Promise #4: I will not falter, God is ALWAYS watching

Promise #4: I will not falter, God is ALWAYS watching
  
(continuation of notes I took while listening to the James MacDonald CDs “Always true”.  The direct quotes are his, not mine.)
  

Titus 1:1-2

 1 Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ to further the faith of God’s elect and their knowledge of the truth that leads to godliness— 2 in the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time

Isaiah 43:2

2 When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
      And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you.
      When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned,
      Nor shall the flame scorch you.

 
God’s hand is on the thermostat, His gauge is on the depth of water.  I don’t know what I can handle but He does.  His goal is to change and mature me and bring honor to Himself.   I can take more than I think I can–He is the One providing me with the strength I need.

1 Corinthians 10:13

13 No temptation (another word is “trial”) has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.

 
His mercies are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness.  He will always make a way of escape at just the right time.  He gives encouragement to persevere, gives wisdom to do His will, He can pull me out of the fire/out of the flood waters at just the right time.
 
God’s promises are activated by faith.
 
Wrong views of God watching:
 
1. Some think God is watching like a resentful parent.  He is not.
Zeph 3: He rejoices over me with singing.  He is “at the front of the balcony, cheering me on”
 
2. He is not “watching like a hawk”, swooping down on every vulnerability, waiting to pounce on every mistake
 

Psalm 103:14
 14 For He knows our frame;
         He remembers that we are dust.

He knows the things that are hard for me.  God wants me walking in victory and has all the resources for me to do that.  No condemnation in Christ Jesus.
 
3. He is not like a crabby church lady sitting in the balcony, critical eye and wagging finger at kids she is watching below, cranky, never happy with anybody.
 
Psalm 40:2
He lifted me out of the pit of despair,out of the mud and the mire.He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along.
 
The goodness of God leads me to repentance.  He redeemed me, set me free.  He can not love me more than He already does–I am loved with an everlasting, perfect love.
 
4. He is not a cantankerous boss: “Hey, get to work, time is money.”
God is the most loving, gracious, benevolent parent, interested in my well being
 

He sees it all. 

Proverbs 15:3

 

 3 The eyes of the LORD are everywhere,
   keeping watch on the wicked and the good

Searching for people to bless.  He is especially focused upon and attentive to His own.

2 Chronicles 16:9

9 For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.

  I am precious to God in ways totally disproportionate to the person I am.  He knew me before foundations of the world (Ps 139)

Lord, every good gift comes from You.
 (From James 1:7)

171.  God is watching me as a loving Daddy watching the apple of His eye–focused on me with eyes of compassion, plenteous in mercy, rejoicing over me with singing, gracious, tenderhearted and I have the joy and privilege of being His beloved daughter.  Nothing I am going through escapes His attention.  He knows everything about everything.  Nothing is too hard for Him.  He can do anything.  He has promised me that he will work all things together for good in Romans 8:28.

172. Isaiah 43:2  Even though this passage has a different context and was not written to the church, I can glean the heart of God toward me too.   His eye is on the thermostat of this fiery trial. Even though it feels very hot at times, I am not going to get burned up. His eye is on the gauge of the depth of water in this flood. The water is not going to go over my head. I am not drowning even though it feels like waves are crashing over me at times.  He will help me catch my breath, tread water,  and float on my back and rest when the water is too deep to walk through.  He will not give me more than I can bear. He will show me a way of escape when I am tempted to sin, when I feel like giving up, when things feel too hard. At some point God will say “That’s enough” and this trial will end–maybe on earth, maybe in Heaven.  He can completely heal me in a snap anytime He wants to, however He wants to.   He will provide every bit of the strength I need to persevere and walk in His victory while He wants me on this earth, then after that He is going to take me Home to Heaven in His perfect time. I already know the end of the story and my future is bright no matter what happens.

173.From Isaiah 43:4 : “You are precious in my eyes, honored, and I love you.”  He feels like that about every one of His kids, me included.  I am loved with an everlasting, perfect love and am so grateful to be His.

————-

Specific requests I would really appreciate prayer for:

-Chemo #4 out of 6 is Monday, 8/22.  It’s not that the infusion part is so hard when it is happening, it’s the afterwards part that I dread.  I don’t know if it is the fluid shift from the steroids along with added IV fluids, the chemo itself, or what but the squeezed, tourniquet sensation in my arm  gets worse with the chemo treatments.  The pain, along with the chemo side effects, hit hardest the first week after chemo.  Thank You Father for chemo.  Please use it to kill off all the cancer cells and please protect all the healthy cells.  Please take away the pain in Your timing and give me strength to endure it as long as you allow it.

– I may have the start of neuropathy in my fingers and feet which are side effects of the chemo.  I’ll talk with the doctor about it.  I’d appreciate His protection from chemo side effects and radiation damage later.  I hate these treatments, did everything I could think of to avoid this path I am on,  but as far as I know, they are what God has for me.  Please pray I will have a good attitude about His plans for me including this cancer treatment: genuine acceptence with a happy heart!  🙂

– Please pray that He would flood my heart with His joy, peace, strength, courage, grace,  and accomplish all He wants to do in my life.  I have been thinking a lot lately about that article by Piper, “Don’t Waste Your Cancer” posted in this blog as my first entry (It’s archived in January on the website http://jpoliver.com/wordpress/archives/date/2011/01 )  Please pray that I won’t waste the cancer, that I will walk closely with Him, and that He will lift all discouragement.

–I have decided that I would like to be a much more positive, optimistic, joyful person and kick every despairing thought out the door of my mind to the dumpster where it belongs.   While it is true that I am fighting an especially fast, aggressive type of cancer and some people do die because of it despite treatment, many people have survived it and it certainly is not too hard for God to heal me. I’m not just some statistic, I’m the daughter of the Creator of the Universe and I am going to live just as long as He says so–no more, no less. My hope is in the Lord, not the treatment that He may or may not use.   I am asking the Lord to transform my thinking, renew my mind in His Word, that I will dwell on His truths.  If it’s His will to heal me of this cancer, I’m going to be healed.  Since I don’t know what that will is,I am going to live like I am living, not like I’m dying.  The truth is, as His child, He has a victorious, abundant life for me right now, a day at a time.  Because of Jesus Christ, I have every reason in the world to have a great life, no matter what I am going through.   Can you pray that God will do this work in my heart and mind, that He will teach me to have a positive, optimistic, joyful, hopeful attitude? I do not want to be a miserable person, allowing despairing, depressing thoughts to swallow me up–those kinds of thoughts call my name sometimes, especially when I am hurting and feeling lousy after the chemo but truthfully it can hit at any time.   I want to walk as a victorious child of God, an overcomer.  That’s who I am in Christ!

–I would appreciate prayer for my weight and that I would walk with the Lord in doing the things I can do to take good care of myself.  I’ve struggled with being over weight for years despite mostly healthy eating (intermittent mess-ups with overeating) and my attempts to take excellent care of myself. I got down to my goal weight range in May when I was doing the alternative cancer treatment, having 13 organic juices/day, doing coffee enemas, eating a very strict diet.  Right now there is a combination of being on steroids and other drugs that are known to cause weight gain (the literature says “normal means to maintain or lose weight are ineffective on this drug”.  Not fair, not fair!   I mistakenly thought all cancer patients got skinny but some get fat). Right now I can’t exercise like I am used to and have been  feeling rather disillusioned about how I still got cancer despite all the measures I took to avoid it.  Chemical menopause because of the drugs are making my hormones go crazy, I have a messed-up thyroid gland which makes my metabolism very sluggish.  I’ve gone from about 7-8 years of usually being on a very strict eating plan (either all or high raw vegan to lately eating whatever I feel like eating which includes junk I haven’t allowed myself for years and years.   All those put together are not a good combo.  Anyway, along with some major physical changes like the loss of my left breast, my head of hair and most of my eyebrows falling out from chemo, continual pain,  bloating and edema from the drugs, now the weight has also been piling back on and I am very uncomfortable. I have been “feeling ugly” lately.  It’s not that I think of myself as having been so good looking before cancer but cancer is such a robber of even what you do have on the outside like even stealing thinning, straggly, greying hair.  My wigs are prettier than my own hair but I like my own hair better because it was mine and it wasn’t hot and itchy.  The truth is God and my husband and children and friends love me no matter what I look like.  Father, please make me beautiful on the inside where it counts.  Please help me to take good care of myself and do the best I can on the outside too, in a way that is not vain and is pleasing to You.  Please transform me and give me YOUR perspective, your point of view on this life you have for me.  In Christ, my “self image” has nothing to do with what I look like.

 Today is day #1 for me of getting back on track: back to eating just foods which build my body up, not tearing it down.  I feel better not eating junk. I am asking God for wisdom and self control with my eating, exercise, and to have HIS balance in making healthy lifestyle choices.   I am confessing my sin of gluttony to the Lord and know it is wrong to try and fill up voids and futilely try to relieve stress with food, using it like a drug really. I want to be in close fellowship with the Lord and walk with Him in every area and not walk in the flesh.  Many things are out of my control right now but what I choose to put in my mouth or not put in my mouth IS in my control and I can do that again, with His help.    For years I faithfully exercised about 1 to 1 1/2 hours per day almost every day (and loved doing that and being fit and active).  I haven’t been up to doing that since January because of my health and treatments but I have been doing a small amount of walking, swimming, and biking as I’ve been able.  I can add to that as I get my strength back and get stronger and healthier. The truth is, food is not my comfort…chocolate and sugar and processed junk is not my comfort. I will not run to them like an idol when I am stressed.  Jesus is my comfort.  HE is my refuge and strength and fortress, my deliverer.  Because of the drugs  my weight may not respond to normal means to lose and maintain a healthy weight for a long time.  Plans are for me to be on IV Herceptin for a year and 5 years of hormone blockers after that which can all also cause weight gain.  I wish that wasn’t so but it is and I might as well make the best of it and do my part.    I am going to do the right thing and leave the results to God.   I will let go of all excuses.  I will do my best with the things I can control and let go of the rest.  My position and value are “in Christ”, not what I look like. 

I am sharing this here because this is a weak area for me and I would appreciate prayer.

 Thank you for praying.  Thank you for your friendship and your  encouragement and uplifting words in the comments on the blog and in emails and in person.  I appreciate you guys very much.

Rejoicing in the One Who is the same yesterday, today, and forever–

God’s beloved Paula

 

2 thoughts on “Promise #4: I will not falter, God is ALWAYS watching

  1. Thank you for being so vulnerable and exposing those areas where growth is needed. It shows me my weaknesses as well that need His touch. It is interesting how drugs can alter our normal chemistry and yet we can’t live without the drugs sometimes. Some day we will have our new bodies and our struggles here will be over. Thank you, Jesus!

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  2. You are so precious and so very open! Thank you, Paula, for your example to us all. I will be praying for your vulnerabilities and for God giving you HIS victory in all areas. We need HIM so desperately in EVERY area. All of us!! Praying for you as you face more chemo this week!! Miss your smiling face! Love YOU, Terry

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