One of these days I’m gonna get back on a regular blogging schedule…but for now, I’m doing well to get through the day just doing the basics…taking care of my family, doing laundry and trying to keep house together while I feel sick as a dog most days. This too shall pass, but for now it’s sticking around pretty solidly.
There’s something else that’s been going on lately which has taken a pretty serious place on this stage of my life. I asked permission to share it with you all and was met with an enthusiasm to ask for your support as well.
One of my very dearest friends is battling cancer.
Melissa is one of the neatest people I know. Her attitude is so constantly overwhelmed by the faithfulness of the Lord, and even when she’s in a hard place, she has the wisdom to ask friends to help carry her through it. She’s fun, thoughtful, honest, caring, and has an adventurous spirit. She is a phenomenal person, wife, mother, and friend. Her faith is nothing less than inspiring.
This is Melissa’s second round with cancer. About 4 years ago she had breast cancer and after some treatments (she never had to do chemo), the Lord took the cancer away….Melissa was miraculously healed and went on to have and nurse 2 more children that the doctors had told her were unlikely.
A few months back, Melissa became really ill. We thought it was pneumonia, bronchitis, sinus junk…just stuff that wouldn’t go away. She saw doctors, and as her cough became more consistent over time, she began to lose weight and feel worse. There was finally a scan done of her lungs a couple of months ago which revealed a mass in her lung that once tested was revealed to be the exact same type of cancer that she had before. She was shocked.
There’s really so much more to this story than I can tell you in one post, but here’s what I want to say about it right now.
Her faith has been phenomenal…and as a result of her faith and the faith of our close group of friends and congregation at church, I am sure I have never seen prayer walked out in such an amazing way. And that’s saying something. Several years back we walked through a fatal pregnancy with a friend and saw the Lord answer thousands of prayers to restore life…their son will be 4 in March…it was a time where I was involved in praying like I never had been before. But even this time with Melissa, I have to say that I have seen what prayer in the body of Christ can look like in an even more phenomenal way. It has been amazing.
Some friends and I began doing a study on a book about healing, and have all been alternating days of the week in fasting, praying, and asking the Lord for words and scriptures for Melissa. The recurring words have been really amazing. Multiple times each day I get texts from this group of women with scriptures that the Lord has given them for Melissa and we all join in agreement to pray the same things. And the theme that we see over and over again in the scriptures that the Lord brings us to is that “what has been done before will be done again.”
This morning I was reading in Matthew about Jesus feeding the 5000 and I was struck by a couple of things. One was that when the disciples first told Jesus to send the people away, he told them to go themselves and feed the 5000 with the 5 loaves and 2 fish. It was after they marveled at the impossibility of it that he almost seemed annoyed that he was having to explain this to them again….they had seen miracles and he empowered them to be a part of them. He broke the bread, gave thanks for it and then handed it to the disciples to distribute….the disciples continued to see the bread multiplied in their own hands….to a point of excess….12 baskets of excess in fact.
A few pages later I started reading a story about the feeding of 4000. I flipped back and forth to make sure I hadn’t flipped to a different account of the same story, but I had not. This time there were 4000 people, 7 loaves and a few fish. The disciples said to Jesus “what are we going to do…this place is desolate and we only have this little bit of food.” I can’t imagine the look on Jesus’ face as he thinks to himself “Seriously guys…did we not just feed MORE people starting with less food just a few days ago? Have you forgotten already?!” So he gives thanks, breaks the bread again, and tells the disciples to give out food again…again it multiplies in their hands and there is excess.
And as I read this, I hear the Lord say that what He has done before, He will do again….and He uses his disciples to see His purposes through. He allows us to be a part of the work that He is doing. He wants and expects us to remember what He has done before and to claim that it will be done again. We are a part of the process. And it gives a whole new meaning to prayer for others doesn’t it? It gives a whole new level of faith, and a whole new level of expectation, and a reminder that we are to remember and call back into existence the faithfulness of the Lord that we have seen before. Testimony is remembering what has been done…and faith is calling it in to being again.
Join me in praying for Melissa? That what healing has been seen before will be done again. That hands that have seen bread broken before would not question if it could be done again, but would take the bread, break it, and distribute it to the multitudes again. That our faith would be great to see what has been done before repeated.