Lynna Clark: Pit stop
Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 14, 2018
She was beaming as she took both my hands in hers. “I’m so happy for you!” Her beautiful smile revealed the sincerity of her words. Taking me off a particular medication had relieved a lot of the pain I was experiencing. This young woman had worked hard to become one of the foremost cancer specialists in the country. She had worked just as hard to see me through nearly two years of cancer treatments. Together we had been to Gehenna* and back. I truly believe she suffered with me every step of the way. Oh what empathy and kindness she has shown.
Another friend Mary has a great deal more sympathy. She too has been through years of cancer treatments but the disease keeps returning. Just when she gains strength enough to enjoy life again, a test will reveal the cancer has spread to a different area. So when she sends a message that she’s been praying for me, I know she understands firsthand what it means to try another medication, or to be scheduled for another test.
Our friend, Eddie relates even deeper as he lost his wife to breast cancer. He knows exactly how to pray for David. His kindness is overwhelming and when we really feel the need for prayer, I message him. What a comfort he’s been to both of us.
Sometimes though, it feels as if there will be no comfort.
Last month, we had to switch the preventative medication I’m on because it was causing extreme joint pain. However the new drug drop kicked me into the pit o’ despair, as in major meltdown, can’t stop sobbing for no apparent reason.
From the pit I begged God for help. Like a pebble falling into a bottomless hole I cried out to Him. I wondered if I was losing my ever-loving mind. At this point you’re probably nodding in agreement.
Have you ever been there?
Nothing makes sense. You tumble down that shaft so far that all light disappears. There is no ray of hope. The darkness is so thick you can feel it.
That morning, I opened my Bible to the following passage while begging God for help. It said,
“So then, since we have a great High Priest Who has entered heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to what we believe. This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for He faced all of the same testings we do, yet He did not sin. So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive His mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.” –Hebrews 4:14-16
It wasn’t immediate. I really struggled for a while. I feel sure it was a chemical imbalance. But since I nearly failed high school chemistry, my knowledge of such is limited. However, spiritually I’m learning that through these types of trials, I must stay strong no matter how I feel. God said that His Son understands what I’m going through because He suffered in a similar fashion. Through Him I can find grace to help when I need it most.
Though I would never purposely dive headlong into a dark bottomless pit, it’s a great relief to discover a very strong bungee cord called “faith” is attached to my soul. Soon I will rebound to solid ground. His promises are sure no matter how unstable I feel. Emotions shift like sinking sand. That’s when I MUST hold firmly to what I know to be true.
Jesus is the solid Rock on which I stand!
PS: How faithful God is to hear us when we cry! All this happened on March 2nd, just when we were about to participate in a family wedding. I didn’t think I could do it. But God is so kind! He held me together and loved me through the whole week-end. We started a new medication, which is to help block hormones that feed my particular kind of cancer, the following week. I’ve been on it a month now with very few side-effects. Praise His sweet holy Name! He is faithful whether I realize He’s there or not.
Oh… and Gehenna* is just a polite word for Hell and should not to be confused with the heavy metal band by the same name.