September 6, 2022
“In addition to all of this, take up the shield of faith, with which you will extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one” (Ephesians 6:16, NIV).
Back in late January 2021, during the first months of COVID, I went to my PCP after developing a nagging dry cough. I thought it was a Lisinopril cough. My PCP agreed with me, but just to rule out Valley Fever (I live in Arizona), she ordered a CXR. Totally unexpectedly, my CXR showed a 1.4 cm nodule at the apex of my right lung. I’ve never smoked. No smoker in my home. No family history of lung cancer. A biopsy confirmed NSCLC adenocarcinoma Stage 1. I underwent a right upper lobe lobectomy, deemed “curative surgery,” a month later. I now am taking targeted therapy and feel almost back to my pre-surgical days.
What was this all about? What purpose in this trial? I’m not sure.
Was I worried and anxious? Of course—but I know the Lord is sovereign, and the Lord is providential, and I immediately turned to Him. I asked Him to help me trust His plan, His sovereignty. I wholeheartedly believe God honors what faith we have, whether it is a smidge or an abundance.
Shortly after my biopsy, the Lord gave me a wonderful vision, clear as day. I saw myself as a hyperactive little lamb running around with the other lambs near Jesus. He walked amongst the herd through an expansive green pasture with His rod and staff. As we approached an ominous dark valley, I saw myself naturally easing up to Him, wide-eyed and worried. I looked up, and He was smiling at me. Immediately, I felt a profound sense of peace and assurance. I felt so sure in that moment that I could trust Him! He was going to stay right beside me through the darkness even if I did not know what the future held.
I have replayed that imagery over and over whenever anxiety and fear try to sneak in.
This trial with cancer does not stand alone. The Lord has graciously nurtured my faith through many strategically placed challenges from younger days to now. He has embedded my understanding of His sovereignty and providence deeper and deeper with each trial. By the time I reached this challenge, my greatest thus far, I reacted with faith. I reacted by turning my heart and mind to Him. I have been able to pray through it all that His will be done and not mine.
I can’t say I’ve always welcomed His plan, but I am convinced His will and His plans are better than mine even if I don’t see where they lead. I am convinced our only hope is our Lord God, the unchanging Rock of Ages. He has sustained me through all the challenges of my life and will continue to sustain me every day, until He returns or I join Him in Heaven.
Dr. Alice Lee
Thank you for growing my faith even through this present trial. Not my will, but thy will be done.