Christine here: Today, Shirely Corder gives us her final installment on my blog. I hope her story encourages you, especially if you are going through the Cancer Valley.
About two years after my cancer treatment ended, I attended a cancer survivors' seminar in Cape Town, South Africa, with my oncologist and some other cancer survivors. Part of the program included a panel of ladies sharing their cancer experiences. I listened in dumbstruck amazement as one after the other gave praise for cancer. That's right. For cancer.
The last woman to speak gripped the mike and blurted out, "Cancer ruined my life!" She dissolved in tears, and a couple of ladies rushed forward to assist her from the stage. One of the leaders got up to explain that the poor woman was only a few months out of her treatment regime, and that it took time to gain perspective on something as drastic as cancer.
"Gain perspective?" I said to my husband when I got home. "She's the only one that made sense! The others are crazy. Sure, I'm thankful God brought me through it, but to be thankful for cancer? Never."
I knew of the promise in Romans 8:28 that "in all things God works for the good of those who love him." But honestly? How could that include cancer?
As I mentioned in my previous post, once my treatment was over, doors started to open for me in the writing field. At the age of 60 years, I flew unaccompanied from Cape Town via London to the United States of America where I attended a writers' conference in Baltimore. The Lord provided finances for the trip in miraculous ways. A few years later, I started work on a book of meditations in which I shared 90 stories of how the Lord blessed and protected me through the journey of cancer.
In 2010, I flew from Johannesburg to attend another conference, this time in Florida, USA. While there, I met an editor who liked my book, and in 2012 it was published by a mainline publisher in the States.
Today, I can see how much richer my life has become because of cancer. I speak at meetings on a variety of topics. But they all bring out the same point. I am thankful for cancer, the lessons I learned and the blessings I received. Would I go through it again? I pray daily that I will never have to. I hated every moment of the journey. Yet I can honestly say I'm grateful for the experience.
I guess I have gained perspective.
Oh . . . one more thing. When Scripture says in Romans 8:28, "in all things God works for good to those who love him"? Yes, that even includes cancer.
Purchase Strength Renewed (print or Kindle)
Purchase from Barnes and Noble (print or Nook)
Rise and Soar Website (encouragement for those in the cancer valley)