In the fall of 1994 I was diagnosed with carcinoma breast cancer, stage three. I had six out of twenty-one lymph nodes that tested positive also. Normally this is not a good sign, but God had prepared my heart for this when I read a book titled All Things, written by John David Clark, Sr. I found out by reading this book the bible and learning the Old Testament and listening to the Spirit of God, that God was in control of my life. Every thing that happened to me came from His hand, and not the devil, as so many people want to believe when bad things happen to them.
One morning I was getting ready to go to work when the Spirit of God spoke to me and said, "Don't be scared", very clearly and very strong. I said, "Don't be scared of what Lord?" I didn't get a reply, but I thought about it for a few days and still nothing. A couple of weeks later I was taking a shower and found a lump in my breast and thought I had better have it checked out. I went to several doctors and they all said the same thing that they didn't think it was anything, but we could do an ultrasound and mammogram to be sure. I did and neither one even showed the lump. I told them that couldn't be because I could feel it and so could they. One doctor told me to come back in six months and if it was still there he would do a biopsy. I thought about it for a while and decided I wanted another opinion from a doctor in Raleigh. The day I went to him he did the biopsy that same day. He called me a few days later to come into his office the following Monday to discuss the findings.
I was visiting with my family in the Lord the Sunday before I had to go to the doctor on Monday, and asked for prayer before I left that night. One of my sisters in the Lord asked if I wanted her to go with me to the doctor the next day, I told her no I would be alright. Well, when I got home and was getting ready for bed, I asked the Lord, "Lord do I need someone to go with me tomorrow?" And the Spirit spoke back and said, "My rod and my staff will comfort you." I immediately went to the phone and called John Clark, my pastor and asked what was God's rod and what was His staff. He told me His rod is what He whips you with and His staff is what He guides you with. All I could do was pray and seek God, I knew I was in for something, but didn't know what. I went to the doctor the next day and he told me the biopsy had come back positive and that he would do the surgery and take part of my breast that was diseased. He did the surgery and sent the tissue to the lab and found that the whole breast was diseased and that the cancer had spread into my lymph nodes and radical surgery was needed two weeks later. When they had taken me to my hospital room and I was allowed visitors, my brothers and sisters in the Lord and some of my natural family was there and the Spirit of laughter came over the saints of God in that room and it was the most beautiful, heavenly thing that anyone could have ever seen or felt. We laughed and laughed and I received a phone call from one of the saints at home and couldn't even talk to her for laughing so hard. When you know God is in control what else can you do. I learned that night that our problems are no bigger than a gnat, and God will not put on you more than you can bear. And that is the truth!
During this time I was taking the Old Testament class taught by my pastor John Clark and I was really learning about God and I remembered how I would pray. I wanted to know THAT God I was reading about. The message on All Things had already been planted in my heart and I believed what Romans 8:28 said, And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose. God has a purpose for my life and I do love Him, so what else is there but to trust Him and live. My faith felt so strong one day and the Spirit spoke to me again and said, "Can you take the hotter fire?" And without even thinking I said, "yes Lord". During this time God did not let me get depressed or weak in the faith, He kept His hand on me and I felt it, but I still didn't know what was ahead, but I soon found out.
I had to go back in two weeks and have the radical surgery done and the doctor took out everything down to my chest wall. My doctor told me I had to be treated just like the cancer was treating me. Very aggressively. If I had waited the six months that one doctor told me I would not be here today. I was put on the strongest chemotherapy available at that time for one year and had to go through twelve weeks of the strongest radiation that my body could stand. At first I was not going to go through chemo or radiation because I heard it was so bad on people and I guess I was a little vain, because I didn't want to loose my hair either. My doctor told me I was very foolish and that I was healthy and strong enough to go through it. I did, and neither one made be sick, only very weak. And needless to say my hair came out after the very first treatment. I had a lot of complications that year. I had to be hospilized over a dozen times because my white counts went to zero and I had to have platelet transfusions, but Jesus was there every inch of the way with me, and my wonderful holy Ghost family, and we ARE family.
I love my brothers and sisters in the Lord. They helped me a lot. One was a nurse (Betty) and she gave me my shots everyday to keep my white counts up. This way I didn't have to go to Raleigh to get them. That was an hour drive one way, and my body was so weak. God has been so merciful to me and has blessed my life so much. It is worth anything just to get closer to Him and to trust Him. I had to be whipped a few times with that rod, and that is called reaping, but I have been guided with the loving hand of God more. I asked for the hotter fire because I wanted to reap early and enjoy my remaining life on this earth with the saints of God that I love so much. Just knowing All Things work for your good is a wonderful lesson to learn. It has been many years now and I hope God will give me many more. God is BIG!