In the book, Strengthening Your Grip, Charles Swindoll writes, “Attitude is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company, a church, a home. The remarkable thing is, we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past. We cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude.”
From the beginning of my journey battling the cancer in my throat and neck my Dr.’s talked to me about the importance of having a positive attitude. I like to think that I’ve been able to live up to that advice for the past 10 weeks but the truth is there have been times…there have been moments when I have really battled with anxiety and fear. But each time that has happened I have been able, eventually, to remember that Satan deals in anxiety and fear and because of the shed blood of Jesus on the cross, Satan has no power over me. Each time I have reminded myself that Satan hates to hear the name of Jesus, the Word of God and the truth about Jesus’ death on the cross that rendered him powerless. So I have reminded him of those things and moved on. It wasn’t always easy, but it was always right.
Another positive thing is the way my wife, Sandy, has been able to remind me that from the very beginning when my Dr.’s all told me that this cancer was very treatable and curable, everything they have said to me has been positive. That continues to be the case and so that’s what I need to remember. The latest example happened today when I saw my Radiology Oncologist and he was just amazed at where I was in the recovery process. He told me that I still had a lot of healing to do in my mouth and throat but that he was just amazed at how I looked and my level of energy. At one point he called me his “miracle patient” and said that I was an encouragement to him and his staff. They all know that I’ve got thousands of people praying for me and they acknowledged that power in my recovery.
So here I am a little more than two weeks out from my treatment and I’m doing really well. I’ve been getting out and doing a variety of different things and I’m getting more and more anxious to return to church. Tomorrow morning (Sat/10th) Sandy, Tricia and I and a friend are heading south for a few days. We’ll be in the Savannah, GA – Hilton Head, S.C. area. We’ll visit my brother and his family, walk on the beach and I’m hoping to hit some golf balls. We’re all looking forward to the trip. Please continue to pray for me and my family. This week I’ve begun (slowly) to try and eat and it is a real challenge. But I’ve already overcome some huge challenges so there’s no reason to believe that I can’t do this.
As always I want you to know how much I love you and how much your encouragement and prayers have meant to me. I know I wouldn’t be doing as well as I am today without you. Because of that I’ll close this blog with a new list of prayer requests as well as some ongoing.
- The complete destruction and eradication of the cancer in my neck and throat (still several weeks away from a follow-up PET scan).
- The ability to transition from the feeding tube to being able to eat by mouth (there’s no timetable pressure here but I’ll be glad when the feeding tube can be removed).
- The ability to produce saliva (the radiation has really burned up my saliva glands…some will return…some may not).
- The return of my taste buds (my Dr. told me this could take a long time but then he followed that up by saying, “But you’re doing so well, who knows?”).
- Safe travel to Savannah and back.
See you soon,