Last year I was treated for Breast Cancer. I had always thought that I could cope with most things but I wasn’t too sure about cancer. It is something I suppose that most of us dread. When it actually came to it I found God to be an “ever present help in time of need”. Ps 46:1
After being recalled to the clinic following a mammogram I had more scans; the doctor told me that there was a lump which, if cancerous, would be treatable. A nurse explained to us that we would see a consultant for the diagnosis following the results of a biopsy; she also said that if it was cancerous it would be treatable.
Rob and I walked back home through the park, hand in hand,wondering if this was what she said to everyone and if she was preparing us for what she already knew was a diagnosis of cancer. I remember us saying that cancer doesn’t change anything – my Father God loved me yesterday, He loves me today and He will always love me. Cancer is only a word. I can choose not to give it power over me.
Following the biopsy I was recalled earlier than expected, so I felt that it was not going to be good news. I wasn’t frightened I just had a sense that I would have to walk through this. The day before the appointment I was in a prayer meeting when a friend of mine prophesied over me. Part of the prophetic word was that I would walk through having breast cancer. It was so brave to bring a word like this when others had been praying for healing but I knew it was God speaking.
As Rob and I were given the diagnosis the next day we were both very calm, we had been prepared by our Father. It wasn’t a surprise to us. Both the Doctor and the nurse who were with us questioned whether we understood the diagnosis, I think because we didn’t react with any sort of shock or surprise. Actually we already knew.
There is a tremendous blessing and power in prophetic words. Of course they must always be weighed carefully. This word was in line with what God had already been speaking to us.
It not only prepared us for bad news but it also sustained us. We were encouraged that I would walk through this, I was not going to die, it was going to be ok. We have frequently reminded ourselves of this . Walking through became the motif for all I went through with my goodness bag in hand. As I underwent difficult procedures, through the operation and recovery period, radiotherapy and even the latest mammogram (all clear) I felt that all I had to do was to keep walking. I was very conscious that if God had said that I would walk through this then I could do just that. “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me “(Phil 4:13) I also meditated on the fact that the Lord is with me everywhere I go whether it is the operating theatre or the valley of the shadow of death. (Ps 23)
This word also encouraged us that God knew about us, He was in this with us. It helped us when we prayed every day for healing from cancer. We found it very helpful to pray through scriptures about healing. (A helpful book is Healed of Cancer by Dodie Osteen).
Now that a year has passed since the operation, I am reflecting that of course we are all called to walk through our lives whatever they may bring. Some days we can barely put one foot in front of another, other days we are full of energy and we could climb mountains. We do just need to keep putting one foot in front of the other and entrusting ourselves to God. Wherever we find ourselves I am confident that there is one who walks beside us cheering us on as we keep walking.