Can I begin to explain to you how honoured I am to welcome my mom here? I can't begin -- because if I do, we'll be here all day long. I will sum it up with this: my mom is the strongest, most beautiful woman I have ever known. I've written about her here, here and here. (And a few more times at that.) So go on and read this and be encouraged and inspired and given a fat dose of the hope we all so desperately need...
(PS. You'll know we're clearly related by our mutual love of dashes/ellipses.)
by Christie Latta
It came with a word, the year 2014 -- a word I had not chosen nor volunteered to experience. This word for the beginning of a fresh, new year, was unwanted -- and unrelenting.
It was clear that it was my word and that I had to own it, but everything in me wanted to push it away. Ignore its presence. Resist its power.
I wanted to shut my eyes tight for a really long time. Then, maybe, when I opened them again, the word would have disappeared -- and a lovely, flowy, happy, bright, cheerful word would be in its place. But no matter how long I kept my eyes closed, or how tightly I held them together... No matter how hard I prayed, or begged God for escape...
This was my word. And I was going to have to own it. Or bear the crushing, relentless weight of trying to fight it.
On January 10, 2014, I was diagnosed with cancer. And although one would think that this was the word for my year, it wasn't. The word that now covered me and surrounded me and accompanied me everywhere I went, was "hard".
This has been a hard year.
After my initial diagnosis, I had to undergo a plethora of tests -- both to confirm the diagnosis and to determine if the cancer had spread.
Every test was hard. And scary.
Waiting for a phone call with the results was hard. And scary.
Meeting with the Oncologist to hear the treatment plan was hard.
8 rounds of chemo, one every other week: hard.
Losing my hair (which I loved): hard. Scratch that... very hard.
Daily needles in my stomach after each chemo: hard.
Surgery to remove the tumour: hard.
Five weeks of daily radiation: hard.
Please hear those two little words. And yet...
Through all of this -- all of the hard, all of the painful, all of the unwanted, humbling and achingly tiresome side effects of cancer -- there was Jesus.
Jesus with His grace. Jesus with His love. Jesus with His strength. Jesus with His hope. Jesus with His comfort. Jesus with His listening heart. Jesus with His strong arms. Jesus with His unrelenting mercy.
And He became enough. Truly. Jesus was enough. The days were still hard. The side effects still ravaged after each treatment and each needle.
But He was there. And He was enough for me. He pulled me close every day and held me tight as we waded through waves of grace.
When He tells you that His grace is enough, no matter what we face -- please believe it.
His. Grace. Is. Enough.
Jesus is enough.
Today, whatever you are going through... whatever is causing your heart to ache and your eyes to flow and your mind to numb to all else around you, please hear and believe this:
Jesus is enough for you. Even in the hard. Especially in the hard.
Just this week, I completed my final treatment. (Can I get an amen?!) I am now cancer free and determined to live with great joy every breath that Jesus gifts me. All for Him... who is Enough.
fal(photos from the day I finished my final treatment -- yeah that's right, Jesus gave me a rainbow)
This is day ten. You can find the rest of this series right here.
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