Is God Still Good

16 Aug

img_4179About a month ago I was scrolling through social media and one of the cancer survivor/fighters I follow had her first scan one year after being told she was cancer free, and it was still clean. This of course is reason to celebrate and her comment was ‘God is so good.’ I hate to say it, but in my mind I thought, What if the scan results did not turn out that way…would she have still said, ‘God is so good’?

I have had a beyond crazy couple of weeks. About 2 weeks ago I was part of a celebration called Brushes With img_4060Cancer. I was matched with an artist (singer) and we collaborated together to create a piece of music with spoken word. There were several other artist/cancer thriver collaborations and the night was beautiful. At the end of the night I was presented a painting from an artist who told me he was inspired by my story and the painting he had been working on that evening was meant for me. Cue the tears of joy, gratitude, awe, etc. I left on a high. God is good. The very next day my 16 year old son suffered a stroke. The very. next. day.

Two weeks ago today, my son suffered a stroke due to AVM, an undetected malformation in the brain from birth. The tears of joy the night before turned into tears of the greatest sorrow and desperation I have ever had. I have never felt such depths of grief until I saw my baby, right side paralyzed, unable to speak that first week, with so much fear in his eyes. Was God still good? I obviously have had my fair share of bad stuff, but that first week (last week) felt like I was in an alternate reality. The words, ‘God only gives you what you can handle,’ meant (means) nothing to me because this, I couldn’t handle. Then there’s, ‘Things happen for a reason,’…what reason? Why do I have Stage 4 cancer and why would my youngest have a stroke? Here’s what I think (and excuse my language), shit happens. It just does. We were not promised heaven on earth or some euphoric life. I live in Michigan, we have long, gray winters, Michigan is not heaven. This is real life.

When Jesus was on earth, He experienced real life too. God doesn’t give us what we can handle, what kind of God would punish us to see what we could handle? I have felt completely helpless in this situation and I can’t handle this on my own, so on the contrary, I believe God helps us handle what we’re given. Ann Voskamp writes, ‘The Writer of the story has written Himself into the hardest places of yours and is softening the edges of everything with redeeming grace.’ I like that, He is softening the edges of this nightmare.

God is still good. In the case of a Christian life instead of ‘seeing is believing’, we have to live by ‘believing is seeing’. Romans 8:25 says, ‘But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.’ This situation sucks. Me having cancer sucks. I know for sure though, that believing in God offers me the hope I need to push forward. This hope is the release needed to say, ‘I have no control over the situation and I hand it to You.’ Erwin McManus says, ‘Our ability to endure, persevere, to overcome is fueled by this one seemingly innocuous ingredient called hope.’  So, having metastatic cancer but still stable after 2 years? God is good. Alex progressing and getting better slowly every day? God is good. The hundreds if not thousands of people who have prayed for us over the past couple of weeks? God is good. Jesus living on this earth and suffering real, human, pain to give us hope? God is good. We will all have some adversity and some, even major tragedies which will be 100% awful and make us question everything. For me, the bits of peace and even the smallest rays of hope come from my faith in a big God, no matter the outcome. I am not alone. Small steps, big God. God is good.


8 Responses to “Is God Still Good”

  1. Shelly Rizzo August 16, 2019 at 12:06 pm #

    So beautiful…..
    So eloquent…..
    So true…..

  2. Sue Wakamoto-Lee August 16, 2019 at 5:54 pm #

    Anna, we haven’t met, but I “know” you through Enrico. When he was here in NorCal last week, I gave him a hug, virtually hugging you as well. My heart broke for you and your son. I was going through a similar pain. We almost lost my 21-year-old the son the week prior to his kidney disease relapsing from an infection that resulted in septic shock and a stay in the ICU. I truly had a hard time praying. I knew in my head that God had him in His hands, but my heart was having a tough time syncing with my head. I let others do the praying when I couldn’t. But, as you noted, God is good. Justin is getting better and feeling stronger. He still has kidney disease, but for now, this is the thorn in his side.

    Still praying for you and Alex. Hugs. // Sue

    • Anna August 16, 2019 at 5:57 pm #

      Thank you ❤️ Prayers for you too

  3. Judy Janke August 17, 2019 at 6:50 am #

    Love you girl! Hugs and prayers still coming your way for the family. And yew God is good!

  4. ernanita cabebe August 29, 2019 at 1:19 am #

    The line “what if the result ain’t good struck me. I am afraid to undergo my CT scan after radiation because I feel good and the scan might proved otherwise. If my faith is challenged, I would like to say, “Let me enjoy moments I feel good even for days. For quite a long time, it was not “(chemo, operation and radiation). Still… my faith is greater than my fear.

    • Anna August 29, 2019 at 5:22 am #

      So true! I have Stage 4 so I have scan every 3-6 months. I have to rely on my faith to get me through no matter the outcome

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