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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Treasures in Darkness

Funny how most people are unpacking from the Safari Through Daniel and here I am packing, packing, packing. Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined all that my nomadic journey through the book of Daniel would prepare me for. Ever.

When I committed to this journey, I had no idea where I would be walking. No idea.

But God.

God knew. God knew I would need my safari sisters to hold the flashlight for me as I walked down a dark, dark path. God knew I would need friends to gather around the campfire and pray in the midst of a starless night. God knew I would need someone else to drive the jeep, carry my backpack and holler back to me when there was a bump in the road. God knew I would need sisters to point out the raw beauty of the beasts seen on a wild ride. God knew I would need sisters to hold my hands when I felt fearful from staring the beasts in the eyes. God knew the sisterhood this safari would create.

As I looked back over my snapshots taken on our safari last night, I realized most of mine required a flash. It seems most of them were shot in the dark. At night. The nights have seemed much longer than the days on this particular journey.

Now, that’s not a bad thing. It’s just a thing. There might have been a day when a long night was a bad thing but the darkness didn’t camouflage the beauty of this adventure.

Cancer.

It’s an ugly word. I still can’t believe it’s a part of my life. My history. My future. I am so glad my sisters were here to hear it with me. I’m thankful my sisters will hang around to fight it with me. And although I don’t know what the future holds, I know the God who holds it.

God taught me many lessons through Daniel that have just been reiterated by cancer. Choose life, choose trust, choose boldness. Make Daniel choices. Remember God’s plan. Remember God’s purposes. Remember God’s miracles. Honor God no matter what. Remember the lions. Remember the fiery furnace. Remember the cancer.

As I remember the miracles of this journey, I stop to give thanks. All involved would agree my surgery was a miracle. It was a miracle that it took place. It was a miracle that I only had the cancer removed and nothing else. I believe the treatment plan is also a miracle. I have been spared a harsh chemotherapy regimen and will start radiation soon. I think of the fiery furnace. I am thankful, so thankful that not a hair on my head smells like the fire.

This journey has been filled with too many gems to recount. Too many. The trove of treasures I have stashed as souvenirs is priceless. The scrapbook I carry in my trunk is bulging with sweet memories. The scars my body wears from this hard journey will serve as proof that He was with us. Is with me.

Daniel summed it up best at the beginning when he told us what we’d find ahead if we dared to continue. I happen to agree.

Daniel 2:22 says, “You explain deep mysteries, because even the dark is light to you.” It gives me great comfort to know that even the dark road of cancer is light to God. God sees cancer for what it is. That’s why I need to see God.

I’m praying for you too, friend, that as you walk about in your own dark circumstance, you would find God’s riches, secret treasures along the way. As you read the verses below, insert your situation and your name and look for God. Let God reveal himself to you today.

“As I lead Lisa, I will level mountains and break the iron bars on bronze gates of [cancer]. I will give Lisa treasures hidden in dark and secret places. Then Lisa will know that I, the LORD God of Israel, have called Lisa by name.” Isaiah 45:2-3

“He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in [cancer], and light dwells with him.” Daniel 2:22

18 comments:

His Girl said...

I just passed out from your amazing use of words and faith and the Word.

I will be back after carpool to tell you all the ways I think you're pretty much cooler than chocolate.

Anonymous said...

Absolutely beautiful, encouraging and inspiring. My prayers are with you and your family. God's peace be with you, Lisa

Kathy@ Gone North said...

Thank You Lord! Thank you Lord, for Lisa, for her testimony to me. Thank you, Lord for "blogland" for this new venue to me, an unlikely, somewhat goofy tool that you use, Lord, to minister to me. Thank you Lord, for Lisa's courage thru cancer, that she is using it all, to minister & Bless.
Now Lord, heal her from this... By Your will, remove it. Bless her life & her move & continue to stand so close to her that her heart beats as yours.
With so much gratitude my heart is full. K.

Anonymous said...

Lisa,

I have just started reading your blog and it has been such a blessing to me. Your post today was amazing and I not only needed to hear it but share it with one of my closest friends who is half way through a very tough chemo regimen for lobular breast cancer. Right now she is in a dark place and I pray that she can see God's light in her situation and trust Him. It is so hard a friend/sister to walk beside her when encouragement is sometimes rejected. So, thank you for your words they are healing to my soul. I am praying for you on your journey.
Natalie Osberg
Elk River, MN

Andrea said...

I continue to praise GOD for all HE is doing in and through your life. No doubt HE has even bigger plans to use your journey to help so many others.
Storming the heavens with you,
andrea

Sheryl said...

ok, i just cracked up at amber's comment. she's going to tell you how you're cooler than chocolate? ha

well, you are amazing. even though i didn't continue on in the daniel safari, i know that IT is what brought you and i together. for that i am grateful.

God is using you mightily!! much love to you, my friend.

Denise said...

You encourage everyone sweet friend, love you dearly.

Sonja said...

What God is showing you Lisa... is really priceless stuff!! All of this cancer experience is going right into the LISA bucket of life... and your depth of understanding of God and who He is during this walk is just beautiful. Seriously... I'm a whole lot further down the road in life, and you are challenging and blessing me every day, and all who are reading this.

Keep up the chatter, glad or sad... He is in all of it, and He's sure using your life to speak His grace.

Hugs!

Sonja

Queenmothermamaw said...

How beautiful and inspiring for sure. You are giving so much more than you are receiving. I guess we all all receiving grace as we journey with you. In fact I should not say I guess. I know. blessings
QMM

Debbie said...

Oh how I loved this inspiring post. I love what the Lord has taught you on this journey and your willingness to share it all with us. What a testimony for Him you have. So encouraging to see Him so at work. HUGS, PRAYERS, AND BLESSINGS, Debbie

Deborah said...

Hi Lisa, that was beautiful.
Penny starts her chemo, her new cocktail on Tuesday and it is going to be tough. I held her hand yesterday in the car driving back from her Dr.s appt. in Boston for a few moments. I held on to her and just prayed that she will be able to handle this next journey that she is going thru. I cried when I got home. It is very difficult and I pray for you and your family daily.
Many blessings my friend!
Deborah

Loren said...

You bless me over and over...God knew ALL ALONG and HE will continue to bless, to heal, and to use you in amazing ways just as HE did Daniel!

I love you my friend and Praise God for all HE is doing in YOU & through YOU! I am blessed to have met you here in the blog world!

Gretchen said...

Wow. Words fail me, Lisa. This is so elegantly written. And you are one elegant, fiercely loved SAFARI sister. I will miss our time in the jeep.

But I'll praise Jesus for my new friend. Xxxooo

Bernie said...

I don't know how you manage to always be so upbeat, so faithful, loving and caring but I want you to know I find you to be a real inspiration and not only to those who have cancer but to those of us who are just making our way through every day life. Always in my heart and prayers.....:-) Hugs

~*Michelle*~ said...

WOW....what an amazing testimony of faith, Lisa.

continuing to pray for you...
...and thanks for the reminder of that powerful Scripture:

Daniel 2:22 says, “You explain deep mysteries, because even the dark is light to you.”

Donna said...

Lisa,

Thank you again for another great post and for your encouraging and inspiring words! It is really cool to hear what God is doing in you and through you! It is amazing!

You have been on quite a journey. Psalm 23:4 talks about passing through the valley of the shadow of death which is deep darkness. The shadow is caused by light - which is Jesus! Be reminded that as you have taken this journey, that Jesus has been the light that caused the shadow. He has been right there with you! And we are only passing through this valley - not staying there! Thank You Lord!

Know that you continue to be in our prayers! Blessings!

Jen said...

Nothing makes me happier than to know that I am one of your safari sisters. It has been incredible getting to know you and love you.

And I agree with Amber...you are much, much cooler than chocolate. And that is saying a LOT!!

Tiffani said...

Seriously when I think of your journey and how God allowed it to coincide with our study...He's just so timely, isn't He?!

Girl. I am amazed at you never missed a post, you completed the study...all while fighting the fight of your life.

So happy to have our lives connected through this (but not disconnecting after). You are encourage me to be stronger and I love you for that.

You are written on the pages of my prayer journal, sister. Thank you for being my Safari Sister!!!