When It Hits Home
Yesterday, Kerrie, my sister-in-law, underwent an eight hour surgery. About six weeks ago, she went to the doctor because she felt a lump on her breast. Soon thereafter, we received the dreadful words that she has breast cancer. Doctors shared with the family that the cancer was in the “pre-cancerous stage” (stage 0) and should be able to be removed without the cancer spreading. Because of this, they postponed the surgery while giving us assurance that the cancer was localized and in its infancy stage. However, after the surgery yesterday, we were told that the cancer had spread to her lymph nodes (stage 2) and will require chemotherapy for at least the next six months. Kerrie is but 31, the mother of two young children (6 yrs. and 1 ½ yrs.), and the wife to a loving and dedicated husband.
We hear bad news all the time through the media. It is almost as if that hurricane which is so fierce and destructive comes almost weekly, and the next tsunami or earthquake will inevitably fill tomorrow’s news. When we see the ruined and even lost lives, it is a far and distant reality. We don’t know their pain, loss, and suffering. In an ever-deepening jadedness, we watch and sometimes wonder what it is like for them. But when “them” becomes “us”, everything takes on a whole new meaning and reality.
This is the case for our family. We hear of the statistics of cancer, support the fundraisers and campaigns, and wear the pink ribbons, but nothing is like having it hit in your own home. Cancer is not new to our family, as my father-in-law has seen his two sisters already pass away due to cancer while his father is currently battling prostate cancer. Imagine being a father who, in the last ten years, buried his only siblings because of cancer and now watching his daughter face the same battle.
Needless to say, our family is going through some tough times. I love my family deeply and grieved that I cannot be there with them. After work Saturday morning, I plan on catching a flight to
I am grateful for the way God has used other Christians in an exemplary and godly way to comfort, encourage, and strengthen others in the battle against cancer. Moreover, I believe this is a battle to not waste it. John Piper and Dr. David Powlison have written a powerful, heart-stirring piece called “Don’t Waste Your Cancer” which I will post in succession to this piece. It is so easy for us to focus on the cancer and not Jesus, and my prayer is that during this time, as in all times whether they be good or bad, Jesus will be glorified, his love manifested in one another, and the power of prayer will be experienced as the providential plan of God unfolds.
Thank you for remembering my family during this time. May the Lord steady our hearts and minds with a certain knowledge of his character, a confident hope in the promises in his Word, and a trust that treasures Jesus above all things, even cancer.