Driving up the winding mountain roads leading to the campgrounds, I was reminded of this person I met last year at my kids’ camp. I remembered us sitting together and complaining about how nauseous we were.
This afternoon, as I searched for that face among other campers, there he walks in late, calling himself ‘Lost Landry’ and joined us for the parent orientation. One look at him, and I was a little surprised at his appearance, which didn’t look the fit, healthy look he had last year.
Done with the parent meeting, I casually asked him if he had lost weight. His casual answer that it was due to his cancer alarmed me. He said it so lightly like it was not a big deal, like it was just another migraine or such. Feeling embarrassed for asking him about his weight loss, I apologized. He in turn, went on to talk about it a little more, talking about the goodness of the Lord instead of the problem itself. I slowly started to feel small and embarrassed at myself. Wasn’t all this enough eye-opener thing for me, didn’t the Lord think it was enough for me? No, not the Lord, and not the man, Ken Landry!! The Lord was intentional about his teaching, but not this man, who had no clue what was happening inside of me at that moment!
I shared with him about the emotional battle that I have been going through for the past 11 years due to my mom’s history of cancer. This is when our conversation went on to take a different turn. Here’s this man physically looking less stronger than I looked, going through a first hand- painful situation than I am, talking and ministering to me about the grace, love, and the plan of Jesus. While here’s me – fearful, insecure, and distraught about the indirect impact of cancer on me. This man was so full of pure joy in the Lord and His love and trust in the Lord was so mature that nothing seemed to shake Him – not even the thought of death. He didn’t ignore the fact that his body went through intense physical pain, and that he felt exhausted but that even in that ordeal, the Lord could make him laugh.
Ken offered to pray for me interceding before the Lord to help me overcome this fear, praying for my mom and this whole situation! And there I was standing with my eyes closed, praying together but overcome with new emotions……duh! Now, I felt even smaller before this man and felt terribly ashamed of myself. Me, a so-called child of the Heavenly Father feeling so insecure, indulging in the negativities of my situation and here’s a person so full of faith, trust and love of the same Heavenly Father unafraid of anything but holy fear of the Lord, ministering to me. This emotion of shame was not the purpose or intent of the moment– not the Lord’s nor Ken’s. Jesus wanted me to focus on His love for me and my mother, His grace and His power and on who He is! What a testimony!
I went to bed that night, unable to sleep for a while, tossing and turning in bed for a while, my face probably stained with tears, feeling overwhelmed with more emotions and a new look into my situation. Why do I look at my problems more than focusing on the Lord? Why do I not proclaim the goodness of the Lord than talk about the problems, and give more credit to it than necessary? I need to learn to give up fighting the battles in my life with my own understanding and trust the Lord to do His will, for His plan and love for me is greater than I can imagine!!
“Nothing can separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow – nor even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below –indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord”. – Romans 8:38-39 (NIV)