I take a moment to share a personal story …
In 2014 my family received devastating news on my 6 year old daughter. I took her in for an emergency room visit thinking she was dehydrated but soon learned she had acute lymphoblastic leukemia T-cell. Within an hour of this news we were sitting in the intensive care unit trying to regain our composure. We were caught off guard as there were no warning signs and no time to prepare for that type of news.
I can recall a three year period questioning if she would live through the night. I found myself afraid to step away and go get food in the cafeteria. After several months of chemotherapy and infections, fevers, mouth sores, blood pressure spikes, seizures and loss of vital signs that caused her to code blue, I reached my breaking point… I was watching the chemotherapy take my child to a lifeless state and my hope began diminishing. I knew there was absolutely nothing I could do to heal her, all I could do was keep praying and keep my faith. Recognizing how distraught and delirious I had become I accepted my mom’s offer to stay the night which allowed me go home to my other children and try to regroup. The whole drive home I was praying that the Lord keep me awake and that my children could not tell I had been crying. ( It was so important to me that my children saw me hold it together and the faith I taught them to have would be seen in me…) I learned quickly that our faith must be exercised.
As a parent when we see our children drowning we run to the one who is in the most danger first then make our way to the others. What do we do when they all are drowning at the same time? (This is where I found myself and knew I had to call out to the Lord before I drowned too.) I went into my bedroom and prayed like never before. I surrendered my entire family over to the Lord as I knew I held no power of my own. It was during that prayer the Lord revealed to me how I was fighting for control over a situation I was unequipped to handle. The rage inside me was fighting for control I desperately wanted. After a good cry, I cleaned myself up and decided to sit outside for some fresh air. My young son was cold and asked me to build him a fire.
Building a fire for my son was the turning point and the renewing of my hope… As we were going through our firewood pile my hand touched something soft and wet. (I yanked my hand back thinking it was a snake.) A dead piece of oak tree was hollowed out. It was so dead that as I picked it up it was crumbling to pieces falling at my feet. What grabbed my attention was a dead, hollow shell of what use to be a strong tree, had green grass growing from the inside where it was hollow and sprouting out of the top. The grass was actually holding the dead piece together.
It was at that moment I realized I was only seeing my daughter’s shell decaying but what I couldn’t see was God sprouting life on the inside of her. All the prayers we all were saying and people praying all over were working but because I couldn’t see life I believed life was fading away… ( My daughter is almost 10 years old now and looking at her no one would ever know she had cancer or went through the things her little body went through… Full remission… Full of life and sprouting up like a weed… Happy, energetic, loving, grateful, playful, and a walking miracle…)
Some of you reading may feel dead inside due to feelings of brokenness. Your eyes only allow you to see the decay around you whether it be in your health, finances, marriage, relationships, friendships, work environment, etc… Whatever feels dead to you right now, remember if a dead piece of rotted out wood can sprout life from the inside out; the Lord can take that dead, broken feeling you carry and can breathe life back into your situation… Jeremiah 32:27 ” Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh: is there anything too hard for me?”