MRI Results

I know everyone is curious about my MRI results and so I wanted to give you a quick update. Overall, they were very encouraging. There were a few suspicious spots of increased blood flow that she is wanting to do a sonogram on and she is recommending me to meet with my oncologist this next week just to start that process. Those appointments are pending.
I was very uneasy and nervous before the MRI – taking a lot of deep breaths – sorta shaky. I was singing my Veggie Tales song in my head in the waiting room (read previous post to know that story). But then I remembered a verse I gave to Regina when she was sick; 2 Timothy 1:7-8 “For God did not give us a spirit of timidity (of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear), but [He has given us a spirit] of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control. Do not blush or be ashamed then, to testify to and for our Lord, nor of me, a prisoner for His sake, but [with me] take your share of the suffering [to which the preaching] of the Gospel [may expose you, and do it] in the power of God.” This is the Amplified version which expands on words and definitions. This is what I got from it: He brings calm and power not fear and I’m ready to take my share. Let’s do this!
I wanted to take a minute to answer a couple questions that I have been asked a lot recently. The first…How are you being so strong? I’ll answer it this way…
I have just arrived home from an encouraging and uplifting conference. I am the Coordinator for my local CBS (Community Bible Study) class. The regional CBS Leadership Conference was in Atlanta this weekend and so about 20 from our leadership team went to this conference. Over 500 representatives from classes in Georgia and South Carolina were there. CBS is an international ministry that God is doing some amazing things in. The mission of CBS is “To make disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ in our communities through caring, in-depth Bible study, available to all.” There are day classes, evening classes, children’s classes, co-ed classes, it really is available for all! I would encourage you if you haven’t picked up your Bible in awhile – don’t just pick it up and read it. Find and get involved in a CBS class. Click here to see the website and to find a class close to you. It’s $35 for the year and moms it’s $10 per child FOR THE YEAR! I mean that’s cheap! I pay $10 per hour for babysitting! And the children’s program is not just verse and cookie – it is amazing curriculum! If you are local to the Cumming area come join our class – contact me and I’ll tell you more.
I am excited to go to church on Sunday. Corporate worship always does something for my soul. It’s not just about sitting in rows, it’s about community, but there is something about sitting in rows. Listening to sound Biblical teaching. Worshiping. Jesus tells us to gather together and so I do with my family most every week. So I ask you have you gone to church recently? If not I would encourage to pick a place and visit this Sunday. Our church has partner churches across the country so if you want to find one I know i would recommend click here to find one. If you are just too uneasy to drive and walk through the doors of a church this Sunday then go here. Our church broadcasts their services (the whole thing including worship) every Sunday multiple times online.
So how does this answer the strong question i mentioned above? There are two things in my life, two places I make sure I’m going every week, CBS & church. I will never NOT be a part of CBS or a part of my church. I drank their kool-aid and have the mustache to show for it so-to-speak. CBS holds me accountable to read and study my Bible. Church holds me accountable to worship my Savior. These little deposits every week of my life over time have prepared me to be strong during this time of my life. There’s no other explanation to me. I could go into my personal journaling and prayer life, or the time I had with my mentor, or my accountability partner, or many other ‘christian’ things I do – but if you really narrow down and get to the foundation of my strength it’s in-depth Bible study and church.
The second most asked question I get is how is Mark doing? i wanted to copy his FaceBook post from earlier this week. Many of you are on FaceBook, but many of you are not. Here is his post:
 As followers of Jesus we are not exempt from the broken world we live in. Nor should we expect to be. In fact, we are told all throughout scripture not to avoid trouble and trial and uncertainty, but how to respond, where our hope is and what we are given to endure.
  As my wife and I face cancer it is really just a reminder, albeit a very clear one, that we are not home yet. That things are not as they should be. The trial of uncertainty raises a longing in your soul for all of Creation to be made whole again. Yet, in the waiting, you find a peace and mercy and grace and even joy that God alone can give. It is beyond worldly description.
 A wise friend of mine gave the analogy that you pour concrete while the sun is shining. Trying to do so while it’s raining will only lead to mush. The same is true with your faith. Have you resolved in your heart who Jesus is, now, while in the good times? Because if you wait to try and figure that out when the storms of life come you never will.
I am so very thankful that Ashley and I both are secure in the fact that we serve a historically risen Savior. He did what he said he would do. That provides a tremendous amount of hope. No matter what this broken world brings our way.
 Sorry for the soapbox. Had to get that out.
Been singing/praying this, this morning:
“And my soul will know Your love surrounds me
When my thoughts wage war
When night screams terror
There Your voice will roar
Come death or shadow
God I know Your light will meet me there
And my soul will know
When fear comes knocking
There You’ll be my guard
When day breeds trouble
There You’ll hold my heart
Come storm or battle
 God I know Your peace will meet me there
Oh, be still my heart
And my soul will ever know that You are God
And You heard my prayer”
-“Prince of Peace”, Hillsong United
So…I think he’s doing okay. He has his moments of course, but I have the best man standing next to me. I told him I wouldn’t be able to do this without him and he told me you aren’t supposed to. It has brought us closer and stronger as a couple already and we are only two weeks in. I’ve always said I married up, but he says the same about me. Guess that’s the way it’s supposed to be.
i’ll get off my soap box – most of you (if you lasted this long) – really only cared about the first paragraph. But you are going to always get a bit of my heart along with the medical details.
You can always leave comments below – your prayers and encouragement are so uplifting. I so appreciate all the sweet cards I’ve received and we are so humbled by the gofundme page contributions.
Continuing to choose to trust!
Ashley

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