Friday, January 16, 2009

Helping Fight Breast Cancer

When my friend Heather asked a few days ago if she could be a guest poster on my blog my first thought was, "wow that's a great way to get information out to a wide variety of people". Duh, guess I'd never really thought about my blog in that manner before. I am more than happy to help her spread the word about their upcoming Breast Cancer 3-Day Walk! Her family's story is very inspiring, and I love that they have set such a lofty goal for their team's fundraising. Let's help them get there...

And now, for the first time ever I'm turning my blog over to someone else for a bit... take it away Heather.

Thanks MB for letting me do a guest blog!! I have known Mary Beth for several years now…we went to college together. I read her blog regularly and I have such an admiration for her and her outlook on life and love and dealing with four silly sisters….and a lot of the time while Scott is overseas! I have two girls of my own (3 years apart) and that is hard enough, so I find myself daydreaming about what it would be like to be MB. I know a LOT of her readers here are parents of multiples so hats off to you and the craziness in your houses! It take a lot of love and dedication and patience on your part.

The reason I’m blogging today is that I wanted to share with you a story…..a story also of love and dedication and patience…..with an amazing outcome….the story of my mom’s battle with breast cancer. You see, God works. He works in everything…it just takes some time and patience to see HOW He is working.

My name is Heather Freeman….I live in Chicago…oh blah blah blah….let’s get to the good stuff. The following is my mom’s story about her fight with breast cancer and her testimony through it. It is my hope that this will touch someone, maybe someone that has a personal connection with this terrible disease or someone who just needs to be reminded of God’s love and how powerful He truly is regardless of the situation. Here goes…it’s long, but her touching words are worth it……

Nearly 7 years ago I was diagnosed with breast cancer……and from the moment I found out I knew that I had nothing to fear.

Because of my faith, I know that nothing touches us that God does not allow. Quite simply, if He allows it then He also has a plan. Of course, I didn’t know what that plan was but I know that He knew about this cancer before I was ever even born. For that reason…..from day 1, I asked God to use this for His glory. I knew that if I could trust Christ with my very soul then I could certainly trust him with a mere tumor. Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that it was something that I wanted to go through or that I would ever want to go through again….but God pulled me close and gave me a peace that is unexplainable. . . one that took me from the moment we got the diagnosis to the moment I was declared cancer free.

My first surgery was 15 hours because of complications. Then, just two days later I had to go back into surgery. I didn’t understand but I told God that I was just giving it all to Him and trusting Him. He had certainly comforted me before, but this is when He really started to move. My mother was there for that second surgery. See, my husband and I had been praying for my mother for over 35 years….praying for her to come to know Christ as her savior but it was not something she was interested in talking about. For the entire 35 years, we never gave up on praying for her. I had a very deep burden for her salvation and I had asked God several times to use whatever it takes for my mom to come to Him. As my husband was walking me into surgery I asked him to go back to my room while I was in surgery and give my mother the gospel once again and to make it as clear and simple as God made it for us. I can remember being taken back to the recovery room after the surgery and I could hear the nurses in the background saying you can’t come in here yet….and then I could hear my husband’s voice saying “and you can’t stop me.” He walked over to me and kissed me and said “Your mother just trusted Christ as her savior”. I then remember looking at him and saying that it was all worth it. God knew this was the time and I am so grateful to have a husband that loves the Lord so much that during such a difficult time for him he was willing to put his feelings aside and share Christ’s love with my mom….to continue with the effort for which I had had a burden for so very long. My mom went home to be with Jesus the following year. God heard our prayers.

This cancer thing… was a difficult time but a time that Christ pulled me so close and taught me so much. He blessed me with so many wonderful friends who provided meals and house cleanings and so many other needs. My family was wonderful… husband, son and three daughters. They cared for me with such love and compassion and they did things for me that I never wanted them to have to do but thanked God that they were willing to do whatever it took to get me back to good health. He worked such a work in their lives also and taught them so much about the power of prayer. To this day I am so thankful for everything from them and from God.

When God works, God works big! He didn’t just leave it there….one night during the middle of my chemotherapy treatment days, He woke me up in the middle of the night and I knew that He had something very important that He wanted to tell me. I was so tired and sick but I knew I had to listen. I got up and went to sit on the couch. After a few minutes I picked up my bible and began reading where I had left off earlier. I had been reading through the Gospels during the chemo and left off at John 9. As I began reading, it was a story I had read so many times before but this time it took on a whole new meaning. It was the story of the blind man. “As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents that he was born blind?” “Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened that the work of God might be displayed in his life.” I knew that my loving God was waking me up to tell me that my cancer was for his glory. I never have to wonder or ask why because he let me know. Was it for my mom’s salvation or for some other reason? I don’t know. But I do know that God received the glory. I often think what if I had chosen to stay in bed that night and not listen. I would have missed out on such a big piece of this journey.

I will be walking in the Chicago 3Day walk for breast cancer. I am walking to raise money for those that are going through or will be going through this terrible disease. It will be a prayer walk for me. I will be asking God to let me share what He did through my cancer and be able to share his love with the thousands that will be walking with us. I am so excited about walking with my 3 wonderful daughters who have been such an amazing part of my life. I love them more than life itself and am blessed to have them in my life. I also will be walking with one of my dearest friends that God has recently brought back into my life after many years when I needed her friendship. God is so good!

The name of out team is called “Pink Peace”. We want to be able to share the peace that can only come through him even in difficult times. We are walking to Overcome!
John 16:33 says “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Each of our team members needs to raise $2300.00 to be able to walk. We are committed to raising that amount and more if possible – we have set our team goal to $25,000!!! If you would like support us in this journey, even with a dollar, every cent helps fight this disease! If you are unable to contribute financially, please support us in prayer – that God will get the glory and that He will MOVE during this 3-day walk. If you are able to contribute financially, please visit the link to our team page below, where you can make a donation to any team member as we are committed to helping each other out.
Pink Peace Team Site:
Team Members:
Cindy Bryant – Mom
Heather (Bryant) Freeman – Daughter
Erin (Bryant) Minnihan – Daughter
Megan (Bryant) Garrett – Daughter
Pat Snyder – Dear friend of Mom’s

Thanks again MB for allowing us to post this story and “solicit” help in our journey. We truly believe sharing this story can have an impact on those who have gone through or are currently going through this kind of ordeal.

In Him,
Heather (Bryant) Freeman


Denise Wheeler said...

What a touching story! I cried all the way through. MB that is so wonderful that you had her as a guest blogger. I wish I could afford to donate to their cause but I can't, so, I will pray like crazy for them.