Though You Slay Me: Faith and Cancer
I’ve recently been diagnosed with breast cancer. It’s been a 3-month journey from the initial screening mammogram to diagnosis. But now I know. It doesn’t feel real yet. I can’t feel it. It’s deep so it was only detected on my screening mammogram. Women, get your mammograms!
I haven’t started treatment yet so there are no side effects. I feel the same. But so much has changed. I’m “fighting cancer” but the only “fighting” so far has been reading, learning, and going to doctor’s appointments.
Think On These Things
As a life coach one of my favorite practices is doing thought work. It’s even more important now. What I think about matters. What I dwell on makes a difference in how I go through this. Even though anxiety shows up I know that it robs me of today. One of my favorite sections of scripture talks about this:
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians 4:8-9, ESV
This verse directly follows a verse that tells me to “do not be anxious about anything” but to give it to God with thankfulness and to let my request be known to Him. This is always my desire, but in the past I have struggled with taking those worries back that I have given to Him. And that’s why I appreciate the concrete instructions in verses 8 & 9. I can direct my thoughts and the promise is that the God of peace will be with me.
A Deeper Faith
One of the ways I direct my thinking in a more positive direction is to play worship music. I have playlists of songs that have specific meanings for me. It’s fascinating to me how every Bible verse and every worship song takes on new meaning when you are going through a tough time. I have always wanted to write blog posts to share some of my favorite songs. And with this post I am finally going to do it. I hope these songs will speak to you too.
This particular song by Shane and Shane has been a favorite of mine for several years. It is from the book of Job and if you’ve never read that book it’s about intense suffering and how God can be found in the midst of it. My prayer, of course, is to be healed. But my testimony is that even if He doesn’t heal me here on earth I still praise Him. I encourage you to listen to the song linked below as well as the excerpt of a teaching by pastor John Piper that is part of the video.
“My heart and flesh may fail
The earth will all give way
But with my eyes, with my eyes I’ll see the Lord
Lifted high on that day
Behold, the Lamb that was slain
And I’ll know every tear was worth it all
Though You slay me
Yet I will praise You
Though You take from me
I will bless Your name
Though You ruin me
Still I will worship
Sing a song to the one who’s all I needThough tonight I’m crying out
Let this cup pass from me now
You’re still all that I need
You’re enough for me”
Excerpt from Though You Slay Me by Shane & Shane