My husband and I waited in the cold, sterile exam room. We knew the cancer was back; a biopsy had confirmed it. We had talked with two different oncologists, and I had recently undergone a very long day of tests and scans to determine the extent of the recurrence.
Now we waited for the specialist, hoping he would confirm what the other doctors had speculated…another surgery, possibly chemotherapy.
The specialist–the one everyone claimed was THE GUY for this–arrived with his entourage of medical personnel. (Apparently when one is THE GUY, people want to follow you around and learn how you do what you do.) Once the introductions and pleasantries were done, he cut straight to the chase. “The type of cancer you have is non-curative. We need to start chemo right away. Hopefully we will be able to find something that works and keep it from spreading.”
There it was…expressed as casually as if he was ordering lunch.
He launched into what I’m sure is routine for him… a barrage of information: recommendations of treatment, names of various chemo drugs, treatment schedules, options for clinical trials, etc.
Once I was capable of focusing on his words again, this is what I understood: They could remove the three tumors they found, but they have not yet discovered how to keep this type of cancer from returning.
This was not how it was supposed to go. I was OK with another surgery, if needed. I had begun to accept the idea of chemotherapy, if that’s what it took. But non-curative?
Somewhere between the hospital and the highway to go home, God leaned in and whispered, “Do you think I’m big enough?”
It was in that moment that all those flannel board stories I heard as a kid, all the late-night devotions and sermons over the years started to pay off. Something “clicked” inside of me and I realized the God I had prayed to for healing was the same God who created our universe out of nothing. (Genesis 1)
He’s the One who blew back the waters so a nation of people could cross on dry land. (Exodus 14)
He’s the One who helped a young boy with a few rocks defeat a seasoned soldier. (1 Samuel 17)
He’s the One who kept three Hebrew boys from being consumed by fire. (Daniel 3)
He’s the One who healed a woman of a lifelong medical condition. (Mark 5)
He’s the One who called Lazarus from the grave when he’d already been dead four days. (John 11)
Because those are more than fun stories to spark the imagination of children in Sunday school. They are actual, historical events. Moments when God, who exists far beyond our confines of space and time, stepped into the everyday moments of ordinary people. And miracles happened.
This God. He is THE GUY for my situation.
While I was shocked at the diagnosis, it did not shock God.
While doctors are baffled by this type of cancer, God is not. He is the Author of all life. If He can reverse a chronic medical condition and call a dead man from the grave, He can correct a few cells in my body that have gone awry. In the words of a friend of mine, “Cancer’s got nothing on the Creator of the universe!”
I love how Mercy Me puts it in their song, “You Are I Am.” If you’ve not heard the song, I encourage you to take a few minutes and listen to it now. You won’t regret it:
This same God knows your situation, too. Whatever you face today. He is not shocked by it. He is not scared or intimidated by it. He is (more than) big enough.
This post is part of the series, Embracing Hope. In the coming weeks, we’ll look at why we can put our hope in God, how we put our hope in God, and what we can do when it feels all hope is lost. Won’t you come along for the journey? Consider subscribing via e-mail so you can receive new posts delivered directly to your inbox! Simply enter your e-mail address in the box to the right. To view the entire series, click here. Photo source