The Lord has spoken to my heart that I am in a time of “staggering not; and a time of full persuasion”. I am to focus on these two areas now. The latest scan from November showed that the cancer is still in my body, but not as pronounced as it was in September’s image.
I’ve been told the cancer that spread from my colon to my peritoneum is hard to locate on scans. Cells from my peritoneum actually float in my abdominal cavity, thereby moving from one location to another. The good news from this report, however, is that these cells have not found a resting place on any other organ, nor are they in my bloodstream or bones. No excess fluid was found in the abdomen, which is a barometer for how well the chemo is working.
As many of you know, I am podcasting a series called “Healing for Everyday”—thirty one episodes featuring the healing Scriptures God has given me since my diagnosis. One of those is Matthew 15: 13:
“But He (Jesus) answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up.”
Jesus is addressing the man-made traditions of the Jews, but the one revelation of Scripture can have many applications. In my case, God gave me this passage to address something just as dangerous as the letter of the law that kills: cancer.
When I wield this Scripture in warfare, I “tell” the cancer that it cannot stay in my body because God did not put it there. In addition, I say that as it leaves the peritoneum and abdomen, it will not find any other resting or nesting (hiding) place in my body.
In its uprooting, I also declare that it is not just dead by the fruit, but also by the root. In other words, it’s not just a season of non-bearing—in which case it will return—but it is dead at the roots.
Jesus spoke the same thing to the fig tree in Mark 11: 12-14; 19-24:
“And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, he was hungry: And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find anything thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet.
“And Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever. And his disciples heard it. “And when even was come, he went out of the city. And in the morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree dried up from the roots. And Peter calling to remembrance saith unto him, Master, behold, the fig tree which thou cursedst is withered away. And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.
“For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.”
Of course, this is in direct contradiction to what my oncologist in Abilene believes. At least his approach is not like the Doctor of Death in Dallas who curtly told me in July I had six months to live.
Despite my high regard for my doctor, who is compassionate and highly skilled, his words are not the final authority in my life—God is. He alone determines the number and quality of my days as I live in concert with his Word and purpose for my life.
Dr. Kalla says my condition is incurable, and the best he can do is chase the cancer with chemotherapy. His best arsenal can only cripple it so that I can have months (perhaps years) free from the debilitating effects of the drugs before the cancer cells recover and began to multiply again.
How many rounds of chemotherapy I can take will depend on how well my body can hold up under the infusions. At some point, he warns, my body will no longer be able to withstand the drugs and I will enter palliative care.
I reminded him how he once said I was an extraordinary patient—one for the medical journals—because my case never seemed to follow the standard rules for how cancer acts and patients respond.
For instance, my blood work remains solid. He told me the numbers are in range for someone who has NEVER gone through chemotherapy. Thank God!
I believe it’s because I wield two Scriptures as a sword in regards to my blood work. These passages declare that God is upholding my bone marrow and its function:
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
“Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.” (Proverbs 3:5-8)
“…He (Jesus) is upholding all things by the word of his power…” (Hebrews 1:3)
Notice that all things are not being upheld by the power of His word, but the WORD of his power. It is as when God said, “Light, be!” It came forth and is continuing-- expanding throughout the cosmos--because the Lord hasn’t told it to stop.
Thus, I informed my oncologist that I wasn’t through breaking the medical profession’s rules. I had a few more planned to surprise them all!
So now, I must focus on staggering not and being fully persuaded, as the Lord instructed. He knows, based on this latest report that says the cancer is still there, that the enemy will try to get me to waver.
In fact, that’s exactly what the word “stagger” means in the Greek: waver. James 1:5-7 reveals the consequences of repeated wavering:
“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
“But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord.”
The wisdom being sought in these passages refers to seeking instructions from God as what to do in the midst of an affliction or trial.
Ralph Martin, noted author and an associate professor of theology at Sacred Heart Seminary in Detroit, Michigan, comments:
“If any of you lacks wisdom - The wisdom in context is specifically regarding what God is accomplishing through the trial(s). James is making the point that we don't have to be perplexed by the trial and try to face it with our own natural, fallible wisdom.
"Instead, James says that if we find ourselves in a trial and lack spiritual insight, our "reflex" should be to go to our Father and ask Him for His wisdom, which is the practical application of His Word to everyday situations.” (Martin, R. P. Vol. 48: Word Biblical Commentary: James. Dallas: Word, Incorporated)
As a result, the wisdom I pursued has cautioned me--at this given point in my recovery--to stagger not and make sure I am fully persuaded.
Right after receiving this insight, I awoke this past Monday morning unable to walk without staggering. My legs were weak and my gate unsteady throughout the day. Once again, satan had simply confirmed that I heard from God correctly. I did not own his attack as truth, but stood against his wiles with my shield of faith that quenches every fiery dart (Ephesians 6:10-18). Today as I write this update, my legs are once again strong.
Dr. Kalla's plan is to give me my tenth infusion on Tuesday, Dec. 10; then, perhaps one more around January 3. After that, George and I are hoping to get to Hawaii to visit the grandchildren later in the month. My husband can only stay two weeks because of work, but my intentions are to stay for several more weeks before I have to return home in March for a follow-up scan.
These dates are fluid, however, due to my son’s schedule. In the Army, they often have field maneuvers that keep them away from home for weeks; and as we’ve learned, the military can schedule these without warning.
Nevertheless, we will get there at some point. And while there, I refuse to look over my shoulder for another attack. (When I completed my first round of twelve infusions, the cancer began to multiply again and returned in less than sixty days.)
That was then; this is now. God says my prayers are effectual and fervent, and that I will have those things I declare…things not presumptuously claimed, but those precious things purchased for me by the Blood of Christ and approved by God for me to call forth at this time.
How do I know this to be true?
1 John 5:14,15:
“And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.”
God’s Will is very clear regarding healing for His children. Even our bodies were created with a built-in healing mechanism—the immune system. Nonetheless, living under the effects of the Fall has weakened and compromised its ability to function optimally. But we are not left without help!
God heals our bodies in three ways:
spontaneously (through a working immune system)
by stimulation (diet and lifestyle changes, along with natural supplements or medicines that repair and recharge the immune system, restoring the body to working order)
supernaturally (usually when the disease, infirmity, or injury is beyond the healing ability of the immune system and the gift of science); often coming in the form of a spoken word, laying on of hands, intercession, a prayer cloth, a prophetic word, etc.—all mentioned and demonstrated in the Bible.
So, it was settled from the beginning of this journey: God wanted me well. He made a blood covenant to secure Salvation for the whole of me—body, spirit, and soul. What I needed was to understand the WAY of God for my situation-- how to walk through to my healing.
I sought him for answers to such practical questions as; do I take chemotherapy or go an alternative route? Which oncology clinic is the best for me and where? Which surgery team should I choose?
The answers came through my patient submission for guidance. He has not failed me in this pursuit. I could tell you many stories that confirmed my steps are divinely ordered.
Go back to the passages in James. When I asked for wisdom regarding my situation, God was not vague but very detailed. He gave me specific words (Rhemas—right now, God-breathed words) to stand on from His Word (All the Scriptures--the Logos).
He was not condescending or judging. He has generously given me everything I need to know for my situation, including the enemy’s intents and the faith of His Son to resist them.
Paul wrote in his letter to the Philippians, verses 12-14:
“Now, brethren, I desire you should know, that the things which have happened to me, have fallen out rather to the furtherance of the gospel:
“So that my bands are made manifest in Christ, in all the court, and in all other places; And many of the brethren in the Lord, growing confident by my bands, are much more bold to speak the word of God without fear.”
This thing concerning me is also falling out for the furtherance of the Gospel. My story is being read around the world. Can you believe it? From my little laptop in Comanche, Texas, my website is getting visits from people in China, Malaysia, Russia, and all over the United States. Praise God!
And it is the prayer of my heart that those who read my posts, and those who pray with and for me, will grow more confident in Christ; seeking and speaking a “right now” Word of God that begins to dispel darkness and disease from their lives.
It is also my desire that they not stop with themselves; but dare to look—even before their personal prayers are answered—into the desperate eyes of a world famished for the Words of Life...then open their mouths.
“…open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it.” (Psalm 81:10)