Our doctors have indicated several times that the cancer has been in me for years, and is just now manifesting itself with symptoms. That’s the nature of cancer located in the middle of the pancreas, it seems.
I take so much comfort from that. I’m not sure why this is happening, but as I’ve said before, I do know God held this circumstance in His hands, considered it fully, and then allowed it to sift through His fingertips and into our lives, at this time, and in this way — for He is sovereign over all things and He is a perfect Father to His children.
According to the doctors’ explanation of pancreatic cancer, in order for the cancer to have manifested itself “at this time” in our lives, our Lord had to say “yes” years ago. And that just makes me marvel! I think of all the things our omniscient, all-powerful God lovingly and perfectly took into account as He turned this over in His hands and studied it. And that first makes me wonder how many times my Father held this in His hands and refused to let it fall through His fingertips and into our lives, knowing the timing was not yet perfect. And then I restfully wonder why did He decree years ago that this time would be perfect, knowing that His reasons are loving and compassionate. Perhaps He knew that Megan, Mallory, Cara, Diane, and myself would not be prepared to walk through this with Him until now, May 2012. Or perhaps He knew that sufficient intercessors would not be raised up to fight for us until this season of our lives. Or that our support network would be insufficient until that time. Or perhaps He needed to somehow prepare you; perhaps He had to prepare your heart to receive these moments into your life somehow, and now here you are, prepared by your Abba-Father for this very moment. Yes, our Lord determined that it was ok for the cancer to enter into our lives experientially “at this time”, because it was the perfect time for His plan and purposes. And when I next consider that the cancer is unfolding “in this way”, and venture to contemplate all the moving parts He sovereignly oversaw (and is now overseeing) as He perfectly fathers us, my head fairly begins to explode!
And so I am tremendously comforted by the “Fact” that this cancer has been in me for years. I see in that Fact nothing but my Father’s love, His care, and His provision for my family and me, and for all those whom He desires to touch for the good of His kingdom. That Fact reminds me that this moment is the perfect moment for this to be unfolding in our lives, and that it is unfolding in a way that does not take Him by surprise. And so, yes, the Fact that this cancer has been in me for years reminds me yet again that He is with us now, perfectly fathering us through this season of our lives, moment-by-moment-by-moment.