Some of my earliest memories include moving to a new town when I was just six years old and my baby sister, Emily, being born when I was seven. I don’t remember full details, but rather small moments. I remember my first day of 1st grade in my new school. I remember the classroom, my teacher, Mrs. Goodman, and how nervous I was. When my sister was born, I remember my parents dropping my other sister and I off to stay with nearby neighbors as they headed to the hospital. These are all small snapshots, but so memorable. You could call them mental photos. There aren’t actual photos to flip through or albums on Facebook to browse. These are special moments that I will never forget that have an important meaning to me.
This week has been full of mental photos. As we’ve come home to the US to spend time with Gavin’s dad, I’ve tried to be intentional in capturing special times with our family. Macy and Connor giving Papa hugs throughout the day…snap. Gavin sharing conversations about every day life with his dad…snap. Sitting on the couch in the living room having worship and praying together…snap. These are the moments I don’t want to forget.
Two weeks ago, Gavin’s dad, Don, received news that he has cancer. He went to the doctor, having a hard time breathing and after having a chest x-ray, he was sent to the ER. This is where they discovered cancer in nearly every organ of his body. He was given two weeks to two months to live. Something no person is ever prepared to hear.
After a few days at the hospital, a decision was made to begin chemotherapy treatments. The day after his first treatment he was sent home.
Days and nights are hard. They coincide through short naps, eating small bites and hopes of a relief from pain. Cancer is tough; it’s not easy. But, we believe our God is tougher. We are thankful this journey isn’t one we walk alone. Even as we sat together for worship as a family on Sunday morning, Don said he doesn’t know how people go through this illness without Christ. He has hope in the midst of sickness. It’s what he clings to.
We treasure this time we’ve had to come back from Africa to be with our family. Please join us in prayer for Don. Pray for comfort, pray for relief from pain and above all pray that we would see the hand of God and know His peace that surpasses all understanding.