I think God is waiting to let people hear your story AND then HIS GLORY will be seen in you and your sweet family.
    Blessings on you and prayer, too! May it be So, Lord!
    Holly

  33. I don’t believe it picked the wrong girl. I believe God ALLOWED it in your life PRECISELY BECAUSE you are so sold out on HIM. He is allowing YOU to be the TOOL to show the WORLD HIS GLORY. What an honor. He knew that YOU could handle it. He knows that YOUR HEART IS IN THE RIGHT PLACE. He will not give us more than we can handle. He made you strong and He has faith that you will lean on Him and show the world what REAL STRENGTH is.

  34. May God bless you and your family more than he has already. I will pray for you and with you…sending lots of love my way from our family to yours.
    God Bless and Amen

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