It had been one of the most stressful fall seasons of our lives.
First of all, my elderly mother was experiencing numerous different health problems, including what her physician was certain was colon cancer. Her hemoglobin was dangerously low, and she was also being investigated for a probable mild heart attack. This was all on top of eye surgery and a stubborn ulcer on the bottom of her foot that had her confined to an electric wheelchair, complete with porch lifts, scooters, etc.
Secondly, my husband was suffering from health problems requiring multiple medical appointments.
Thirdly, I was under investigation for shoulder pain, for strange loss of sensation in my hands, and mostly, for suspicious spots of unknown origin on my liver and on both kidneys. Being a breast cancer survivor, I didn’t need to be told that liver was one of the common sites of metastatic breast cancer, and my stress doubled. Then, when the MRI that would confirm the diagnosis wasn’t schedule until April…Well, we’ll just say that tipped me a bit over the edge…
Of course I am the only driving for the three of us, as Rob’s vision is too poor for most driving situations, so you can only imagine how much time I was spending in doctors’ offices…
As if all of that weren’t enough, our oldest son moved back to University, but couldn’t find a place to live until mid-semester. As a result, he was living in our unwinterized 12-foot trailer that doesn’t even have a bathroom, in a campground close to the University, and once he finally found a place, we had to move him out of our house, out of the trailer, and help him get settled into his new place.
And just to add a little “spice” to our lives, we were trying to downsize. Our family-sized house had been on the market for six months already, and nothing was happening.
Therefore, when my husband felt called to leave the country from January to March, I wasn’t exactly ecstatic. There were too many “mountains” standing in the way of such a trip! After all, what if my mom actually did have colon cancer? How could we leave her for that length of time? What if…I had liver cancer? What if the house hadn’t sold? What if…?
Before making a decision, we took it to the Lord and asked for His advice. His response? He promised miracles…not once, not twice, but three times!
Booking such a trip in the face of all those “mountains” would take more faith than either of us had, and this put us exactly where God wanted us to be. He placed in on our hearts then to begin meditating on Matt. 17:20: “I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it would move. Nothing would be impossible.” (NLT). With God’s help, we began to understand just a tiny bit more what mountain-moving faith looked like, and with His help, we are working at growing our faith into the mustard-seed-size required to move the “mountains” that would have potential to keep us from the winter trip.
As I write this devotional, it is now 2 short weeks from when we are due to leave the country, and I continue to be amazed at the mountains God has moved with our shaky mustard-seed-sized faith…
Mountain #1: My mother has been declared completely cancer free, her hemoglobin is back to well within normal limits, her heart problems and blood pressure are stable, her foot is healed and her spirits are restored. I can feel at peace leaving her for three months!
Mountain #2: At the end of November, we got an offer on our house, conditional upon the sale of the buyer’s home, closing date in April, when we are back. Two weeks later they received an offer, also conditional upon the sale of their buyer’s home, also proposing a closing date in April. At the same time, two beautiful houses came on the market, just the thing for us. Would we be able to put in an offer before we left the country?
Mountain #3: Wonderful chiropractic treatment restored the sensation to my hands and my shoulder pain is gone. My MRI was moved up to the first week of December, and the results finally came in yesterday. The spots on my liver were not just determined to not be cancerous, instead, they were completely…nonexistent! God had removed them! And the spots on my kidneys were determined to be nothing but common kidney cysts. Praise God. I could leave the country for the winter in peace.
As I think back, I am amazed that how our nearly-non-existent faith has grown–just a tiny bit–into mustard-seed portions over the course of this fall. I am also amazed at how this tiny little seed-sized faith has, indeed, moved the mountains of our lives, clearing the path for us to be able to leave the country in peace.
But why not? After all, our Heavenly Father does have everything under control, and all He asks is for us to put our tiny, shaky, mustard-seed-sized faith in Him. For when we do, the “mountains” of our lives will–move!
In His love,
Lynona Gordon Chaffart, Speech-Language Pathologist, mother of two, Author — “Aboard God’s Train — A Journey With God Through the Valley of Cancer”, Author and Moderator for The Nugget, a tri-weekly internet newsletter, andScriptural Nuggets, a website devoted to Christian devotionals and inspirational poems, withAnswers2Prayer Ministries. Follow Lyn on Twitter @lynchaffart.
(To access the entire “Mountain-Moving Faith” mini-series, please click here!)