I came across the words to a beautiful song that Pam and Terry sent me years ago.. It was written by Janice Rogers Edmiston, to be sung to the music of “A Few of My Favorite Things” from the Sound of Music:
Joy thru my teardrops, and gains thru my losses
Beauty for ashes, and crowns for my crosses;
He binds my wounds, and He dries all my tears
Calms every storm and He conquers my fears.
He gives me hinds’ feet to walk on high places,
He floods my soul with His heavenly graces;
When I am weak then His strength makes me strong
I know I can trust Him, He’s never been wrong.
Trials may come and temptations assail me
Though I may falter, He never will fail me;
So Satan I bind you in His holy name
For at the cross Jesus’ blood overcame!
When the doubt comes, when I’m lonely
When my heart is sad;
I’ll lift up mine eyes to my Savior above
And Jesus will make me glad.
When in my heart there is sadness and sorrow
Jesus has promised a brighter tomorrow;
Victory is mine, yes, it’s already won
I’ve only to claim it by faith in God’s Son.
All of my cares I will cast down before Him
Even in trials my heart will adore Him;
He bears my burdens, He comforts my soul
Oh why should I worry when He’s in control?
Lord in the time of deep grief and emotion
I will yet serve You with constant devotion;
You have not failed me one step of the way
That is the reason I’ll trust You and say:
I will praise You! I will praise You!
Jesus Christ my King;
For You fill my heart with a song in the night
Yes, You make my heart to sing!
The below was copied and pasted from http://daveyblackburn.com/posts/run-toward-the-roar by Davey Blackburn:
“Perhaps one of the most impactful books I’ve read in this season is Levi Lusko’s Through the Eyes of a Lion. I talk more about this book in this post. I’m excited to have the opportunity to spend a couple days with Levi in May and visit his church. Levi lost his 5-year-old daughter 2 years ago to a freak asthma attack. She died in his arms as he was trying to revive her. Amanda and I heard his story 2 weeks before Amanda was killed. We were in tears on a train to a romantic getaway in Chicago as we listened to him preach a message at Elevation Church. The message was about how he and his family had learned to overcome the greatest trial in their life through the resurrection power of Jesus. I look back on that moment and know that God was preparing us to walk through the greatest trial of both of our lives…one that would take Amanda’s life, and one that would knock the breath out of mine.
One the most profound concepts he wrote about is this concept of “Running Toward the Roar.” Let me un-pack it:
Most of us have seen a National Geographic or Discovery Channel special of lions hunting in the plains of Africa. What you may not know is that it’s not the males but the females, the lionesses, that are actually the hunters. The males are inherently too slow and lazy. Sounds not unlike the human species!
The male does play a specific role, however. He will get on one side of a watering hole where gazelles or wildebeests have chosen to bath. He will flare his mane, get as tall as he possibly can and let out a ferocious roar that would shake the nerves of any living creature within a 50 mile radius! The roar is supposed to scare the prey into running away. What the prey doesn’t know is that the lionesses have strategically placed themselves on the opposite side of the watering hole. So when the wildebeest is running AWAY from the roar into what they think is safety, they are actually running straight into an ambush. If they would have run TOWARD the roar, as counterintuitive and frightening as it may seem, they would actually be able to scamper away into safety. The male lion’s “bark” is much more dangerous than his bite.
Scripture says that our enemy, Satan, prowls around like a ROARING lion, seeking whom he could devour. The reality is if you are a Christian, you are not in danger of being devoured by the enemy. He has no claim over your life. You are a new creation, and no longer a slave to the curse of sin and death. But the enemy can scare you into being devoured by pain and fear. In fact, his intention is to steal, kill and destroy. He wants to steal your joy, kill your hope, and destroy the purposes God has for your life.
What people will often do when they encounter a trial, a tragedy, or a painful experience is they will try to run away from the pain. Pain is terrifying. It’s messy. It sneaks up on you and can cripple you in an instant. It knocks the breath out of you. But it can’t kill you. Most people are fearful of stepping into the pain, letting their heart feel the full weight of it, working through it, and giving it over to the Lord. It’s makes you feel too exposed and vulnerable. And so they never actually come to a place of healing. So what people try to do is box up the pain. They run away from it. The only problem is that by doing so they are running straight into an ambush. Months, years, even decades down the road it will ambush them and take them out. When you try to box it up, it booby traps you later – this time with even more ferocity.
My family and I have decided to adopt Levi Lusko’s approach. Instead of running away from the pain we’ve decided to run toward it. We’ve decided to embrace it. We’ve decided to deal with it head-on.
So when I’m driving down the road and a song comes on that reminds me of Amanda, instead of turning it as fast as I can, I’ll listen to the whole thing. I may weep uncontrollably the whole time. On one occasion I had to pull the car over to the shoulder because I was crying so hard I couldn’t see the road in front of me. But that’s ok!
When people want to talk about Amanda, I gladly talk about her. I don’t shy away from conversations. It doesn’t matter how awkward or painful that conversation may be.
When I get caught up daydreaming of a memory of Amanda, I let myself feel the full weight of the void. I don’t want to bottle it up and push it away. I don’t want it to booby trap me later!
Perhaps the greatest example of running toward the roar we were faced with recently was going back into my house where Amanda was killed. As much as I didn’t want to step back into that living room where I found her, I knew I couldn’t keep that boxed up. The morning I returned, I put worship music in my earbuds, laid down in the spot I found her, wept, prayed and worshipped. And I’ll tell you, something miraculous happened. About 45 minutes of running toward the roar and I was better. I had released it all. The darkness that, in my mind, had hovered over that location was now taken captive by a risen savior and I wasn’t afraid of it anymore.
Initially when you run toward the roar it’s excruciating; but eventually it’s healing.
You can’t selectively numb your heart. You can’t numb the parts of your heart that feel pain and still be attuned to the parts that feel pleasure. You either numb it all, or you feel it all. There is no alternative. Maybe that’s why Psalm 30 talks about God turning our mourning into dancing. In order to feel the joy of dancing on the other side you must be willing to step into the sting of mourning.
So what roar do you need to run toward today?”
I had another chemo infusion yesterday that went a-OK , just two to go in the next three weeks: hip-hip-hooray! I am so grateful for the Lord’s grace and help through all of this.
Joy shared this Ann Voscamp quote with me before my infusion and it was an encouragement to me:
And do not pray for the hard thing to go away.
But pray for a bravery bigger than the hard thing.”
Running towards the “roar” of cancer, hand in hand with my Savior,