He’s Always been Faithful

I’ve been waiting to update readers on my health because I myself have been in a holding pattern for weeks waiting on test results. After my mastectomy September 25, chemotherapy was scheduled to begin October 27. Then, right before I was to start, a CT found a mass in my stomach that does not appear cancerous, yet may be. That prompted a train of events that included new specialists and lots of new tests, each one taking about a week or so for results, one after another, so that, here I am, seven weeks after finding the mass, finally with a plan.

The waiting for test result and doctors’ appointments nearly drove me batty. Sweet friends sent me passages on waiting that were helpful, and I can give testimony on the back end that God was kind to me in the waiting. But there is a reason that God left us a lot of promises in the Bible about waiting. Waiting is hard! And we desperately need encouragement in the middle of it.

The result of this convoluted chain of events the last few months is that new tests show I am at low risk of recurrence of the breast cancer, and chemotherapy offers negligible statistical benefit for me. In other words, I don’t need chemo after all. This is very, very good news! And, now, the waiting makes sense. I have been humbled before God through it, and I thank Him daily for this kindness to me.

Because I don’t have to complete four to six months chemo, I am now scheduled to have this new mass removed Friday, December 15. This sounds like a more involved surgery than my last one, and that one was a doozy it seemed to me. Or maybe I’m just a weenie.

After that, I’ll have five weeks of radiation, and then, there’s a very good chance that I’ll be cancer free. I’ve had enough unexpected turns in the road to know I may have some more unexpected turns ahead of me. I appreciate your prayers for this next surgery, particularly that recovery isn’t as unpleasant as they say it potentially can be. Again, I’m a weenie.

I’ve found a lot of encouragement to persevere in the stories many of you have shared with me the last few months. There is definitely a fellowship in suffering. A lot of readers have faced much longer and harder journeys than mine so far. Your perseverance has been a gift to me, helping me face something with the hard won wisdom that only comes with experience. Mostly, I appreciate that you guys keep me from running screaming from the room. Your “Buck it up, Buttercup” spirit is actually really helpful. We gotta do what we gotta do, and like it or not, I’ve got to do this. At first, I didn’t appreciate tough love in this journey, but throwing things in frustration only gets you about 15 minutes into a multi month or year journey. “Put your big girl pants on.” “You can do this.” That’s been the advice from many who’ve gone before me. God has equipped me to really believe, through Him, that I can, in fact, do this recovery too, even though the last one was pretty rough, and this one goes further and deeper than the previous one.

Maybe I am growing in strength and perseverance after all.

When I got the results of the tumor test that showed I didn’t need chemo (after waiting two frustrating weeks through Thanksgiving for the result), I felt the Spirit strongly reminding me, “I’ve always been faithful to you.”

He has. He’s always been faithful to me. In this series of convoluted turns of events, and the frustrating time of waiting between each turn, He has been faithful. I haven’t been faithful so much, but He has held me fast to Him anyway. In His covenant with Abraham involving firepots and animal parts, God took both sides of the covenant while Abraham slept. I have felt this truth deeply and personally the last few weeks. And I am thankful anew for it.

I’ve been listening to Sara Groves a lot lately, and she has helped put to words my praise and my anthem. God’s always been faithful. Though the clouds obscure His hand at times, He’s there, and He’s working. Be encouraged, friend. He has not left you an orphan to navigate your own convoluted road any more than He has me. As you get bad news upon bad news, as you wait for some answer that makes sense after a series of ones that don’t, just know that He’s faithful. And He’s good.

14 Responses to He’s Always been Faithful

  1. Tara December 7, 2017 at 8:56 am #

    I’m not nearly in the place you are- but I can’t tell you how I needed to read this – a major remodel that should have taken 3 months, has stretched into almost seven. I’m so hungry for peace and order. I just needed this today. Thank you!

  2. Anita December 7, 2017 at 11:52 am #

    Amen! I am so sorry to hear about your second surgery. That stinks. God’s message of perseverance and his unfailing love is beautiful!

  3. Claire December 7, 2017 at 7:43 pm #

    Thankful for the update and encouragement to believe in God’s faithfulness…not by sight but by my spirit says the Lord. May you have peace and strength for the journey ahead, my friend. Believe in his goodness:)

  4. Christy December 7, 2017 at 10:47 pm #

    You’re not a weenie, Wendy. Thank you for authentically sharing your journey with us. It really is encouraging to hear how God has been faithful to you in the storm. Praying for your surgery and the recovery.

  5. R.J. Anderson December 8, 2017 at 7:04 am #

    Thanks for this update, Wendy. We’ve never talked and I’ve only once commented before (on an old post, I’m not even sure you would have seen it), but I discovered your blog a few months ago and have been enjoying it. I’ve been praying for you regularly since your diagnosis, and am so glad to hear you won’t have to go through chemo. I will continue to pray that your next surgery goes well and that you are reassured and reminded of God’s grace and mercy throughout your recovery.


  6. Kristin December 8, 2017 at 3:58 pm #

    Wendy, I’m praying for you today, as you prepare for and have your surgery. Thank you for sharing your life, and for this reminder of God’s faithfulness. I’ve been so blessed by you.

  7. Kristin December 8, 2017 at 3:59 pm #

    Oh – PS I read Imperfect Disciple after you wrote about it — I loved it! It is now one of my favorite books.

    • Wendy December 8, 2017 at 5:36 pm #

      Oh, I’m so glad to hear this!

  8. Wendy December 8, 2017 at 5:36 pm #

    Thanks, all, for your prayers and encouragement. They truly mean a ton to me.

  9. Wendy Emberley December 8, 2017 at 9:10 pm #

    Love that Sarah Groves song. Not sure if you’ve ever seen Kristyn Getty’s poem, The Watches of the Night. The last verse still brings me to tears just as it did many times during my own dark time.

    I look towards the wintering trees
    To hush my fretful soul
    As they rise to face the icy sky
    And hold fast beneath the snow
    Their rings grow wide, their roots go deep
    That they might hold their height
    And stand like valiant soldiers
    Through the watches of the night

    And no human shoulder ever bears
    The weight of all the world
    But hearts can sink beneath the ache
    Of trouble’s sudden surge
    Yet far beyond all knowing
    There’s a strong unsleeping light
    That reaches ‘round to hold me
    Through the watches of the night

    I have cried upon the steps that seem
    Too steep for me to climb
    And I’ve prayed against a burden
    I did not want to be mine
    But here I am and this is where
    You’re calling me to fight
    And You I will remember
    Through the watches of the night
    You I will remember
    Through the watches of the night.

  10. Amy in PA December 17, 2017 at 1:18 pm #

    Read this on the 17th, so hopefully your surgery went well and without complications. I am praying for your recovery, that it may be as speedy as it needs to be!

    I am entering a new stage of my life – my arthritis is preventing me from employment outside the home, and many of the things at home that need doing, I cannot do anymore. But there is one thing that I can do – PRAY! I don’t need arms or legs, or even a mouth or eyes (although praying aloud is a pleasure) to pray!

  11. Wendy December 19, 2017 at 9:24 am #

    Thank you, all! I’ve read every comment and each has been encouraging to me over the last week. I am home from the hospital. The surgery did not have the complications it could have had, and I am very thankful today. Still a lot of pain, but I expect that to get better day by day.

  12. Antonio December 20, 2017 at 2:01 am #

    I’ll be praying for you Wendy! Really God’s Always been Faithful!

  13. benny December 22, 2017 at 11:01 am #

    good post