God Moments

I wasn’t planning on writing this particular post, but now I feel compelled to share a few moments that gave us great comfort.

1) When we first found out about the diagnosis things were in complete disarray.  I recall distinctly having a certain conversation with Carmen as we pondered why.  That same day a few church friends came to visit.  One of them in the group basically repeats almost verbatim the conversation Carmen and I had an hour before.  When they left, we looked at each other and thought, cool.

2) One of Carmen’s good friend’s mom went to Argentina for vacation.  She took one of Carmen’s photos with her to take to a priest in that area.  This priest apparently had a gift of healing.  She waited in line for over an hour or 2.  When she finally got there she showed the priest her picture.  The priest looks it over and says “stomach cancer”.  Do I believe some people have these types of gifts?  I do now.

3) The first time I ordered Protocel a strange thing happened.  Protocel is also called Cancell.  I had never seen this word spelled this way before (or so I thought) until this day.  After I ordered it, about an hour later, I was scanning my Yahoo inbox looking for an email when I come across that word, cancell.  It was an email my dad sent me asking me to cancel his cable subscription.  He misspelled the word and added and extra “L” at the end.

After we got the scan results I began to doubt whether Protocel was doing anything.  Carmen and I discussed it and I was ready to switch to something else, but Carmen wanted to continue it.  So I agreed and ordered it again.  I entered my credit card information including the 3 digit code at the back of the card.  This number happened to be 892.  Nothing special about this number.  After work I went to go pick up the girls from summer camp, then on to the radiologist to pick up a copy of the scan.  On our way home while on the 405 (doing normal speed of 60-70mph) my mind as usual was wandering.  Like most people I get on “auto-pilot” when I drive home, especially these days.  Then something happens.  That number 892 is staring straight at me while on the freeway.  It basically “woke me up” from my day dreaming as I stared at it.  So I pulled out my wallet and credit card to see if it’s the same number I inputted a few hours ago.  It was.  The car in front of me was a loaner car from South Bay BMW.  On the lower right side of the rear windshield is that number, all by itself.  I felt that number called me to make the connection with the purchase earlier.  This obviously added to my confusion.  Was God reassuring me to stay the course in light of what we were seeing with Carmen.  Seemed contradictory.

4) After we reviewed the results of the most recent scan we were distraught and worried and doubting whether we were doing the right thing.  Of course we realize there is no right thing from this perspective.  That night Pastor Kim and his wife come over unexpectedly.  We hadn’t spoken to them in about 6 weeks.  They didn’t call, just showed up.  We told them what had happened as they prayed for us.  Olivia and Ella entertained us with the praise songs they had learned at summer camp.  Then Olivia comes back and tries to sing a final song.  Carmen was talking so Olivia hesitated a few times.  Normally she would get upset that nobody was listening to her, but this time she was patient.  When we realized she wanted to sing us another song, we stopped talking.  Not 2 lines into the song, I nudge Carmen and tell her “listen, God is talking to you right now.”  Carmen at the same time was thinking the exact same thing.  Here’s the song.

God will make a way
Where there seems to be no way
He works in ways we cannot see
He will make a way for me

He will be my guide
Hold me closely to His side
With love and strength for each new day
He will make a way, He will make a way

Oh, God will make a way
Where there seems to be no way
He works in ways we cannot see
He will make a way for me

He will be my guide
Hold me closely to His side
With love and strength for each new day
He will make a way, He will make a way

By a roadway in the wilderness, He’ll lead me
And rivers in the desert will I see
Heaven and Earth will fade but His Word will still remain
And He will do something new today

Oh, God will make a way
Where there seems to be no way
He works in ways we cannot see
He will make a way for me

He will be my guide
Hold me closely to His side
With love and strength for each new day
He will make a way, He will make a way

By a roadway in the wilderness, He’ll lead me
And rivers in the desert will I see
Heaven and Earth will fade but His Word will still remain
And He will do something new today

Oh, God will make a way
Where there seems to be no way
He works in ways we cannot see
He will make a way for me

He will be my guide
Hold me closely to His side
With love and strength for each new day
He will make a way, He will make a way

With love and strength for each new day
He will make a way, He will make a way

4) I had been trying to schedule surgery for about 3 days.  Finally they call back and tell me the date.  30 minutes later, Pastor Kim calls again out of the blue.  At this point, all I can surmise is the Holy Spirit was leading him to keep tabs on us when we need a word of reassurance.  He wanted to come over (Wednesday) to pray for Carmen, but Carmen wasn’t feeling well so we asked him to come the following day, the day I would buy Protocel again.  This time, I began to look for “signs” (I know, very immature of me).  I looked all day long, but couldn’t “find” anything.  I certainly was hoping.

That night Pastor Kim comes over and I ask him about my confusion of the seemingly strong assurances I’ve been getting for Protocel when from a rational point of view, I would’ve quit this a while back.  I couldn’t reconcile it.  So I asked him, is it possible that all of these things could be coming not from God, but from the devil?  His immediate reply was no.  He said It seemed God was telling me to stay the course.  But more important than all of these signs was our trust and faith.  Those things are all secondary and probably given to help our wavering faith.

The next morning I realized it had happened again.  This time instead of a sign while on the freeway, or my Yahoo inbox it was an actual person that I believe God sent to personally tell us.  Now, am I reading too much into this?  Could all of these things be just a mass random coincidence?  I choose to believe no.  These were God’s fingerprints.

5) One day about a week ago, I told Carmen to stop always thinking about what trips she’s going to take when she was well.  Those things are good, but I told her there needs to be a higher purpose for her life when she gets well.  That purpose was to help others who are in your same situation and to give them comfort and assurances that God cares and loves them.  She needed to begin thinking about being an ambassador specifically as it relates to cancer.  That was our literal conversation. It had been a while since we discussed this.  That same day, I just happened to be in 2 Corinthians in my daily reading.  Starting in verse 3 it reads “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.  For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.”  Carmen has a bigger purpose beyond trips to Paris and New York.  We need to get ready for it.

This journey has morphed from a medical journey to a spiritual one.  It’s not a journey with stomach cancer anymore, nor a journey with Protocel, or surgery, or chemo, or any other treatments.  This is now a journey of faith.  We can only do so much.  God is the one that will need to make things happen just when we least expect it.  We’re just waiting patiently to be picked up from the valley we’re in.

A final verse that came as a “Bible verse of the day” during this past week resonated with me, also in light of the message that Pastor Kim gave us a few nights ago.  It was from Hebrews 10: 34-36.  “You sympathized with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions.  So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.  You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.

All of these occurrences and verses were so timely these past 10 days.  I believe God will make a way for Carmen.

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “God Moments

  1. Just getting to read your blog. Prayed for Carmen today and I’m thankful that things went well (from what my mother in law tells me). Tom and I continue to pray for her and your family daily. Love you guys.

  2. Hey Carmen — it’s T’s mom. Just got this link to your hubby’s blog. T & O are in the same class so pls lmk if you need anything whatsoever. I’m sending you all my good energy and positive thoughts. In your fight to triumph, please know that you’re surrounded by love! M.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s