The last three months of our life ... and particularly, the last few days ... seem to have been riddled with serious illness.
One of our dearest friends was diagnosed with tonsil cancer and just finished a most brutal treatment. Just a few weeks later, we learned another friend had multiple strokes and quickly learned he is also battling the enemy called cancer. Shortly thereafter, another dear friend was rushed to the hospital with an unknown cause of fast and drastic weight loss, as well as confusion, and faces a similar diagnosis. Just a day or so later, another dear one who thought he'd strained a muscle in his abdomen was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer that has metastasized to his liver. This morning, through tears on the phone, I learned of a friend of my daughter's who has given birth to her second child -- the first only surviving a few days -- and is enduring the separation of this newborn who has been rushed to another hospital, while she is unable to leave the medical facility where she's being care for because of the surgery necessary to give birth.
I know we are not alone in having lived the punch, punch, punch of difficult news. Many have experienced the same and many more, much worse. My heart aches in these circumstances. But I'm only watching from the sidelines. Praying fervently. Texting when prompted. Calling when appropriate. Loving from a distance. The dear ones I mention and their spouses and children and parents and family members are living in the true reality.
As I sat to write about the last few weeks, about how faithful the Good Shepherd is in every situation. In every circumstance. Maybe even more to remind myself of His goodness and His faithful plan than others, I opened my email to "A Delay When it Seemed to Matter Most," this week's weekly Friday Fragments post by Dan Wolgemuth, President/CEO of Youth for Christ USA.
Nothing else needs to be said.