The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. Psalm 103:8
But some are not. Some are dramatic and full of pleading. And I've always kind of skipped through those, not really understanding why David was so up and so down.
I am feeble and crushed; I groan because of the tumult of my heart. Pslam 38:8
I realize now that I used to judge David (imagine that!) and was a bit dismissive of some of his writings. He just seemed too fickle for me...one day he's singing God's praises and declaring how majestic he is and the next he's bemoaning his lot in life and accusing God of forsaking him. I got the part about proclaiming how great and mighty God is, but I skipped over the "why God" and "whoa is me" parts...I am a minimalist when it comes to drama.
But during my second hospital stay, I got it. I came to a low enough place that I could understand and relate to the emotion that David felt when he asked How long, Lord will you forget me? How long will you look the other way?
I've since stopped judging David (and truthfully I've stopped judging a lot of people...the beauty of lessons from cancer) and now I understand, at least at some level, what David was feeling when he wrote his songs and prayers. Part of this week I was feeling the "feeble and crushed" thing.
Two of the days I had nursing care brought two different new-to-me nurses. They were both kind and a bit curious about my story, wanting to clarify some of the things they'd heard and read about me. I confirmed that yes, my surgery was waaaay back on July 2 and also answered their questions about how I discovered there was a problem, how the cancer got diagnosed.
Its depressing when trained medical professionals who have lots of experience dealing with patients respond with shock at the magnitude of what I've been through. Each exchange left me feeling a little more pathetic and weak. I allowed those brief interactions, and the feelings that they stirred up, to stay with me. I lingered in the past, breaking my rule to just do today.
I wondered why my body is not healing. I regretted having to post-pone the half marathon I was registered for. I had jealous thoughts for a friend who "only" has to have a mastectomy surgery. I searched for purpose. I wished it would all go away.
I looked back to a year ago this time, as this week marks one year since the tumor was discovered. A year ago, while I was definitely concerned about the daily pain, I was more concerned with what a colonoscopy was going to cost me than what they were going to find from it. I look back at pictures of myself and think, that had girl had no idea what was coming.
When I remember God I moan; when I meditate, my spirit faints. I am so troubled that I cannot speak.
Like David, my "spirit made a diligent search". I appeal to this, to the years of the right hand of the Most High. Ps. 77:10. David remembers how God brought his people out of slavery and took care of them in the wilderness and I remember how God has taken care of me and provided for my every need.
And my groanings turn into thanks. I praise Him with His breath in my lungs because, in spite of it all, I know that He is God and He is good, and my understanding of my circumstances has nothing to do with that. He cannot change so I know that He will be faithful...He has been good and He will be good to me.
So what can I say? And what can I do? But offer this heart, O God, completely to you.
Thank you for loving this fickle girl who one day trusts in God's unfailing love and the next wonders why He is so far away. I cannot express how much we appreciate each thought and prayer. Team Lisa is a powerful force and we feel your support daily.
Five more to go!