Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Rambling about my faith, or lack thereof (and an update)

I haven't written in a while because I feel like all I talk about is cancer, and really . . . who wants to talk about that? Yuck! But that's all my life has been about lately, and I figure, you all need an update, and it's about time I put one up. So . . . here we go.

My blog's theme is this:

If the world says you can't, faith says you can!

Well, I applied this to finding the castle of my dreams, so why can't I apply this to what's happening right now? I mean, I told EVERYONE I knew, I was going to see this castle. You know, the castle that's all over my blog. I had no idea where this castle was or what it was called. My lack of knowledge didn't matter. I was determined, and I was going to see this castle

. . . and I DID!

So, why can't I have the same kind of faith and say, I'm going to be completely healed of both cancer and MS and be stronger after this transplant than I've ever been? Why can't I say that with as much determination and confidence?

I think part of my problem is . . . God.

You see, He has a will in this. The question is: What is His will? Surely He wants me healed and to stay here for my children. Right? At the same time, He may need to give us what we "need" and not what we "want." Personally, I don't think I "need" to be broken. I need to be whole and healed so I can be the best mother I can be for my kids! At least, that's what I think. That's MY WILL. But why, oh why, does my heart become heavy when I feel like fighting for my will?

I feel like it's one thing to say I'm gonna see a castle and another to say I'm gonna be healed. What's different about these two things? I remember I didn't feel like I had anything to lose when I wanted to see that castle. If it didn't happen, it wasn't the end of the world. In this case, I have everything to lose if it doesn't happen. You'd think that'd make me have more faith, more determination! What's my stinkin' problem? UGH!

Then I figured it out. How I can say the words with the same confidence.

LORD WILLING, I am going to be completely HEALED of both cancer and MS and be stronger after this transplant than I've ever been.

Hmm. I'm not feeling it. The confidence, I mean.

I think that's because I knew a mother who left a five-year-old girl behind when she died of cancer, and she had confidence that she was going to be healed.

I don't think I like leaving this in God's hands. Whew. That's bad. That's really bad. But it's true. (I'm sorry, God!) But if I'm honest, I believe that's my problem, as much as I hate to admit it. My fear is God either wants to take me from here or He wants me to be broken . . .

Okay, I have to say, just as I wrote those words "God wants me to be broken," something inside me shouted NO, THAT'S NOT TRUE! GOD DOES NOT WANT YOU TO BE BROKEN.

A brother from church said he believes I'm going to be healed because God's hand has been in this from the beginning. If you recall, my doc "just happens" to be a doc who wrote the paper with another doc on how to cure MS, and I'm undergoing the same treatments they're performing on MS patients to see if this will cure them. Just before this cancer was revealed I asked God to heal me. Well, I'd asked him to heal me a billion times, but this one moment was special. I can't explain in words what made it special, but all I know is my heart was in God's hands (there's more to it than that, but I won't get into it). I asked Him to heal me. And I believed, and still believe, He has the power to do so.

Think of it this way, God says we don't have because we don't ask. Well, I asked, and I'm still asking!

Of course, I was hoping for Him to just snap His fingers and voila, I'd be healed! But instead, I got cancer (oh, and this just happened to occur when I was also asking God for a reprieve from being sick; to put my MS in remission). sigh

Guess I'm A LOT stronger than I thought. Actually, I'm not strong AT ALL. I've only been able to get through this with HIS strength. I'm seeing that more and more. Just the other day I was complaining to my aunt who came with me to the infusion center that I'm the only one in the world who can't lose weight on chemo. (I've been irritated that I've gained at least 15 pounds since all this started.) Well, after saying that with a laugh in my voice, a woman who was a stick reached out to me and said, "I'll take some of that weight." My heart broke, and that's when I realized I needed to thank God for all this extra fat He's given me. Apparently, I'm gonna need it for the transplant. The docs and nurses keep telling me this. Then I was in the bathroom and saw a woman from the cancer infusion center walk in with her little three-year-old daughter (same age as my little Chelsea), and the woman's mother was with her (the grandmother of the three-year-old). All I saw was the woman's face as she went into the stall with her little girl, and I was talking to the grandma about the little girl, asking her age and then telling her I had a little girl the same age. Anyway, as I was walking out, something moved me to say to them, "Everything's gonna be all right." I was nearly out the door when I added, "I know it's a lot easier to hear than to feel." Then the grandmother said, "Yes, but it's still good to hear." When I came out, I told my aunt what I'd said, and she pointed out the fact that the mother of the three-year-old was very pregnant. I didn't SEE THAT! And I started crying, and I'm crying now as I write this because had I known that, I wouldn't have been able to say those words! So . . . now I pray for her nearly everyday. That everything WILL BE ALL RIGHT. Please pray for this precious mom who has this three-year-old girl and a baby on the way as she struggles with cancer. Pray she and her unborn child WINS this battle!

God . . . I am yours. I belong to You. My body is in Your hands, no other. Not the doctors at the hospital, not the nurses, but YOURS. You are my physician, my oncologist, my neurologist, my nurse, my one and only DOCTOR. Work through ALL of the nurses and doctors, please use them as Your tools to heal me. To make me whole and unbroken. To make me stronger than I've ever been before. (And will You please do the same for that pregnant woman with the little three-year-old!) I know this world is temporary and it's really not important to be "unbroken" while we're here. I know we can learn a lot and become stronger from our brokenness. It builds faith and character. Well, I've had enough, to be quite honest. I'm sorry for being such a complainer, Lord. I'm sorry for not "counting it as all joy." I'm just so tired of fighting. Fighting to grow up so I could live my own life, fighting crisis after crisis, and now THIS. Well, I'm done. You're gonna have to fight this for me, and I want You to show me what You've got. Show me Your power, Father. I know I can read all about Your greatness in Your word, but I want to see Your power in THIS . . . AND in that pregnant woman's situation. Please show us Your greatness, Lord. Your HEALING power. In Jesus' Name, Amen

Now, back to my readers.

Here's a boring update. I finish my last radiation this Friday (it's been localized directly on my tumor), and then I get a ten day break. After that, I go into the hospital on May 17th. On the 18, 19 and 20 I'll undergo full body radiation, and then on the following days, I'll get chemo. After all my bone marrow is flattened, they'll give me the donor's bone marrow. (By the way, will you pray for this guy? He has to undergo quite a bit to give me his bone marrow. It's really amazing he's willing to undergo what he's going through.) After that, we wait. We wait for my counts to go back up, then I can be sent home. But the fight isn't over after that. I'll have to go back to the hospital every other day for them to check my blood counts, and I'll be very prone to getting sick (which could be very dangerous). It won't be until around September that this donor's bone marrow will fully kick in, and that's when we'll find out if his white cells are going to attack my body or not (it could attack my skin, gut or liver). I'm praying this man's bone marrow will LIKE my body and not attack it. :-) I'm praying I won't get sick or have any complications, and well . . . I'm praying for A LOT of things.

That's it for now. Here's a song I'd like to share with all of you. It's called BLESSINGS.


  1. Yes, you WILL get better! You WILL be healed! And this wonderful man's bone marrow WILL LOVE your everyone LOVES you! As K'Sai and I sing to each other every night, I leave you with this...YOU'RE AMAZING, JUST THE WAY YOU ARE! AND WHEN YOU SMILE, THE WHOLE WORLD STOPS AND STARES FOR A WHILE, BECAUSE YOU'RE AMAZING...:-)

  2. Thank you, Tangi. You're amazing too, you know. :-)

  3. Thank you for letting us know and I am continuing to lift you up in prayer!

  4. Thank you for sharing, Sandi. Reading what you write makes me feel I am looking right into your sweet, open and honest heart. Somehow that encourages me, that we are all just very human, but seeking God! Thank you, and prayers for you, friend. TracieP

  5. Sandi, complain? You've inspired me. What an amazing God we have who can take one person like you, cuddle you in his hand, and work thru you to inspire the rest of us.

    Thank YOU! And may God's perfect will for you be accomplished! I believe.

  6. Sandi,
    We love you sooooo much, and we are confident in Jesus that He will recieve all the glory for what He is doing through all of this. Just put your full trust in Him. He has the birds eye view. He knows what He is doing. He has always made something beautiful that has been ugly. This cancer is ugly, but then..... there is GOD!!!
    Love, Uncle Jerry

  7. Praying for you Sandi. As are my parents. God is bigger than MS and Cancer. You only need faith the size of a mustard seed. You CAN do it! Remember where two or more are gathered there He is in the midst. You have many more than 2 gathered. Keep the faith. =)

  8. Sandi, I want to thank you so much for being honest throughout this awful process. Every time I read one of your posts, it brings tears to my eyes and a prayer to my heart. Yes, you doubt. Not that God is able to heal, but that healing you is in His will. That's an understandable doubt. But never does it sound like complaining, and even through all the pain I can hear your deep-rooted faith. And it really is inspiring.

    I'll focus my prayers on this upcoming battle of yours--and continue to pray thanksgiving for you, this awesome, amazing, inspiring woman I'm so proud to call my friend.

  9. Sandi, I was raised in the "Word of Faith" movement, and while I think sometimes they get out of balance, I think it might be just what you need right now. No one ever doubted if it was God's will to heal them, and there is a power with that. How can you believe in faith if you don't know if God wants you well? Sounds like a conundrum that points to some sort of fundamental issue in the belief system. I for one believe that there are plenty of scriptures on healing to stand in faith for it whole-heartedly and without reservation. Look up some Kenneth Hagin or Marilyn Hickey info. Even Joyce Myers has some good teaching on faith and healing.

  10. Hi Sandi - Whatever may or may not happen your life and soul are in God's hands. I have ceased trying to understand how God works and why. His ways are not our ways. At times like this all you can do is blindly trust. It is child-like faith alone which pleases Him. The castle you want to visit in Bavaria, Germany and I have wanted to visit it too for over 20 years! I hope your dream to see it comes true. If I had the money I would take you myself!

  11. Hi Sandi,
    Yeah, it seems like lack of faith to ask for what we want, but then I remember the example of Jesus and Paul asking for what they wanted. They both got what they wanted, God's will be done, but neither got what they asked for. Does that mean you and I should not ask for complete healing of our physical bodies? No, we should ask and ask again, and then be accepting of whatever the outcome.

    I pray for your complete physical healing and I pray for your spiritual peace in the hands of a Father who loves you enough to send his Son to die for you.

    I know you are tired. Weary in a way that only chronically ill people can understand, but you don't, won't, can't give up. And when you can no longer go on for yourself, let your family and those who love you carry you to the next step.

  12. Thank you for sharing, Sandi. You're faith is such an encouragement. It may be hard for you to see how you're encouraging others, but you are. Please keep fighting and seeking God. And you're right. His will is always best. Though from a human perspective, it isn't always easiest.

  13. Sandi;
    I am so proud of you - your honesty.
    I lived through twelve years of being literally house-bound - 16 MRI's and 6 EMG's - doctor, specialists, tests, prodding, hospitals - and on and on it went - for years. I have a list of diseases and syndromes that fills a small notebook and has led to an auto immune disorder that has me fleeing when someone sneezes. I understand the times of wondering how it could happen when being a wife and mother were so very important to me. Pain was so bad that tears on my cheeks were like needles in my face.
    Long, long story shortened:
    ONE THING I TOLD THE FAMILY and FRIENDS who bothered to stick around for so many years - THERE ARE TWO THINGS I KNOW-
    ONE: God has a reason for allowing this and has not made any mistakes. And this next didn't come to me quite as easily or as fast as the first: NOTHING - NOT ONE THING - THAT HAS HAPPENED TO ME - HAS TOUCHED ME - THAT HASN'T FIRST GONE THROUGH MY HOLY, CREATOR'S HANDS> When you create something it belongs to you and you can keep it, give it away, sell it, destroy it> Well, GOD CREATED ME - HE CAN DO OR ALLOW ANYTHING HE WANTS TO ME< WITH ME<FOR ME. I asked God to heal me but after ten years? Well, this fat gal who couldn't walk, drive, do a world of things for so long is now writing, doing NanaDayCare for her four year old grandson one day per week, blogging, cooking, cleaning (well, when I have to) and pretty much doing everything I can to get the word out - I'M ALIVE - GOD HAD HIS REASONS!
    You, have been inspiring and encouraging and don't you dare lose your honestly!

  14. Sandi, I don't even know how to say what I want to say, cause I've had terrible lack of faith at times.

    But w/regard to our frail human bodies, there's a current in human thinking that runs deep that it might not be His will. I believe that healing is His will. But boy oh boy, it's real hard to fight this deep current. It's like all the demons in hell are snidely whispering, "What makes you think you can make it?"

    And you have to battle it through. It's a whole lot easier to know you're going to see your castle when you're feeling pretty good. But when there's pain and exhaustion...not so easy to muster up the faith.

    Personally I think when the going is the roughest we have to delight in the Lord. When we're exhausted, rung out, utterly spent...we have to find out a way to delight in His presence and to allow joy into our lives. Even in little ways. If you like vanilla ice cream, make sure you get yourself an ice cream cone. Put your favorite worship music on, the CD you delight in. Watch an old Laurel and Hardy movie and laugh yourself silly. And praise the Lord.

  15. Thank you ALL for your posts and helpful words of encouragement.

    Joy, your name suits you! What a life you've had! Amazing. Thank you for giving me hope.

    Nike, I tried to post on your blog that you have a lovely book cover, but I couldn't find how to do it. Not sure what went wrong there, but CONGRATULATIONS on your recent release!

    Dina, I so want to have FAITH that HE WILL HEAL ME. I just pray it's also His will. xxx

  16. I was going to send you an email with the link to that song! It spoke to me yesterday, I had never heard it before. Today I watched a video of her explaining how she wrote that song and was even more touched by their faith and journey. I am praying for you and for God to heal you here on earth. Thanks for being so honest. You know you can always tell God how you feel b/c He loves you so much. And you can always share it with us because we love you, too!

  17. Everyone's said it so well. I completely understand your faith and that 'lack of' feeling you mention. But God is doing something amazing with your story - the story of this battle for healing. It sounds like something God would do - use cancer to rid of you of MS so that the story can be more amazing than 'humanly' possible. So, you know what? I think you're going to come out of this with a story that will bless a lot of people and bring them to the Lord and I'm excited about that.

    Praying for all the rigors of this month, for you, your family, that pregnant mother and the bone marrow doner!

  18. You don't have to fight dear sweet sister, my and Papa God are fighting for you :) LOVE LOVE LOVE YOU!

  19. I'm praying for you too, Sandi, that God will hear your prayers for healing, and that His will can be done at the same time...He gave you those words to speak to the pregnant mother. Trust, and lean on Him, not yourself, to understand. How amazing the example He has asked you to be. God bless you and yours!