By Karen Floan
Watching the chemo drugs drip into Wayne’s body, I felt a sense of helplessness. The new drugs were for a new cancer—aggressive lymphoma (MCL)—found in my husband last fall. In 2012, Wayne’s leukemia (CML) had been frightening news, but with advanced oral TK-cancer drugs, remission had been achieved. Retirement plans, travel ideas, and some selected projects had been in our thoughts.
Now these hopes were abandoned and ominous questions surfaced instead. Would Wayne be able to tolerate the chemo drugs? Would the drugs fight the cancer? What would the future hold? How much time would we have? Where would we live?
Scriptures surfaced in an answer like advertisements interrupting a television show. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; Do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9).
More verses followed: “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me” (Psalms 23:4).
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5–6).
After Wayne’s second chemo treatment, this Scripture came to mind: “But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows” (Luke 12:7). I chuckled slightly, wondering how many of Wayne’s hairs were left for God to count! We had been warned his thick hair would fall out with treatments, but it was hard to see this visible reality of cancer. “What is man, that thou art mindful of him?” (Psalm 8:4).
“HELP Lord!” is what I find myself praying often now. Help for strength, help for Wayne, help for the future.
I recently gave Wayne an interesting book called, The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse, by Charlie Mackesy. The book has a lot of short sayings for life, such as: ‘“What is the bravest thing you’ve ever said?’ asked the boy. ‘HELP.’ said the horse.”
It is hard to ask others for help, maybe because of our Scandinavian heritage or because it might convey weakness. But when I cry out to the Lord, He answers, “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me (II Corinthians 12:9).
Wayne and I don’t know what the future holds, but we know and believe in the One Who promises to be with us and sustain us. “Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me” (Psalm 54:4).
Karen Floan [FLBC, 1974] and her husband Wayne [FLBC, 1972] are members of Grace Free Lutheran, Maple Grove, Minn. Wayne serves as the director of maintenance on the AFLC Schools campus.
Kinship is a magazine of the FLBCS. Stay up to date on the latest news, student stories, classroom highlights, and fun tidbits about life on the FLBC and FLS campus.
View the latest edition of Kinship here: Kinship Winter 2020 Edition