I don’t always understand myself, do you? Why I feel one way today and very differently tomorrow. Nor do I always understand why I react the way I do or why my body affects my emotions the way it does or my mind affects my spirit.
That’s why Psalm 139 is so precious to us who love Christ. It reminds us that there is One who knows us perfectly – our rising up, our sitting down, the words we speak before we say them, as well as the bad things about us that no one else knows and which we’ve thankfully forgotten. And yet, even though we stand naked before Him, He loves us dearly and safely leads us through life’s trials guiding us with His perfect wisdom. This ought to give us a great sense of well-being, especially at those times when we do not know what to do or how to pray.
Cheryl and I faced such a dilemma last night. Cheryl is a cancer survivor who finished chemo and radiation in November and had surgery in December to remove any remaining cancer cells. From a clinical standpoint, she has a 95% chance of survival. However, the truth about the body is that our parts are intricately connected and dependent on one another for good health. Perhaps this is what the Psalmist had in mind when he wrote: “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb; I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” The body is wonderful because of its brilliant design and God-given ability to rejuvenate itself when injured. However, it is also fearful in the sense of how carefully balanced its systems are. (Click on picture below for full size.)
So when 16 lymph nodes were removed from the right side of Cheryl’s abdomen for biopsy, it hindered her body’s ability to drain the fluid causing lymphedema (swelling in her leg), which sets her up for infection. That was the situation we faced last night. It looks like the infection is returning. Should we check you into the hospital? Or should we wait and pray and hope it gets better? For those interested in how God designed the lymph system and why you need your lymph nodes, click here for a concise and excellent explanation – Lymph System.
Well, the good news is that Cheryl is now receiving excellent care at St. Peter Hospital in Olympia. The doctors and nurses have been fantastic, and she is now on IV antibiotics to kill the infection in her leg. They’ve also done a CT scan to make sure that an abscess has not developed. If it has, she may have to undergo surgery. We are praying that won’t be necessary. But the best news of all is that God knows every detail about her body, mind, and spirit and what she needs even before she needs it. He is her Good Shepherd who will lead us in the right path for her care. With so many wonderful brothers and sisters in Christ praying with us, how could we ever doubt that! As for me, I am selfishly full of praise because I still have the wife of my youth whom I love with all my heart sharing life with me, no matter what comes our way. How can it get any better than that!
So with the Psalmist, I say: “How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you…Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:17-18, 23-24