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ColorfulEyeMy friends, I don’t think I ever shared in detail about how things played out with my daughter’s cancer. Maybe it needed to be now so that I can share in context of how God comes, shows up and works in ways that are blatantly astonishing or the opposite, so subtle that we don’t realize until after the fact.

For those who don’t know the story, my youngest daughter was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor on October 1, 2008. Two weeks later she would have her first surgery to relieve the pressure on her brain and take a biopsy. They also wanted to insert a port in her chest for her chemotherapy.

What God did: He used Leslie to touch the heart of our hospital social worker very deeply. She told us seeing how Leslie handled it all made her rethink her own faith. Leslie also surprised the staff in that she was able to go home a day earlier than expected. (The order for the port fell through. Some kind of miscommunication.)

Next stage. The biopsy report said it was Grade 4 cancer. That’s the most aggressive rating and a very hard thing to hear for your child. They wanted to plan an out patient surgery to insert her port, but again there was confusion and the order fell through the cracks. Two weeks later she would undergo full brain surgery to remove the tumor. They would insert the port at the same time if they were able to do the surgery and not keep her under too long.

We were also warned that the area they were going in (the back of her head) could cause issues with her eyes. Specifically, she may not be able to lift her eyes anymore. Not a big deal, not in light of saving her life. We could handle that.

What God did: When they woke Leslie the next day, the first thing they checked was her eyes. She could immediately look up without any issue. The doctors also told us they were able to remove (actually suck it out) the entire tumor. Originally they were not sure if they would have to do it in pieces so as not to remove too much of her brain tissue. The tumor wasn’t attached. They didn’t have to remove any of her brain tissue. I just recently learned that isn’t normal. Tumors attach.

And yet again, no port. She was already under too long and they didn’t want to risk it. That would have to be scheduled yet another time. I was frustrated of course, because she had gone through so much already. Now to face another procedure? But we would deal with it.

What God did: The report came back. The doctors were surprised. The results showed it was a Grade 3 cancer. Not 4. They even sent it to another hospital in St. Louis to recheck it. Leslie would only need radiation, no chemo.

That is when the light came on my friends. What I took as complications was the hand of God protecting my daughter. Had they put the port in, they would have had to just remove it. There are even more stories that happened during my daughter’s recovery, like our nurse practitioner looking at one of Leslie’s later MRIs and saying in total surprise that there was absolutely no more inflammation, which again, was not the norm.

The big picture of what God did is still coming to light. He came in and brought healing to Leslie. His healing. His way. His timing.

Sometimes what God is doing isn’t obvious in the midst of our trials and challenges. Sometimes we are too wrapped up in what’s going on to see it, or sometimes we can’t see what God has done or is doing until later on because that's how God wants it.

And it has nothing to do with how “good” a Christian we are. Look at Paul, look at Peter. One man was the severest of skeptics, the other believed himself to have “arrived” yet realized through his own failure that he still had more to learn about faith in Christ. Paul became the voice of Jesus to the Gentiles and Peter became the Church.

All God asks of us is to be willing, just to surrender our heart, our flesh, our soul—all to Him and then He says, “Watch what I do.”

Let’s watch what He does.

Praying & believing,

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