Saturday, January 29, 2011

Dear Caring and Steadfast Friends,

My final pre-surgical appointment was Friday morning. I never realized how much there was to discuss with this type of procedure. The surgery (double mastectomy with immediate reconstruction) is set for next Thursday, the 3rd, at Harrisburg Hospital. At this point, the plan is that I'll only be there for 23hr.

Some specific prayer requests are as follows:

  • That God Himself would guide both surgeons' hands 
  • That the lymph nodes removed for the sentinel biopsy are free from metastasis.

  • That the epidural catheter would be placed without difficulty and with no damage the tissue (soft or otherwise) in my spinal column

  • That I would not experience post anesthesia nausea and vomiting

  • No infection, in Jesus' name!

  • The tissue flap needs a good blood flow so it doesn't die. There is a 30% chance of this occurring. This procedure is rather new for our country, but I am willing to try it.

  • That the pain would be manageable without heavy duty drugs

  • That I would have the strength and courage to push through the pain in order to perform all necessary post-operative exercises

  • That I would continue in the Peace that surpasses all understanding, bringing Light to those around me.

  • Financial peace for Strongman, as I will not be able to work for ~ 4 weeks. I only have 40 hours of paid time off.

  • That my sons would continue to take all of this one step at a time and that they would remain in Peace.

Thank all of you for the time you take on my behalf to lay these requests before the God's throne. The peace I have been experiencing has been supernatural. The Love you have shown me through many and varied ways has touched my soul in ways I cannot express. The only thing I can say is "thank you." You all are cherished by me, but better than that perfectly cherished by God!!!

I thank my men (Strongman, Consecrated and Fire) for all the love, support, and protection they show me continually. I love you guys so much!!!!

May what you have poured out for me come back to you tenfold, in the name of Jesus!!

Which Much Love and Thankfulness,

Bellann :)

‎"Out of the part assigned to the Judahites was the inheritance of the tribe of Simeon, for the portion of the tribe of Judah was too large for them." Joshua 18:9a

The tribe of Judah, which means praise, was given an inheritance by the Lord that was too large for them. They were overflowing with praise, and their brother tribe, Simeon, gained their portion from within the boundaries of Judah. Wouldn't it be awesome if our lives were so full of praise that our brothers' (or sisters') praise was apportioned from our overflow?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Far East Movement - Rocketeer Cover: By iBeJulio

Music fills my house when iBeJulio,
Consecrated and Fire get together. 

God has doled out amazing musical talent to you!

All music was sang, played,
filmed and recorded by these awesome young men,
let's not forget Jordan.

See the behind the scenes videos on 1aDayMyles:  
audio and video.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Removal of the Mountain-The Richest Woman in the World

Hello, Cherished Ones,

I saw the plastic surgeon this morning, and have decided to proceed with the surgery on February 3rd. I will, at any time until then, change the plan if God directs it.

I want to remind you all again, that if you feel the Lord placing anything on your heart in regards to this situation, please share it with me. You never know when you might be the one to confirm something the Lord has already spoken to my heart.

I cannot thank you all enough for your support through prayers, calls, cards, words, and my personal favorite, hugs and kisses. :)

On Sunday morning my Facebook status was, "I'm the richest woman in the world." This trial has been one of revelation for me, so much so, that I don't even see it as a "trial." Jesus has taken what the evil one has meant for destruction and has used it to reignite my fiery passion for people and my desire to see them love Jesus with all of their hearts!!! My situation has given me numerous opportunities to speak of the Awesome God I Love!!!

While on the way to church on Sunday morning, I heard the "Revelation Song" on the radio, and thought to myself how much I wanted to sing that song in worship again. Guess what song I heard the worship team practicing as I walked into CCC? You guessed it, the "Revelation Song." Anyone who saw me as I walked into the building would have seen the hugest smile on my face. My soul is so rich with blessings from my Jesus, that I am overflowing!!!

Thank you all for holding me up in prayer. It is working!!!

With Much Love...

Beautiful Grace, aka, The Richest Woman in the World!!!

Ephesians 3:7-9 (Amplified Bible)

Of this [Gospel] I was made a minister according to the gift of God's free grace (undeserved favor) which was bestowed on me by the exercise (the working in all its effectiveness) of His power.

To me, though I am the very least of all the saints (God's consecrated people), this grace (favor, privilege) was granted and graciously entrusted: to proclaim to the Gentiles the unending (boundless, fathomless, incalculable, and exhaustless) riches of Christ [wealth which no human being could have searched out],

Also to enlighten all men and make plain to them what is the plan [regarding the Gentiles and providing for the salvation of all men] of the mystery kept hidden through the ages and concealed until now in [the mind of] God Who created all things by Christ Jesus.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Removal of the Mountain- Hearing God's Voice

Peace, Sweet Peace!  Experiencing Peace in the midst of a diagnosis of breast cancer seems unrealistic, but possible.  My soul has been at Peace during the process of sorting through mountains of information regarding the treatment options.  Thank You, Jesus!!!  Since my natural personality tends to worry, I can only say that the Peace I am experiencing is miraculous!

The treatment options laid out before me include a lumpectomy followed by radiotherapy (5 days a week for 5 weeks) combined with Tamoxifen (5 years). 

While reading about the common and not so common side effects of the Tamoxifen, I broke down; immediately, I turned away from man's knowledge and cried out to God for Him.  I was not about to lose the awesome Peace I had been experiencing.

The surgeon also proposed another option of double mastectomy, thus eliminating the need for follow up radiotherapy and Tamoxifen.

At this point, the lumpectomy that had been scheduled  is canceled, and I am awaiting an appointment with the plastic surgeon. I want to know all of my options before proceeding!  The appointment is January 24th, if you want to pray.  :)

Breast cancer has not been the only serious diagnosis I have been given.  Twenty-three years ago, I was diagnosed with an arteriovenous malformation  (similar to an aneurysm) located in my left frontal cortex (left front portion of my brain). 

I had been experiencing severe headaches due to the pressure the AVM was placing on the surrounding brain tissue, and it had started to leak, which caused a seizure.

As penned in the post, "What Then is Love?" grim predictions were given...if I chose not to have surgery, “don’t lift more than five pounds, don’t get constipated, don’t sneeze or cough,” the neurosurgeon advised. In addition, the unthinkable, “You will not be able to have children, and even with these precautions, the AVM could possibly rupture anyway causing coma or death. If you choose to have the surgery, there will be six months, at least, of slurred speech, a very high possibility of short-term memory loss, possibly long-term memory loss, right-sided weakness, and if it went sour... coma or death,” the surgeon reported.

Not having a clue what to do, I was extremely upset!!  I had never experienced fear to that intensity previously.  After receiving the report of the ct scan at work, I was so scared that I needed to leave mid shift. 

I had heard of people experiencing miraculous healing and believed that God sometimes chooses to heal in that way, but I was desperate to hear God, let Him tell me what to do, how to proceed.  I was sitting on my bedroom floor with the TV turned to the 700 Club.  As the ticker tape like prayer line number scrolled across the bottom of the screen, I decided to call for prayer.

The faith-filled man I spoke with declared miraculous healing, "God will heal you without surgery."  I whole-heartedly believed that this was God's answer to my dilemma, but God's plan took a different path.

As I listened to the prayer warrior, from behind me I felt a cool breeze on my back.  I then felt (not seen, but felt) a hand placed between my ear and the phone's receiver, muffling the man's voice.  In my other ear, I heard another voice loud and clear, "Bellann, have the surgery.  I will take care of you."  I thanked the man for praying and then hung up the phone.

I thought, I think I just heard the voice of God.  The next thing I realized was that ALL of the fear I had been experiencing was totally gone.  I was experiencing the peace that surpasses all understanding.  The God of the universe had just audibly directed my path!!!

And God did take care of me!!!  I experienced none of the side effects predicted by the doctors!!!  I moved in such Peace that a fellow nursing student told me after my surgery that she thought I had been in denial of the gravity of the situation.  :)

I am retelling this story to you now, because I want to make it perfectly clear.  God will direct my path now as He did twenty-three years ago!

Lord, You know all things, beginning and end. You have promised to direct my paths, because I recognize and acknowledge Your sovereignty!!!  Cancer is like a cold to You (taken from Pastor Dave Hess).  You are the One I trust.  Thank You for the knowledge You pour out through man, but ultimately, my trust remains firm in You!!!  AMEN!!!

My ears are open...

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Mountain Revealed

My previous post, Mountain in the Path, describes various reactions to an obstacle placed in one's pathway.  This post was inspired by the personal mountain I am currently dealing with...its name, breast cancer.

My yearly routine mammogram revealed microcalcifications in my right breast.  Microcalcifications are formed when cells are dividing rapidly and dying quickly.  Cancer was not seen on the mammogram, just its effects.

A stereotactic biopsy was recommended and performed the Wednesday before Christmas.  Undergoing a biopsy at a different site on the same breast five years ago, did not prepare me for this unique procedure.  Although, uncomfortable (I developed a cramp in one of my intercostal muscles during the procedure), the technology was fascinating, and I thank God for the knowledge He has given man!

While driving to work on Christmas afternoon, I asked the Lord what He was going to do in 2011.  Clearly, His Spirit replied...

"Do not trust in the chariots and horses of men.  Trust in Me."
 from Psalm 20:7

Immediately, I began pondering His statement and attempted to apply it to any current situations, which gave me a choice to either trust man or trust Him.  I knew God was speaking, but was not certain how His word applied to me.

The Monday after Christmas, my husband and I were visiting my Momma who was hospitalized for left leg cellulitis (this has been recurring for many years.  Please pray!)  My cousin, who I don't see very often was also visiting my Mom.  She went on to list her numerous surgeries, the latest of which was a double mastectomy.  Can anyone say, "Foreshadowing?"

My husband and I decided to eat out for dinner, and eat somewhere fun, so we decided to eat at a local hibachi grill.  My phone rang as the chef was juggled knives and threw eggs, slicing them in midair.  My surgeon's voice cut through the moment with the surreal statement, "The biopsy showed cancer."

My immediate thought was not, she's saying I have cancer; it was, my Christian brothers and sisters will think I have sinned in some way.  For a little while, I only asked for prayer from those I could trust, but I have changed my mind.  Satan's strategy is to keep us alone, without the support of the body of Christ.  I want to buck the evil one, therefore, I am now publicly asking for prayer.

My prayer requests would be the following...

****that I would remain in Peace, the peace that surpasses all understanding.

****that I would hear the Lord clearly as to what He wants me to proceed. He is the One I trust. I will not trust in the chariots and horses of man!

****that I would be able to minister to my family and fulfill my responsibilities at work in a way that would glorify God.

****that the testimony I will have to share would draw those who hear to the Great Healer.

****that you would share with me what you feel the Lord is saying, any direction He would have for me.

I will continue to keep you updated as time allows.  In the meantime, I would appreciate any prayers you offer on my behalf.

With Much Love...
Beautiful Grace  :)

"Some trust in and boast of chariots and some of horses,
but we will trust in and boast of the name of the Lord our God."

Psalm 20:7 (Amplified Bible)