Thursday, October 21, 2010


Matt and I had a long, but very helpful meeting yesterday with an excellent surgical oncologist in Bluffton, South Carolina who will hopefully perform my surgery. When we got home last night we were both physically and emotionally exhausted. So we spent an hour and a half rearranging furniture in our house! After a day which seemed to raise more questions than answers, this gave us something objective and tangible to accomplish. Sometimes it can be harder dealing with unknowns than with having all the facts; even if the facts are not good, at least they are known. Of course, this is the case with more than just health is full of unknowns.

But I as a Christian can have joy in the midst of unknowns because God, my rock, gives me peace as I trust in Him. As Isaiah 26:3-4 says,
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock.
Having that God-given peace, I am able to take joy in the unknowns of life...and in the hard things that are known. Joy doesn’t necessarily mean happiness. Joy runs deeper than our circumstances and comes only from knowing Jesus Christ and what He accomplished for us on the cross.

For the past several weeks Matt and I have been listening (almost non-stop) to some hymn CD's by a band called Page CXVI. In fact, I brought my iPod to the hospital and was listening to their song “Joy” both before and after I gave birth to Samuel. The song is beautifully somber, restless, and hopeful in its spirit. It deals with the need for joy even in the midst of life's hardships and uncertainties. These powerful words are sung in the most climactic moments of the song: "I can't understand and I can't pretend that this will be alright in the end. So I'll try my best and lift my chest to sing about this joy, joy, joy." The song then moves into a beautifully simple refrain of "It is Well with My Soul."

As you can imagine, this song became especially applicable to me a few days ago when I found out about my cancer. Could I have the same joy in this cancer that I had when I held my newborn baby? Can I have joy even when I don't understand God's ways? Can I have joy even when things might not be "alright" in the end? YES. But as I read Isaiah 26:3-4 I am reminded, this joy is not just being optimistic or denying reality. This joy can only come from God as I trust in Him.

I e-mailed Page CXVI to tell them about how this song has encouraged me in the past week and to see if I could post this song on my blog. They kindly agreed. Tisha, the vocalist, replied saying,
Thank you for your email and for sharing your story. I will be praying for comfort, healing, and that you will continue to have joy in this time. I would be honored if you used "Joy" in your blog!
Click here to listen to "Joy." Thanks Page CXVI!