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I Will Trust

I came across this verse the night before my first chemotherapy treatment on October 24, 2000. I honestly don’t remember much about that night. Too much time has passed and most of that year was a blur of treatment and raising a 3-year-old and baby. I probably would not have even remembered this verse had I not written into the margin that the Lord lead me to it and dated it. I can assume I was filled with overwhelming fear. Fear of what the actual infusion would be like and how I’d deal with the side effects. Fear of what the future held for my little family.

Reading through my cancer journal reminded me that my first day of treatment wasn’t so bad. It did take 6 hours because of the experimental drug I was taking. I had to be pumped full of Benadryl before receiving the drug. Once the Benadryl was onboard the drug was administered at a very slow drip which was increased when I didn’t present any side effects. Unfortunately, within an hour I started to run a fever and break out in hives. The drug had to be stopped, more Benadryl administered and the drug started at a slower drip once again. My oncologist staid I was given enough Benadryl to knock out an elephant. I didn’t experience bad side effects from this drug other than feeling achy for a few days. What I was more fearful of was the chemotherapy.

The one thing I do remember from this day was the oncology nurse who took the time to talk to me about my fears over treatment and side effects. She encouraged me by letting me know that she was a breast cancer survivor and had been through treatment herself. She reminded me that there were some wonderful drugs to help with side effects nowadays. Above all, she told me I would get through it.

I did get through it. It wasn’t easy. I got sick within two hours of treatment instead of the next day which isn’t as common. The wonder nausea drug didn’t work on me but I was still able to use another one that got me through the difficult post treatment days. I lost my hair, gained weight, dealt with sleepless nights/agitation from the steroids and felt like I lost out on the first year of my youngest daughter’s life. BUT, I did survive.

Looking back I realize that I had no other choice but to go through treatment in order to extend my life. I had to trust that God had a plan and part of this plan was that I had to trust Him while walking though my cancer journey.

David wrote Psalm 56 while he was being attacked by his enemies and his life was being threatened. He was reminding himself to continue to trust God during this fearful time in his life. I pray that if you are facing a fearful time that you will remember to trust in the Lord. Do not take your eyes off of Him and trust that He will walk you through whatever you are facing.


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Psalm 86

This morning we’ll be reading through Psalm 86. The one verse that stand out to me is verse 11, “Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name.” From this verse we can see that how complete David’s devotion and dependence upon God really was. My bible study notes say of this verse that David was saying, “Save me from the enemy outside but also from my faulty within.”

Please read Psalm 86.

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Create In Me A Clean Heart

I thought today we’d listen to a song that went along with Tuesday’s post from Psalm 51. I remember singing this song while I was at bible school. On Sunday nights we’d meet in the gym, turn the lights low and sing praise music. This is the one of the songs I remember singing. I hope you enjoy listening to it.

Song by Keith Green

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A Quiet Escape

The cabin in this picture is located on the property where my husband’s grandparents have lived since the 1960’s. I love going to visit his grandparents and soak in the peace and quiet this location provides.

This morning I read through Psalm 55 which has a few of my favorite go to verses. Verses that have newer meaning now that I’ve read them after reading what David was going through when he wrote them. My bible study notes say this chapter is “A prayer for God’s help when threatened by a powerful conspiracy in Jerusalem under the leadership of a former friend.” It could have been written during the time David was fleeing from his son Absalom. If you like you can read the story in 2 Samuel 15-17. At this time the city of Jerusalem was in great turmoil. No one knew who to trust while false reports and slander were spreading.

David was in the thick of the danger and turmoil and longed for a retreat where he could escape from it all, My heart is in anguish within me; the terrors of death have fallen upon me. Fear and trembling come upon me, and horror overwhelms me.  And I say, “Oh, that I had wings like a dove. I would fly away and be at rest; yes, I would wander far away; I would lodge in the wilderness; Selah. I would hurry to find a shelter from the raging wind and tempest” (Psalm 55:6-8).

Have you ever felt like David? I know there are times in my life when I feel like everything is going to pot and I’m barely keeping my head above water. I’ve felt just like David describes in the above verses yearning to be able to fly away from it all and just rest. But that isn’t what happened and David didn’t get to fly away from his situation. What does he do? He turned to the One he could trust, Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved” (Psalm 55:22). 

My friends, there are times when we can escape from the storms in our lives. Those are sweet precious moments of rest and rejuvenation. But you and I both know that this is not always possible. We need to take lessons from how David reacted to not being able to escape from his problems – turn to the Lord and trust in Him no matter what is going on around us. He will sustain you through the toughest storms like he did David.

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Create A Clean Heart

This year on the Stillness blog we are reading through the bible chronologically. I haven’t done this for years and have really been enjoying it this time around. One of the things I like the most about it is the fact that reading it has given new light and meaning to the Psalms.

I’m currently reading through 2 Samuel and just came to the point in David’s life where he committed adultery with Bathsheba, got her pregnant and then set up her husband to be killed in battle. In 2 Samuel 12 we read about the prophet Nathan going to David with a story,

“And the Lord sent Nathan to David. He came to him and said to him, ‘There were two men in a certain city, the one rich and the other poor. The rich man had very many flocks and herds, but the poor man had nothing but one little ewe lamb, which he had bought. And he brought it up, and it grew up with him and with his children. It used to eat of his morsel and drink from his cup and lie in his arms, and it was like a daughter to him. Now there came a traveler to the rich man, and he was unwilling to take one of his own flock or herd to prepare for the guest who had come to him, but he took the poor man’s lamb and prepared it for the man who had come to him.’ Then David’s anger was greatly kindled against the man, and he said to Nathan, ‘As the Lord lives, the man who has done this deserves to die, and he shall restore the lamb fourfold, because he did this thing, and because he had no pity.’ Nathan said to David, ‘You are the man!'” . . . . “David said to Nathan, ‘I have sinned against the Lord’” (2 Samuel 12:1-7a & 13).

David knew he had sinned against the Lord but when I read what he had to say about it I don’t get the full depth of what he really felt until I read through Psalm 51.

“Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice. Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit” (Psalm 51:6-12).

You can just feel his yearning to be forgiven. To have his relationship with God restored. The combination of the story and what David wrote at that time gives the verses in that chapter more meaning. They make it more personal and relatable.

I was left with a sense of awe at how close to God David was. Am I this close to the Lord that I hurt deeply when I sin? Have I gotten so use to sin that I gloss over how it grieves the Lord and deeply hurts me and others?

I’m not sure what I’m trying to say but I think it comes down to remember to give yourself a heart check. To pray for a deeper desire to be closer to the Lord and a sensitivity to sin. “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.”

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Happy Mother’s Day!

This morning I wanted to honor all the women who are mothers and/or fill the role of motherhood in some way. I’ll take my thoughts from Proverbs 31:10-31.

Within this passage we read that a virtuous woman is:

Trustworthy (verses 10-12)
Provider (verses 13-15)
Industrious (verses 16-19)
Compassionate (verse 20)
Skillful (verses 21-24)
Wise (verses 25-26)
Rarely Idle (verse 27)
Is Praised (verses 28-29)

Above all she fears the Lord, Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.  Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates” (verses 30-31).

May you all have a blessed Mother’s Day!

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Come As You Are

I chose this song this week because I think we all need to hear the fact that we don’t need to be a certain way to come to the Lord. We can be broken, full of sorrow, filled with unbelievable burdens and have wandered far from where we should be.

Jesus tells us,“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-29

Note: “Come As You Are” – Written by: David Crowder, Ben Glover, Matt Maher