Four months ago, I met a woman with stage 4 breast cancer, and she has been taking chemotherapy and radiation for almost two years now. She told me, “The doctors say there’s nothing more they can do. The chemo isn’t working. I will be dead in about 6 months.” Obviously, this comment left me speechless, so she filled the silence by saying, “It’s okay. I know where I’m going.”
I was so encouraged by that woman, because in the face of one of the worst diseases, she still had a faith that could move mountains. Her smile was from ear to ear. Her speech was upbeat. Although she had been a victim of cancer for nearly two years, she lived as if everything was happening for a reason. She knew God was in control.
Her children have already grown up and moved out of the house, and she went through a divorce a few years ago. She lives alone, but she has not been fighting her cancer alone. Since the treatments make her so weak, she has been unable to work for the past year. She told me that as soon as she told her church to start praying for her, a good friend approached her and said that his family would make her mortgage payments for her. After failing to receive an electric bill in the mail for three months, she called the local electric company. They informed her that someone else had been paying the bills. Her chemotherapy and radiation schedule is posted in the church office, along with a sign up sheet so people can volunteer to take her. Some of the ladies in the church even buy her groceries each week and take her out to lunch on Sundays after church.
That was four months ago when we spoke. I met her son on Tuesday. He said she probably won’t make it to next week. As soon as the doctors stopped treatments, the cancer spread to other organs in her body. With a smile, her son said, “She’s going to heaven.” He then went on to tell me how amazing his mom’s church has been throughout this ordeal. Not a day went by that someone from church failed to stop by her house and visit. He added, “Without the church’s help, we would not have been able to get through this.”
God smiles at this.