My dear husband is coming home today! It’s bittersweet. The storm cloud hanging over his Homecoming, is that’s he’s far opposite from well. It seems so wrong, so unfair, to be leaving the hospital after two weeks; only to still be severely ill. Yet, the silver lining is he’s coming home! We’ve missed him, and our family cannot wait to go back to our fun-loving, friendship-filled, faithfully loyal unit.
We have several changes at home. It’s been stressful, and we’re tired. The hardest challenge has been completely undoing our Sleep Number King bed (Don’t get one!) and transforming it into two side by side XL twins. Giving up perfectionism, I’m no longer concerned about everything matching. Dave has requested Batman sheets, and Star Wars! We want to give him his childhood comforts. My son, Jake, and I shopped till we dropped yesterday. Some things we found; others are coming soon.
Both our young men have been working their jobs, and coming home to work again. Jake’s twin, Nick, is chronically ill, yet has still been pulling his weight. I’m also battling chronic illness, but miraculously have been able to run full force in strength through Jesus. How else could I end up cleaning the bathroom til 5 a.m. ? No other way! Our preteen daughter Abby has been pitching in more, as well. Friends and family are going above and beyond, blessing us with caretaking, play dates, meals, fun gifts, and much more. It’s about Dave right now. It’s about being the hands and feet of Jesus. There is still joy!
Dave has a long road ahead of him, not quite knowing where it ends on the map of his life. Right now he’s resting up to get strong enough to withstand chemotherapy. Chemo for Christ: Given a choice, no one would choose to go through chemotherapy. There are lots of ways we can tell people about Jesus. But what if one is willing to go through suffering, pain, and even death; just so more people can make it to Heaven? We have no control over what happens to us here on earth, yet we do have the ability to walk in the footsteps of Jesus, allowing God to lead us, making a difference for the Kingdom of God. In doing so, we receive blessings like joy, comfort, and peace. We are able to bless others in our dire circumstances, as people witness our strength through Jesus.
God didn’t do this to Dave. The devil did, for we live in a fallen, evil world. But because Dave belongs to God, God can use it for good in our lives, and ultimately for His glory. This means God already knew the cancer would happen, and he’ll bring good and glory out of the pain and suffering: “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Rom. 8:28 NIV).
Dave is willing to submit to God’s will by suffering through cancer, in order to illustrate how powerful it is to rely on strength through Jesus. We hope to bring comfort to others struggling through earthly trials, by finding the silver lining in Jesus Christ. We are praying for God’s will, no matter how difficult it’s going to be. That’s how strongly we believe in faith in God, and His Son, Jesus Christ. It means Dave would say yes to having cancer, and going through chemo, if God said it would bring more people to Jesus. We believe it will.
Jesus is our perfect example. He laid down his life… but he did it for the entire world! Jesus didn’t want to suffer either. Jesus was sweating blood when he prayed in the Garden of Gethsamane. He hoped there was a different way. But there was not. He knelt, prayed, and submitted to the will of his Father: “ ‘Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done’ ” (Lk. 22:42).
Jesus suffered and died on the cross, so we could have eternal life. But ultimately, he was raised from the dead, and lived! Dave will do the same. Whether it means more, or less time on earth; once it is his time to die, he will live again eternally with Jesus in Heaven. That’s what we both want for everyone who reads his testimony. “For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his” (Rom. 6:5).
In every war, there are casualties. Of course we absolutely do not want Dave to be one of them. We don’t want to lose him; we want as much time as possible with our godly husband, father, caretaker, and provider. We want to see him become a senior, father of the bride and grooms, a grandfather, the other half of the 50th Golden Anniversary couple, and a crabby, but cute little old man! But no matter how bad it gets on earth, it will all be temporary. When his time is up, he is headed for Heaven! We’re headed there too! We want our loved ones and others to join us one day.
Still, this is really, really, REALLY hard! How does he keep going? How do we keep going? Dave is a soldier. He marches on with the goal of winning, no matter the cost. And we march along beside him in assurance, proud to be in God’s Army, guaranteed a BIG VICTORY! Dave is fighting with Strength through Jesus. We continue to pray for a miraculous healing, because only Jesus can do it!
“Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint” (Is. 40: 30-31 NIV).
Thank you God that Dave is home! We are filled with joy! We pray that many will find comfort and strength through Jesus because of Dave’s trial fighting rare cancer. We pray that many will find salvation through Jesus Christ. We continue to pray for the miraculous healing of Dave’s body, from head to toe by the blood of Jesus. May Your will be done Lord God, in Jesus’ name!
Thank you to our family and friends and beyond! We appreciate your prayers, encouragement, love, and support! We would not be able to handle this so gracefully without you! Please continue to share Dave’s testimony posts to help others. It’s for Dave, it’s for me; but most of all, it’s to bring people to Jesus! We love you all!
Some posts may overlap, but if you continue scrolling, you’ll find many more relatable posts.
Angela Royse Pelleman