God Provides the Healing

Last week I chose health and healing as the words of the week on my Facebook page. I always thought I was fairly healthy. I followed a typical western diet and tried to exercise when I could fit it into my schedule. I have never smoked and never really drank much alcohol. I am also still fairly young.

I didn’t buy into the organic foods for quite a while. I couldn’t see that it made any difference in my friends’ lives, and organic produce can be pretty expensive. (I would later change my mind on the organic front after doing more nutritional research.)

My world was rocked in 2016 with my first breast cancer diagnosis. Serious health diagnoses can be scary, especially for a young mother. I got through the treatment stages and still didn’t change my eating habits. I had no idea. Nutrition was never really brought up during treatment. The medical staff were only concerned that I kept my appetite and didn’t lose weight.

One thing I did change nutritionally during this time was that I stopped drinking as much soda. Some brands would make my stomach hurt, so I just couldn’t drink them anymore due to the pain and discomfort; not so much from any nutritional viewpoint. (Yes, I knew soda was not good for me, but I hadn’t really thought about how toxic it really was for my body.)

My world was turned upside down when I received the metastatic diagnosis in 2019. Around this time, one of my brothers and his wife introduced me to the ketogenic diet. They had been low carb, ketogenic, for a couple of months and we had some conversations about it over the holidays. My husband and I started counting our carbohydrates and limiting them a few weeks before I heard the words metastatic cancer.

It didn’t take me very long to start researching and going down the “rabbit hole” to find the proper human diet. The more I looked, the more lies and misinformation I found. This can be very upsetting for people who, like me, have a chronic (or multiple) illness. I don’t know the number of times I cried when I learned the truth.

I am only a little over a year out from my metastatic diagnosis and conventional treatment. It’s still too early to tell if I have helped improve my prognosis. However, I don’t dwell on thoughts like this very often nor for very long.

I look back and see God’s providence intertwined in my life. I believe the low carb, ketogenic diets were introduced to me as tools for me to use to aid in the healing of my body.

Back in February I explained it to a friend by comparing it to 1 Corinthians 3:6-9:

“I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. For we are God’s fellow workers. You are God’s field, God’s building.”

My brother and sister-in-law were like Paul because they introduced, or “planted,” the idea of the ketogenic diet and nutrition in my mind.

I am like Apollos as I “water” my health, my life, by following a meat heavy ketogenic lifestyle and continue to research ways to optimize my health.

Only God can provide the healing.

I feel well, I am hopeful, and I know it is all in God’s hands. He is in control and can see all things and how it will work out in the end. He is mighty, faithful, just, merciful and gracious.

I will continue to share my testimony and go where He sends me.

Right after first cancer diagnosis but before treatment.

Last fall, after following a ketogenic lifestyle for several months.

 

 

A View From Home: Corona Virus

If you have the privilege to live in a modest setting, you probably have access to internet and social media, then your social media feed is over filling with the corona virus pandemic information, memes, case numbers, government action/lack of action, etc. We are living in some strange times and there are so many questions, concerns, and emotions swirling around. I don’t have medical, professional, or statistical data to contribute. The only thing I can do is share what I see from my point of view and provide encouragement to those who are kind enough to continue reading my posts.

Public View:

The Corona Virus (COVID 19) is starting to spread like wildfire in our country. National and local officials are trying to implement and encourage interventions to help slow the spread and flatten the curve. Unfortunately our arrogance and concern about public opinion overran our common sense and has now put several people in danger.  However, what’s done is done.

So, now what?

Social distancing is a very popular term right now but please learn about its importance. Learning to stay home can be hard for many people in modern society, when we are constantly on the go. I pray that people use common sense, have patience with this temporary disruption, and be considerate of your health and those around themselves.

I have sympathy for those who have to completely rearrange their lives and are scrambling to make adjustments. My hope is that people take the recommended precautions seriously.

Personal View:

Personally, the disruption has not been that significant at this point. We are “homebodies” anyway; we enjoy being home. The biggest change we have right now is that my husband is allowed to work from home, but this is not foreign to us either. He was able to do this when I was going through chemotherapy. I suppose, our past experiences with social isolation from cancer and chemotherapy has helped prepare us for the current situation.

We are doing our best to be cautious and we are avoiding all social activities outside of our home. Social distancing is important to us, specifically, because I am part of the higher risk group for “catching” the virus. I am on a medication for my metastatic cancer that suppresses my immune system. (People often forget, or overlook, people like me because we don’t look sick.)

Encouragement:

I have listed below some Bible verses that have and continue to bring me hope and peace during times of fear.

I hope you find comfort in them as well.

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.”  Jeremiah 29:11-13

“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”  Romans 8:28

“fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”  Isaiah 41:10

“Trust in the Lord with all your, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”  Proverbs 3:5-6

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”  Isaiah 55:8-9

And a new favorite:

“For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  Romans 8:38

I don’t know why the corona virus is happening in this time. Maybe it brings us the opportunity to slow down and focus on what is most important or Who is most important. I don’t know how this will all play out. No one on earth does. What I do know is that God is greater than anything we have here on earth. He has everything under control, and He can see the “big picture” that we cannot see.

Spend time in the Bible each day, search your heart, and pray. There is so much power in these gifts. God has given them to us to use as tools in communicating with Him. And when it seems too much to bear please know that the Spirit is there to intercede when you can’t find the words. Take heart, “this too shall pass.”

 

 

“I sought the Lord, and He answered me and delivered me from all my fears.”  Psalm 34:4

 

“I will also speak of Your testimonies before kings And shall not be ashamed.”  Psalm 119:46

Anonymity vs. Authenticity

I decided a couple of weeks ago to actually start a blog to share my testimony with others. My original intention was to keep it anonymous because I know some of my posts will consist of thoughts and experiences that I don’t often talk about. I was going to hide behind anonymity to “protect the privacy and feelings of my family.”

However, over the past three or four days God has been working on my heart. He has been asking if I am really trying to protect my family or if I am letting fear keep me from moving forward. It is probably a little of the first and a whole lot of the latter.

So, am I going to let my fear appear bigger than God? Or, am I going to remember that God is bigger than my fear? Am I going to step out in faith?

If I continue to let fear keep me from stepping out in faith and obeying, then I have let it become a stumbling block in my life. Writing about my story versus telling it out loud gives me a little more courage to share (as I am sure it does for most other people).  I think this blog will bring a level of honesty and authenticity to my testimony that my shy nature inhibits when speaking to others.

I have no problem sharing what I find when it comes to health and nutrition of the body. The hesitation comes while sharing what I learn, experience, and struggle with regarding faith and the Spirit.

I have shared some things on my personal Facebook page regarding different Bible studies or what I have read in the Bible at certain times, but I often keep it on a more surface level or an uplifting note. Yesterday, a lady told me that she appreciates the Bible notes I post and what they meant to her. She has no idea how much I needed to hear that yesterday; I will continue to blog with hope of reaching so many more people.