And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony. . . Revelation 12:11(a)
A childhood friend and sister of my mine gave me a journal last year and the cover read, “She believed she was loved and it made her brave.” That quote spoke to the very depth of my soul. I will be eternally grateful for the Father’s love and the strength it gives me. On many occasions, I have been told I was strong and I have said it about myself giving the credit to being raised by strong women. However, I have realized over the last decade that my strength lies solely in the assurance of God’s love for me. As the old Black gospel song goes, “You can’t make me doubt Him, I know too much about Him.” I often say that the Lord has a proven track record with me. He has never failed me; He has never forsaken me; and He has been with me through all my stuff. When it has counted the very most, He has always shown up in a very special loving way through His peace, His Word, and His Spirit to reassure me that all was well.
Some of you may recall reading my testimony of being diagnosed in 2011 with colon cancer. If you have not, it is available on my website titled, “Savior, Redeemer, Healer.” In May 2018, to memorialize my seven year cancer free milestone, I wrote a mini book titled, “Healing: It is Our Birthright,” which shared some valuable lessons I learned while going through my healing process. It is also available on my website.
Ironically, in November 2018, I was shocked with a diagnosis of breast cancer. Since my previous mammogram was in March 2018, I was certain that it was nothing. Nonetheless, since I had money in my health savings that had to be used before the end of the year, I decided to follow up with my doctor. The doctor did not see or feel anything; nevertheless, as a precaution, she sent me for another mammogram and an ultrasound. The first mammogram did not show anything, so the radiologist asked if they could do a 3D mammogram and I consented. Something was detected on the 3D mammogram and they then proceeded with an ultrasound. The ultrasound confirmed that there was a lump. I still was not concerned because I had been through this before many years earlier, including a biopsy, which was the next step. I completely thought the biopsy would be negative; however, it came back positive for cancer.
It would literally take volumes of books for me to tell all that the Lord did for me throughout this process, so I’ll just hit the highpoints. Number one, He gave me His peace. Number two, He gave me His Word. Number three, I had the assurance of His love – remember what I said earlier – He has a PROVEN record with me. The very first thing the Lord spoke to me was, “Every challenge is an opportunity to trust Him more.” My first thought was You think this is just a challenge? And the Lord responded, “Because I am with you, it is just a challenge.” He also reminded me that the same strategies that He had given me to overcome colon cancer, would work this time too. From that point forward, I relied on His peace, His love, His Word and His Holy Spirit.
All of this happened the latter part of November just before the Thanksgiving holidays, and of course, followed by the Christmas holidays. Therefore, I made the decision to not tell my family so as not to burden them during the holidays. For that same reason, I did not reach out to friends whom I would normally trust for prayer. After the New Year holiday, I told my family.
I wish I could tell you that it was smooth sailing from there; I would be lying. My declaration was, “I know I am healed, I just do not know what the healing process will look like.” Nonetheless, I was fully persuaded that death was not even an option. Therefore, I focused on fighting the good fight of faith, trusting God and not giving space to the enemy through my words or actions.
On January 11, 2019, I had a double mastectomy. The recovery was wicked. I believe this is where some give up and choose death. You can easily become overwhelmed with the recovery/healing process. I cried on many occasions. I asked God when would my health be restored; when would I finally be pain free; but not once did I doubt that He was going to bring me through – the question was simply when. Three months post-surgery I was still in pain. I ended up firing the surgeon because he was not addressing my concerns. Through the Lord’s mercy and a series of circumstances, He allowed me to finally get to the right place to receive the help I needed which was a huge turning point in my healing.
Through it all, the Lord was very gracious to me. In the midst of the difficult recovery, my family and I received the good news that I would not need radiation or chemotherapy. Because of His peace, I was able to endure; because of His Word, I was able to remain hopeful; and because of His unfailing, unchanging love, I am still here still declaring that, “Healing is the children’s bread” (Matthew 15:26); still declaring Him as my, “Savior, Redeemer, Healer;” and still testifying of His goodness!
Jehovah-Rophe – The Lord Our Healer!