Wednesday, March 9, 2011

My Last Day of Radiation

*I've been working on this post for a couple of days now.  My fatigue has really increased since last Wednesday - probably because my stress level increased that day too.  Sorry for the delay.  I can't wait to share with you what God has been doing!  Please bare with me as I try to get caught up.  It will take several posts to share everything God has laid on my heart, so please keep checking back.  Also, I have a follow-up appointment with my surgeon today (Tuesday) to discuss future treatment, etc.

Thursday 3/3/11 was my very last day of radiation.  After going to treatment for 6 1/2 weeks, the people there became my friends.  I am going to miss them.  And because of them, last Thursday was a very emotional day.

This is Jessica.  She is a student who I would see every MWF.  She was always smiling, and she took good care of me.  Remember when I had to get tattooed and I asked them if they could do a cross?  Well, every time Jessica would help set me up (there were 3 different marks that had to line up on the radiation machine via light beams), she would say "I know her vert (one of the marks) is crisscross."  The first time I heard her say that, I said "I knew I was going to get my CROSS!!!  I knew it!  Everytime yall set me up, yall see a cross!"  GOD IS SO GOOD!

This is John - the only male except for Dr. Bobo.  Bless him!  He is great and has a wonderful sense of humor.  This is Ms. Rachel beside him.  This was her last day too!  Sweet lady who loves the Lord and knows about His tender provision.

Here is the rest of the crew.  (I took Jessica & John's pictures a day or 2 early because they were not going to be there on Thursday.)  Below are the other radiation techs: (L to R: Jessica, Tami & April)

(Back Row L to R: Donna, Nurse Kitty, Tami, Jessica; Front L to R: Nurse Vanessa & April)

Amazing people.  I miss them already!  One of my buddies, Tonya, was out sick so I will take her picture when I have my follow-up appointment on April 1.

God gave me some special time with these ladies too.  The entire 6 1/2 weeks I had treatment, patients were being seen every 10 minutes!  It was always busy.  However, several of us in the afternoon all finished last week.  So, after my actual treatment on Thursday at 2:40pm, the next patient wasn't scheduled until 3:30pm.  I had the entire staff to myself for about 30 minutes!  ONLY GOD!

When you "graduate," they have a little "ceremony" for you involving stones.  I was handed a bowl and asked to pick out a stone.  I wanted a purple one but couldn't find one.  A unique white one caught my eye, so I chose it.  Then the staff gathered around me and Nurse Kitty said, " In history In the BIBLE, stones were used for a lot of things like weapons and tools, but they were also used for memorials.  And that is what your stone is is a memorial of your journey."  She said lots of other things that made me cry!  And she cried right along with me.

After the ceremony, I put my stone in a bowl filled with lots of other stones from people who had also completed treatment. 
As I was taking this picture, I made mention that God had just told me on Tuesday to make a memory book about something else in my life (my call to minister to Africa) so that when times get tough in the future & I start to question whether or not God really wants me ministering there, I can pull out my memory book (memorial stone) and know for sure it was His call.  Then Nurse Kitty said, "You know God told His people to do that time and time again in the Bible.  He did it so they would always remember His faithfulness."

Then she said, "Nancy, you need to pick out a stone to take with you."  I said, "Why don't you pick one out for me?"  Here is the stone she handed me.....
It is PURPLE!!!  She gave me the purple one I couldn't find!  In that moment here is what God brought to my mind: 

The white stone (that I chose and put in the bowl) represents newness of life, starting over, a new season, being a new creation because of Christ.  When we invite Jesus Christ into our lives, His blood on the cross washes away our sins and makes us whiter than snow.  Jesus makes us pure, blameless, righteous, holy. 

The same thing happens every time we repent and ask God to forgive us of our sins (after salvation.)  It is so important that we confess our sins DAILY and stay close to Him - otherwise our sin will separate us from Him & His best for us. Through His forgiveness, we are given a clean slate, a new beginning, freedom, another opportunity to serve Him for His glory.  

As for the purple, it represents royalty in the Bible.  When we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we become part of His family.  We become Daughters of the King.  Sons of the King.  Purple reminds us of who we belong to because of Christ and who we are in Christ.  We have "spiritual royalty" because of our Savior.

Jesus said, "I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of My Father’s hand."  John 10:28-29   

And once we are adopted into God's family, no one or no thing can take us away from Him. PERIOD. We belong to Him. WE ARE HIS CHILDREN.

So the white stone and the purple stone were used by God to remind me of who I am in Christ and what He has done and will continue to do in my life.  (This leads right into what God gave me for my birthday on Monday.  I will share that in another post.)

Imagine my surprise and tears when I pulled up in front of my house on Monday and found this...THANK YOU TO THE SWEET SECRET PERSON(S) WHO DID THIS FOR ME!!!  WOW!
Beautiful flowers in PURPLE and WHITE!!!  ONLY GOD!  ONLY GOD!  I am overwhelmed.  So undeserving.  Yet, He continues to love me and speak to me.  And so many times, He does it through YOU!  

Like when you bring me and my family dinner....
This mystery person is Sheri J. from church.  She is beautiful but had been working around her house all day and felt a little camera shy.  This picture was our compromise! THANK YOU SO MUCH SHERI!!!  It was absolutely delicious!  THANK YOU!

Then a surprise dinner arrived from my friend Mendy.  THANK YOU MENDY!  YUMMY!!!  What a blessing it was - I was gone both Friday & Saturday nights during dinner but God used Mendy to feed my family!  (I ate some for lunch myself!) THANK YOU! 

God provides for our needs in amazing ways, doesn't He?  

Standing in awe of HIM,

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