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Friday, August 28, 2009

Pink Boomer Luncheon - September 17th

Just wanted to give my friends an update - the Pink Boomer Luncheon is almost sold out! If you are thinking about joining Pastor Debbie and our women's ministry team for this fun time, please register immediately. We are expecting to close down registration by Monday - we're running out of space!

Just visit pink.gatewaypeople.com and click on the link at the bottom to register. Can't wait to see you there!
Much love,

Friday morning greetings!

Hi friends,

Thanks so much for all the additional prayer support over the past few days. I feel like some of the weight has lifted off my mind and I'm beginning to rise up again. I had a great visit with my doctor on Wednesday. We talked a lot about my visit with the surgeon and some concerns I had. He is really an amazing man. Both brilliant and compassionate.

We went ahead and scheduled my scans immediately. Yesterday I had a CT on my hip and another MRI on my breast. I'm also scheduled for an echo cardiogram just to be sure my heart is tolerating the chemo drugs without damage. I'll know a lot more about both the progress we are making and what comes next by next Wednesday. He really encouraged me to drink a lot more water as the reason I'm getting urinary tract infections is because one of the chemo drugs tends to settle in the bladder. More water, more water!

I already told you how much I enjoyed blessing box #3 - but I have to show you a picture. It was another beautiful display of love and support. I have all three boxes displayed on a shelving unit in my home and they really make a beautiful display. I can just open one at anytime and grab hold of a truth or an encouragement. Thanks again to Julie and the lovely ladies who have loved on me over and over! I am blessed.

When I got home last night, I had some beautiful flowers. Thanks Chelsea! They are gorgeous. I hear you sent me flowers on your birthday. Somethings not right about that. I think I should have been sending you flowers.

Last night I was able to attend John's first high school football game. On Thursday's they wear a cool "game day" polo for school. We snapped his photo on the way out the door at 7 am - so he doesn't look so happy. Jaguars won last night 19 to 0! Go Flower Mound.

I'm still feeling well this morning. Just cleaned my kitchen, ran some laundry, made my bed and sending you a note. Hoping and praying for an easy time - but either way - committed to going through.

Here's a verse I'm meditating on this morning. Heb . 10:35 - Therefore, do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. I'm believing for a great reward and therefore, I'm standing resolute in the face of disease.

Love you and thank you again!


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Chemo Round #4 - Strength for the battle!

Good morning,

Its 5:45 am and I've been up for awhile. Today is chemo round #4 and I have mixed feelings. A part of me dreads the day and weekend (only natural, I guess) and the other part of me rejoices to go on through. I have to remind myself that each treatment is like a rung on the ladder. At least I have some sense of forward motion and a movement toward the destination.

When I got up this morning I just knew I couldn't wait to open my third blessing box. Julie brought it to me yesterday and prayed over me. I have just read every note, verse and gift. I feel like I'm drinking in an early morning boost of strength. Thanks again to you amazing ladies. Each box has held a unique vibe and come at exactly the right moment. I am so blessed. I will carry you with me today and through the weekend and look forward to the day I can say thanks face to face.

Not only am I in for treatment this morning, but my mom, Marilyn has cataract surgery this morning. Thanks again to LC for taking her on my behalf. I'm confident she'll do well, but would you please agree with me again? Her procedure is at about 9:00 this morning and should last about 30 minutes.

Talked to my mom in law Molly yesterday who said she had experienced about 4 good days in a row. That's encouraging. Wondering if the new medication may be making an impact? Prayer point again.

My schedule has become challenging - probably just like you. It was a real relief to get the boys and Ashley back in school this week. I made one more late night run last night for school supplies while Mark took Matthew to football practice again. John and Matt have their first football games this weekend and Luke starts next week. I think I'll have to miss Matt's on Saturday - so I'm kind of bummed about that. But there are lots of games and I'm making to make as many as I can. Everyone, including Ashley, seems satisfied with schedules and teachers.

Ashley's been working SWAT (freshman orientation) at DBU. She seems to have loved it! Please pray for her too as her fall schedule is demanding with work and school and leadership opportunities. Would you mind praying with us for favor with the financial aid department? Her paper work didn't get processed until this week and we're really entering the semester on financial faith. We've submitted a request for some special consideration due to circumstances but are waiting.

I don't want to forget to let you know how much we've appreciated all the food that has continued to roll into our home. So many amazing meals! Thanks Lynnell, Paula, Angie, Lanae, Colleen, Tina, Christy, Paula, Lorena - I hope I didn't forget anyone because I assure you they didn't forget us. Our refrigerator is always full and our love tank, too! Thank you so much.

I realize I've been sporadic in my writing the last few weeks - I hope I haven't lost you or overly concerned you. I am distracted in many ways and grateful for your continued prayer. I am definitely into a battle for my mind and emotions. I am not unstable, but under constant barrage. Each day I arise and ask God to do battle with me and for me. My progress feels suspended and threatened. This ground is more rocky and uphill. I am praying for hinds feet to go on and up with God.

After 6:00 am - time to rally the troops and face the day. May the Lord lift you up, make His presence known to you and give us all strength for the battle.

I love you,


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Greetings from the sidelines!

Hi team,

I'm posting an update from my phone while sitting on the sidelines of Matthew's football scrimage. I've been wanting to post an update for days but find that having time in the evening at the computer is challenging. All 3 boys are practicing for fall football and our nights from 5 to 8 are no longer our own. Not complaining. I love it. Just explaining.

In addition I've been working hard on all things related to Pink Impact, especially writing all the pre event copy. For those of you who might not know one of my primary responsibilites in the womens department at Gateway Church is our annual women's conference called Pink Impact. This is my 4th conference to be involved with and it takes a large portion of my work time. I've been trying to get all the promotional oieces done. By the time I finished all that, I had a hard time switching to this format. Didn't mean to be absent for so long.

I've had a good two weeks. I am experiencing some side effects that are related to the steroids and chemo that effect your hormones. Hot flashes are a regular occurence and this week my ankles are swelling. These things make me grumpy! Who wants toi be fat and sweaty? Seriously, these are minor and I am continuing to be strong.

I had a surgery consult this week. It will be awhile before we have to make some decisions in this area. Not one of my favorite topics.

Tomorrow I receive my monthly dose of bone strengthener along with a new drug designed to prevent my blood vessels from feeding the tumor. Hoping for no side effects and a quick office visit.

My mom in law, Molly gave me Joshua 1 9 this week. Just a reminder to hold back fear and stay the course.

Please continue to pray for my body and soul. I have to keep resetting my mind and will to focus on what is good and pure and right. Believing my emotions will follow suit.

Thanks for hanging with me during a dry couple of weeks. I'm remaining steadfast and faithful.

Thanking God for every single warrior! You are appreciated.



Wednesday, August 12, 2009


Hi friends,

Thanks for all the sweet calls, texts and notes this week. I'm happy to report that I had a less difficult response to this round of chemo. I didn't get so tired until late Friday night and I could have been up and moving around the house on Monday - except on Monday morning Matthew woke with a sore throat and bad cough. I banished myself back to my room for the rest of the day just to be sure he didn't share his "stuff" with me. I did not get as fatigued this time, but I did develope a urinary tract infection and had to visit the minor emergency clinic on Sunday. I started an antibiotic and all is improving. I was able to return to work on Tuesday with very little trouble. All in all - the easiest round yet!

But I didn't manage myself so well. I was in bed all weekend, but couldn't really rest. I'd feel bad, toss and turn, go to get something to eat or drink, fall back in the bed. I got so tired of just wandering around the room, laying in the bed and clicking the remote. I was restless.

By the time Monday came around and I was forced into my room for another day, I became downright crabby. I really wanted to go lay on the couch! I was pretty much annoyed about any and everything. I'm sure that was nice for my sweet husband and sick children. I find my body did better, but my emotions were worse. I was whiny, cranky and not easily satisified. If I didn't know better, I'd say I was tired and send myself to bed again!

Selfishness is not a good bed partner!

Boston update: My mom in law, Molly, and sister-in-law, Julie, have been in Boston since Sunday evening. My mother in law has done amazingly well and been able to complete three full days of tests and procedures. She did qualify for the drug trial and Julie tells me they have medicene in hand. Although no new information was revealed, they did receive excellent counsel and some good direction for helping my mother in law to regain her weight and strength. They'll return in about 6 months for a follow up. They tell us that within a couple of months we'll be able to tell if she is receiving the real thing or a placebo. Apparently they are confident she'll be able to tell by some improvements in her current symptoms. They travel home in the morning. I'm so proud of them both - real troopers! Thank you for praying for them.

I see my doctor tomorrow for my one week check up! I'll let you know how it goes. In the meantime, praying for the strength, patience and positive attitude to conquer the next two weeks. Football, school, home improvements and doctor visits make for a crazy schedule. I bet you can identify.



Thursday, August 6, 2009

Pinc Incorporated - Tonight - NRH

Pinc Incorporated Professional Women's Event

Featuring LoriAnn Lowery-Biggers

Dinner at 5:30 \ Forum at 6:00 \ Evening Session at 7:00

I'm so looking forward to attending this special evening tonight at the North Richland Hills Campus of Gateway Church. Ladies, if you can make it please plan to attend. Please register today by visiting pink.gatewaypeople.com. There's a link at the bottom of the page that will take you to the registration form. The event is free, but we want to know if you are coming.

LoriAnn is an amazing woman with a wealth of wisdom on how to be a successful Christian woman business leader. In addition, she has a passionate heart to hear and obey God. The combination of these two strengths will yield a harvest of wisdom for us this evening. Come early if you can for dinner. Hear a panel of business women answer some of our most common questions and then we'll enter into an awesome opportunity to grow together. This would be an awesome place to bring your co-workers as well. LoriAnn is exceptional and you don't get an opportunity to hear a CEO of this level in this personal of an environment very often. I'll be there early, and would love to see you! Can't wait to give you a hug and lots of thanks for all the support!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Stay your post!

Here's another verse form the Message Bible that reminded me about being resolute. Praying I will stay at my post - neither turning to the left nor the right. Love this verse!

Our work as God's servants gets validated—or not—in the details. People are watching us as we stay at our post, alertly, unswervingly . . . in hard times, tough times, bad times; when we're beaten up, jailed, and mobbed; working hard, working late, working without eating; with pure heart, clear head, steady hand; in gentleness, holiness, and honest love; when we're telling the truth, and when God's showing his power; when we're doing our best setting things right; when we're praised, and when we're blamed; slandered, and honored; true to our word, though distrusted; ignored by the world, but recognized by God; terrifically alive, though rumored to be dead; beaten within an inch of our lives, but refusing to die; immersed in tears, yet always filled with deep joy; living on handouts, yet enriching many; having nothing, having it all.

2 Corinthians 6:2-3

Chemo Day Three!

Hi friends,

Day 3 chemo was another day of total blessings! Lynnell arrived bright and early this morning to drive me to our appointment. When she arrived she was carrying a beautiful bouquet of flowers you can see in the photo below. They had a card which says "many of us are praying for you today! So sweet. Thank you! The beautiful red dahlias and the blessing box arrived on Tuesday and came from another group of friends who prepared the most amazing surprises. Thank you, too! I'm wearing my new t-shirt that my friend Tracy gave me. You might not be able to see, but the t-shirt contains the words about how limited cancer is - from one of my earlier blogs. It's simply a beautiful work of art combined with those amazing declarations.

This is Lynnell and I sharing lunch. Lynnell packed in lunch for us which was so yummy. We shared turkey, cheese, crackers, pretzels, bananas and delicious greek yogurt. Thanks Lynnell, you are so thoughtful.

Here we are about to break into the box! First of all this box is a coordinate for box number one. They are similar, but different - just like us! This blessing box had a couple of definite themes. First everything was wrap and prepared in red, black, white and silver. It was visual feasts for the eyes. The red had a definite underlying message - reminding me that the blood of Jesus is working a miracle in my body. In addition, there was definitely a jewel/crown theme. So many interesting words and comments about those things. It even contained a gift of some prophetic jewels and a beautiful journal with a crown. In addition to that there were lots of prayers and Scripture that addressed the issue of doubt verses belief that I wrote about in the blog yesterday. I felt they were all confirmations that I'm hearing God and on the right track.

Here's a picture of my fusion nurse, Rene. She takes such great care of me. I'm quite a job! She has a beautiful spirit and I appreciate her attention to my needs.

Just wanted you to see that Lynnell was totally into the "crown" theme! Check out her t-shirt! She didn't plan it but God did. Of course we were both texting all day long. She's addicted to that iphone!

There were about a hundred things inside this blessing box I could share with you, but I decided this was the one to show you. It was so cute and made me laugh! Maybe I have a new nick name - after all i am pink!

Thanks to each one of you who lifted me in prayer today. Each time I return for the treatment it does take a certain measure of courage. I find I must willingly submit my body to the treatment at hand - determined to go through to the other side. Your prayers have given me strength when I needed it. I'm praying for a "light" fatigue, no mouth burn, a cooperative digestive system, and grace, grace, grace for my family. I know you will pray with me too!
My kids and I share a little joke! I like to sing a song to them when they snuggle up close to me - maybe you know it - "Have I told you lately that I love you? That there's no one else above you..." That's about as far I get since they roll their eyes, start to giggle and make a comment about my poor singing skills! But they know I love them. Tonight I'm singing to you and I hope you know I love you too!
I am blessed!

PS - Just a couple of prayer request...
Jenni Henson's daughter, Maggie Lee, passed away on Monday night after a 3 week battle. Services are tomorrow in Shreveport. So saddened by this news.
My mother in law - Molly - leaves for Boston on the 10th! She's had a rough couple of weeks. Please remember to pray for her.
All 3 of our boys are starting football (and school.) We're used to crazy sports schedules, but this fall will be especially challenging with the addition of so many doctor appointments. Sometimes we have to get all three boys to different places at the same time. Just praying I'll feel strong so I can do my share and be a part of one of the most fun things we do as a family.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Doubt is subtle.

Welcome back my friends,

I have had a great week! Thanks to Elena, Tiffany and Phil for some amazing meals. To our friends the Laster's and the Bennett's for great weekend visits. Thanks, Tracy for the t-shirt that is so beautiful and reminds me how limited cancer really is. Thanks to Marie for a beautiful gift bag and Scripture and to Erin for a thoughtful sign about belief that set me down the path of the topic of this blog.

I'm still celebrating my doctor visit from last week. As more and more people learn of my progress, I repeat the story and I find myself giddy over and over again. When I talk about it I feel a little like a child. As I have observed this about myself, I've definitely been hearing some comments in my head that are not from God.

Lie #1 - Don't act childlike - people will think you are foolish. I know that there is "grain" of truth in most lies. Isn't that how the enemy works? He knows the Word of God and can quote it but loves to pervert the truth - telling half lies to bring confusion. That's how I feel about this thought...What do I really care about what people think? Honestly, I feel like a child - a giggle rises up in me - a big smile spreads across my face - and I want to leap! Oh how easy it is for pure joy to be squashed, stolen or rebuked. I've decided to just go ahead and be happy about it!

Lie #2 - You shouldn't have told everybody. When you are sick again, they'll be disappointed. I first heard this lie while driving to work last Thursday morning. I was totally entertaining it and wondering if I had spoken too soon. Should I have been like an expectant mom and wait until the first trimester is over? Maybe I should have phrased it a little more cautiously...Just reasoning with myself about the consequences of boldly announcing the tumor is gone. Okay - but the tumor is gone!

Lie #3 - It doesn't mean that you are healed - you are going to be sick again. I began to ask God "Am I healed?" "Is this a miracle?" Somewhere over the middle of Grapevine Lake Damn, I realized "It's a miracle for me." I've got to stop comparing myself to the medical standard and the other people in the Cancer Center. In my case, it's miraculous. As soon as I moved to that way of thinking, thanksgiving began to rise up - quickly followed by faith to believe that if the tumor is gone, then the cancer is gone. I began to declare my body a cancer free zone! Can't wait for the scans to agree with me.

The week before this doctor visit, I felt like the we were 1/3rd of the way through. I don't know exactly what that means. I don't think I should put my own expectations on it - like saying 1/3rd of the time has passed or 1/3rd of the disease is conquered or whatever fantasy that make perfect sense to my strategic mind. I don't think it's that simple. Here's a place where I've got to look forward to the sign posts.

I'm now learning about the 2/3. I have been battling for my body...but now I'm moving into a battle for the secret thoughts of my soul! This portion of the process might be more subtle or deceptive or seemingly confusing. The issues and enemies aren't as clear cut. After all, I know it's God's will to heal my body - and that cancer is the enemy. Now I have to know He will heal my soul and reveal to me the places in me that are founded on lies. It's now a matter of whether I will stand in faith or in doubt?

Doubt is so potentially dangerous and so subtle. I imagine it's like coming to a "Y" in the road and deciding to go left when the map says go right. It's a small decision, but the longer you walk down the path the further you are from your destination. It seems like nothing at the moment. I don't even think most of the time I realize when I'm doubting. Just an undirected mind and a few quick glances at the facts, and I can be down the road in a hurry. I refuse to lose the healing we've fought so hard to obtain. After all I'm practing being resolute.

I realized that maybe you are having some of the same kind of thoughts. I can imagine you are asking if it means I've been healed. I suspect you are might be thinking that I (or maybe you) will be disappointed. Maybe you've thought it was just too good to be true. Maybe you've thought it was time to move over to the next prayer assignment. I'm so grateful that you are a faithfilled people, standing in confidence with me over this situation. I know you too will cast down these imaginations and just stand on faith. The enemy does not stand a chance in the face of pure and simple faith.

Tomorrow I'm headed in for round 3 of chemo. I was supposed to have an additional chemo drug added to my regimine that would make the visit and hour and half longer. Last week he told me I'm doing so well, that's I don't have to do that. He's going to wait. Yea! We'll have a normal day and be home by mid-afternoon. Lynnell is coming early to drive me and I have an another amazing blessing box to enjoy! Wait until you see it! We'll take some pics and post them for fun.

Thanks for celebrating with me all week! For believing I've experienced miraculous healing. For being a true "Jonathon" friend. For being you!

I love you,

Saturday, August 1, 2009

I am woman!

I'm so proud to have my first "published" article in the latest edition of Studio G called "I am woman." It's a little personal commentary of how much I value women. Studio G is a Christian women's magazine published by PINK - Gateway Women. If you aren't on the subscription list, you can still check out the magazine and read all the amazing articles by visiting http://studiogmag.com. While you're there, click on the subscription link. The magazine is free and currently published three times a year!

Thanks for reading!