Tuesday, September 1, 2009


I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. ~ Psalm 139:14

Karen Zando, a friend, talked about this Psalm at a breakfast several years back when she was a guest speaker. I have used this Psalm on myself since then whenever I am feeling bad about myself. I am now saying it to Elizabeth all the time. God has designed her and she is uniquely Liz.

I hear these statements all the time, "God will not give you more than you can handle," " I don't understand why God allows stuff like this to happen." Here is my response to statements like these. "GOD DIDN'T give Liz cancer." I feel cancer is a by-product of our sinful world. When Adam and Eve disobeyed they brought suffering and disease into our lives. GOD did PROMISE to be there through our troubles, carry us when we are too tired to go on, to take all things bad and use them for good. We have free will, a gift from God and one that is often abused by us. My question is: how can God still love us? Because of our fallen world we will never understand that sort of love; we must just BELIEVE.

This round has been both physically and mentally a tough phase. If Liz was a rapid responder in October of 08, she would be into maintenance at this time, but because she was not she has four more months of heavy chemos. It is basically a repeat of the last two phases. The new and unknown will be the radiation in October. Starting back to school has also been a roller coaster for Liz. She is excited to be normal and go to school yet she is only going half a day, has to use the elevator, is exhausted and in pain when she comes home, does two classes online, and will not be in school by the end of Sept, until after the New Year; how normal is that for a 15 year old? She has not been in school for the past year, friends change, life happens, and she is no longer defined by being an athlete and left wondering "where do I fit in?" She has done things with friends and seems to be more upset by what she sees she can no longer do like something as simple as throwing a ball.

I seem to be weak at the moment. I have a very strong faith but a weak mind. Seeing your daughter see her new limitations and not feel like she fits in anymore is hard to handle. Our relationship is much stronger than it has ever been, this is a good in a bad situation. God has given us a bond and relationship that is forever changed and is and will be stronger than most mother daughter relationships. I would not suggest going about it in this manner but it is definitely a good in a bad situation and THAT is a gift from God.

Please be very vigilant in your prayers for Liz over the next four months. I believe this time will be the biggest battle yet. She has stayed strong for so long and now the demons are really working hard to break her spirit and cause her to worry about her future; no child should ever have to worry about their mortality. A lot of the people she knows or has gotten to know that have cancer since she was diagnosed with cancer have not made it and this makes it extremely tough on her mentally.

We are headed down to clinic today and tomorrow for chemo. This IV Methotrexate is tough on teenagers. The more she receives the harder and sooner the side effects hit her. She was vomiting 15 minutes into the treatment last time. We were at clinic from 10:30 a.m. until 5:40 p.m trying to get her side effects under control. Please pray for Gods peace and protections from the violent side effects she experiences from these chemos. Please pray that the pain in her knee joint is from the Vincristine and not A Vascular Necrosis, a bone deterioration from the steroids. Please pray that she remains free of the flu. The secondary complications that cancer patients get from the flu will kill her. Please pray for my peace of mind. I said "I have a strong faith but a weak mind" and it can play havoc with me. Please pray for the Stoneberger family. Rob Stoneberger was a teacher at Sycamore, in his early 40's. He died from Esophageal Cancer on Saturday.

If you have not signed up for the Light the Night walk in Mason on Sept. 17, or donated, all proceeds go to the Leukemia/lymphoma Society, please go to my fundraising page below and do so. We are so close to saving ALL patients with blood cancer.

My you experience Gods abundant love and blessings ~ Christine


Robin OK said...

I am praying for all of you - you're all in my heart. I am inspired by your wisdom, your love, your grace, strength, fortitude and your faith. Thank you for sharing your story - may God bless you with peace of mind. One of my favorite quotes:
"peace. it does not mean to be in a place here there no noise, trouble or hard work. it means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart."

Kelly said...

Wow. I will pray harder for Liz and the rest of your family now since it seems she needs more.
I have always liked the following quote:
"Become a possibilitarian. No matter how dark things seem to be or actually are, raise your sights and see possibilities - always see them, for they're always there." ~Norman Vincent Peale

I hope your spirits stay strong and helps your endurance through the next four tough months!


Annette said...

I am reminded in Luke 11 when Jesus was praying and was asked by his disciples,"Lord teach us to pray," how important it is for me to be relentless in my boldness in praying. In this parable, one man was in need of food and he woke up his friend at midnight.Even though his friend said,"Don't bother me, the man kept on and only received the bread he needed because he boldly continued to ask. Jesus said, "Ask, and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened." So I will continue to boldly ask, seek, and knock for Liz! What a remarkable privilege not only to be allowed to come to the throne of God in prayer, but also to be encouraged to come boldly. Love and prayers, Annette

jean said...

I am Jean Hsia, a friend of Sharon Barns from Shanghai.We have been praying for you. I am now in Seoul, Korea. My father had CLL for 11 years. In his case, flu vaccine does the opposite for him. He actually gets sick and took a long time to recover. So later on,we just decided he will do it withought the flu shot. My husband has Lymphoma and now is in remission. A close friend of mine has advanced colon cancer that spreat to lung and liver. All dealt with the side effects, they have all taken some mixed 5 kinds of veggie soup (made fresh or from powder) and brown rice tea to cope with the side effects. Did Liz ever taken anything else besides medicine to cope with the side effects?
The Lord's strength, mercy, and compassion be with you.

lisamader said...

I search for words of encouragement, but fear they will minimize what you are feeling. It is okay to feel anything you are feeling. It's okay to scream and cry. It's not fair. It is due to this fallen world we live in. Fortunately, Liz is not defind by a sport, friends, cancer or anything she can or will do, but by her savior in whose image she was created. I pray for both of you you will know and FEEL you are fearfully and wonderfully made. You are okay how and where you are at any given moment. As Rob continued to say 'til his last day, God is great - particuarly when we are weak. Rest in Him.
Blessings, Lisa