Two people I’m close to have been hit with unwelcome news the past few days.
My cousin, Tom went in for a routine heart check-up, got some unexpected high numbers, endured a heart cath, only to discover he had two blockages, in a place that prohibits stints. Today, at 53 years old, Tom is undergoing double bypass open heart surgery.
An old friend named Jeff dealt with a large cancerous tumor in his leg last year, which after many chemo and radiation treatments, as well as a successful surgery, was completely removed. Or so they thought. He has now discovered that cancer has spread into his lungs. He just returned from being a camp counselor with his church, and receives this news days after coming home.
As I pray for both Tom and Jeff, I am reminded of my own journey over the past couple of years. Health loss to cancer, then a recurrence last year, and uncertainty over whether or not I’ve seen the last of it now. Yet God keeps bringing me back to the verse He gave me at the beginning of 2014-
“Peace I give to you, My peace I leave with you. Not as the world gives, will I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27
I was reminded this morning of a line from a Casting Crowns song-
“You’re not alone, stop holding on, and just be held.”
Missy, our younger cat (pictured above), used to be very untrusting and anxious when I would attempt to pick her up. She would try to squirm away, or claw-cling to my shirt (and flesh) when I held her. After much patience, persistence, and hydrogen peroxide (for my chest and shoulder scrapes), Missy has learned she doesn’t have to hold on for dear life with me. She’s come to understand I have a firm, comforting hold on her, and she will not fall. So she relaxes more. She trusts more.
I think in the unexpected, painful turns in our lives, we as God’s people need to learn to trust our Father more. Lean into Him, instead of pushing away or claw-clinging for dear life. Trust your Father. He’s got you. Just be held.