Excited- and wedding planner in hand (Think old school: notebook. Not a human. That would be awkward.) we went from apartment complex to apartment complex. the one with the lake? Denied. The one with the park? Denied. The one in the beautiful neighborhood? Denied. Just barely adults- and we’d already messed up our credit. (WHY do they send credit cards to first year college students? I could barely handle working and studying- let alone a credit card. It felt like a magic pass to anything I wanted or needed. Only we quickly found out: not so much.) I think it’s a conspiracy. But, that’s not the point.
The point is: our choices of first apartments were limited.
We were however- finally approved for a third floor apartment in an older complex. We were disappointed, and excited. We had a place! It wasn’t our first (or even our third) choice- but it was going to be our first home. We packed up our boxes- furniture and wedding gifts and moved in. We made it our own. We made the best of it. TMI alert: we even conceived our first child there. It wasn’t perfect. Parts of it sucked. But- it was our abode. It hold a precious place in our hearts.
Every once in a while, we take a drive by it to reminisce and show the kids.
We’re in a similar situation right now. Only it’s not an apartment we’re stuck with- it’s cancer. Yesterday was a long day of cancer appointments. They didn’t go as we’d hoped. Cancer is that ugly apartment where we currently abide. It looks like we’re going to be stuck here a lot longer than we were in that first dumpy apartment. This cancer just won’t die. (Random: Yesterday during an on the edge of tears rant I said: “This cancer needs to just die, already” My husband only heard the last part. NOT good. Um the look on his face was one part shock one part unbelief. I clarified and we laughed. “Duh. I meant the cancer- not you. I’m not wanting you to die, yet.” Because you know- I’m the most loving and compassionate wife ever.)
I keep packing my emotional boxes and hoping to move on- only to have our hopeful next place in life “Denied” all over again. It’s disappointing. It’s frightening. I hate it.
But- we have a choice. Just like we did when we found that first apartment. We can make the best of this place- or be miserable.
We chose to abide well- even here. We hold onto moments of joy. We are loving as well as we can. We refuse to allow cancer to make us so self focused that we don’t love others well. We chose to trust God- no matter the outcome. We also chose not to allow cancer to distract us from God’s calling on our lives. As parents, in our places of work, in our calling to love others well.
I hope- that someday we will look back on these days like we do that old ugly apartment. That we’ll have memories that are precious- although garnered in a place we never wanted to dwell. In this place we don’t want to abide- but are.
Dear Lord- I beg you to guide and direct our medical team. I beg you Lord to heal my husband. And i beg you to help us abide well- even here in this place of cancer that we hate so much. Give our family what we need each day to face it with courage. Help us to face whatever lies ahead. Lord—- I’ll be honest- I don’t want to walk anymore miles in cancer shoes. It’s been 3 year long roller coaster. I hate roller coaster. I’m tired. I’m hurting and I’m scared. Help me to take just the next step. And all those that follow. I love you Lord- amen. PS: Jesus? I hate cancer. I’m glad you do too.
Most of us find ourselves stuck in a place we don’t want to abide in at some point. Where have you been stuck? Are you stuck in a place you hate right now? In sickness? In divorce? A relationship with an ex that’s making you miserable? In a struggle with sin that you just can’t shake? Mental illness? A job you hate, but need the income from? How are you managing to abide there? How are you coping? How can I pray for you? Please share in the comments- or if that’s too pubic- email me- or contact me through Facebook. My contact info is in the sidebar. I’d be honored to pray for you. You’re not alone.
My prayer for all of us- Who feel stuck. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 NIV