I was having a very melancholy moment realizing I would not be able to write my annual cancer free anniversary post. Today would have been 7 years.
I had been doing so well!
Having reached the desired benchmark of 5 years with no setbacks, I really thought cancer was behind me forever.
When I recently started blogging again, I purposed to write from a place of brokenness; to tell my journey with raw emotion, being authentic about the struggle. I felt this was what God was speaking to me-to show the inner wrestling to hold on to hope and grow in my faith- not falling back into fear.
About a week ago a friend gave me Ann Voskamp’s new book The Broken Way. I was fighting tears as she handed it to me, knowing it has the potential to be life-changing. Her first book, One Thousand Gifts, was one of the most impactful books I’ve ever read and one I gave to this same friend several years ago.
I brought the new book with me today to read during Olivia’s chiropractor appointment. Olivia is my 10 year old who periodically sees a non-force chiropractor to help relieve pain because she has “loose ligaments” and is hyper-flexible. As the chiropractor was working her magic, I was inches away trying to read a few pages. Problem was… I couldn’t see the words through the tears!
I’ve only read nine pages and it’s almost too much!! … in a most amazing way!
In her first book, Voskamp hints about her struggles, saying enough of the story to make a point.
IN THIS BOOK she is putting it all out there, masterfully weaving her raw story with the faithfulness of God.
Some of my favorite quotes (from the first 9 pages!):
- “Who doesn’t know what it’s like to smile thinly and say you’re fine when you’re not, when you’re almost faint with pain? There isn’t one of us not bearing the wounds from our own bloody battles.”
- “What do you do when it feels like everything’s changed? It’s a strange thing to find out your heart can explode with love and suffering and find out they’re kin in ways we don’t care to admit.”
- “Great grief isn’t made to fit inside your body. It’s why your heart breaks.”
- “Jesus is always on the side of the suffering, the wounded, the busted, the broken.”
- “Brokenness happens in a soul so the power of God can happen in a soul.”
- “Is there a grace that can bury the fear that your faith isn’t big enough and your faults are too many?”
God is doing a work in me that is almost unexplainable at this point. I see it, I sense it, but I don’t know exactly where it’s taking me. I do know that I want to be different- changed in a way that rocks my world.
I want to know God, to walk with Jesus and hear the Holy Spirit directing my life. I refuse to stay the same.
No more counting cancer-free anniversaries.
Today is day one of the rest of my life (cue music to Matthew West’s song).
Cancer does not define me.
I’m no longer a slave to fear. I AM A CHILD OF GOD.
Happy anniversary to ME!
BUY THE BOOK!