Update Forty-Three

Well hello Friends!!!

It sure has been a while hasn’t it? It’s been a busy couple months with a roommate getting engaged (and planning a wedding in a month and a half!), college friends visiting from out of state, a trip to Montana to see relatives and meet many amazing people, adjusting to life back in Portland, relationships changing, speaking in public (yikes:), visiting churches, getting plugged back in to my home church, listening to the Lord on job direction… who knew that life without a job could be just as jam-packed (if not more), exhausting, exhilarating, and fulfilling as life with a job, and clear day to day direction. This is probably the biggest lesson of the last two months for me. I spent a lot of time worrying about “getting back into the groove” here in Portland and finding my niche again. I wanted so badly to be working again right away so I could  feel useful, independent, and unhindered by this whole “cancer” thing. Well, as I continue to learn over and over again… my own plans so often differ and are so far inferior to the perfect plan of our Lord.

God’s been making this so clear to me… “Christina, maybe I don’t want you to find your “groove”. Maybe I don’t want you to get a job right away and start relying on your own strength again. Maybe I just need you to trust me every day to fill your life up with MY purposes, maybe I need you to be that available. Maybe I need you to not find your worth in being useful, independent, and “unhindered by this whole cancer thing”,  andmaybe you need to make sure you’re not being prideful and love me enough to provide all the worth you need and trust me enough to lead you in the proper direction when the time is right.”

Woo! Big lesson for me. I have realized that my craving to be comfortable and find my niche is actually quite selfish and it also makes me a bit boring. Instead of fighting tooth and nail to get locked into some questionless routine, why don’t I embrace this time where God seems to be intentionally keeping me on my toes, and bringing in a constant flow of life changes….why didn’t I get this before…. HE DOESN’T WANT ME TO GET COMFORTABLE! Does he want to give me peace, rest, joy, and fulfillment? Absolutely! But HE wants to be the one to give me those, he doesn’t want me to fool myself into thinking I achieved those on my own through my own doing. I guess he knows me better than I know myself… shoot dang;) Oh how often do we think that life isn’t fair or right until we’ve gotten comfortable. Comfortableness can look like many things… health, being pain free, financial security, relational security, marriage, career desires, contentment, knowing where life is headed, long life, approval of others, the well-being of our friends/family… I’m sure we could all come up with lists. Aren’t these the things that we so often strive for?  Aren’t these the things that we get so mad at God about when they don’t happen? They aren’t bad things, but they are NOT God’s priorities. And when they stop becoming blessings and start becoming expectations… that’s when they become harmful, and we become idolatrous. Life is unfair unless we live a long life, life is unfair if we have to live with pain, life is unfair if we don’t have enough money, life is unfair if I’m not married… or I am married and it’s not what I want it to be, life is unfair if I’m not happy….

Playing the unfair game, just isn’t worth it. If anyone deserved to play the unfair game, it was Jesus… and he didn’t. He lived wildly, adventurously, and obediently as he walked on this earth… never surrendering getting sidetracked by mistreatment, unfairness, or the desire to be comfortable. Can you imagine if Jesus came to earth and just wanted to be comfortable.  What all he wanted to do was hunker down and make money, have fun friends, go on neat little trips. Did Jesus ever get angry because life was unfair and uncomfortable? No way! He knew what his purpose was and obedience to the Father was his only concern. That’s how I want to be… like Jesus. Go figure:) He’s awesome like that. I want to be dead set on my one and only goal in this life, to obediently and joyfully bring glory to my Father. Nothing else matters. If I need to live uncomfortably the rest of my life to do that, so be it. My life is not about me. I’m learning this lesson over and over again… always in a different context… but it’s always the same… this life… IS NOT ABOUT ME.

On to other things… I”M GETTING HAIR BACK! New hair from shiny bald spots that they had told me to give up on!  I have a shrinking bald spot a little over my right ear and that’s pretty much the only thing left! Yes! Thank you thank you thank you for all the prayers for my precious silly little hair follicles. Jesus raised people from the dead… It’s been made pretty clear that raising hair follicles from the dead aren’t a problem for him either:) I will continue to keep you updated on our little friends.

For those of you who are wondering and were so generous to donate money for me to get a wig… I did get one. I got the one labeled “sleek”… I’m told the wig looks better in person than it does in that picture, but I will try to post a few recent pictures so you get the idea. It took a while to get used to wearing it… I like to keep things pretty simple and I hate not feeling “like me”… so wearing it out in public a few times, without anyone screaming or staring, or yelling “Big Fakie!”, upped my confidence a little bit. It’s most definitely something I can’t take too seriously anymore and has just become a fun alternative to punky/baldy short hair and hats.  It is very nice not having to wear hats with dresses anymore;) And Jillian (yes they have names) is a new fun friend.

I turned 26 yesterday had a great time. Half the day in Port Angeles and half the day in Portland… very fun. I had a lot of time to reflect on year 25 of my life and realized wow, I am a blessed blessed girl. SO much has happened. I would have never ever expected last year at this time to see myself sitting at a computer, post brain surgery, post radiation, with choppy almost nothing hair… writing on a website about my experience to thousands of people. And that’s just stuff before September! Life is so unpredictable. It’s supposed to be that way. We don’t know what’s coming tomorrow for a reason. Our fragile minds couldn’t handle it. There is such a beauty in surrendering each new day to the Lord. How refreshing – all we need to concentrate on is the moment we live in today. I am a different person than I was a year ago, and that is very exciting to me. I want to keep growing. I want the Lord to be able to continually mold and use me. If my weakness helps him do that I’m glad this year gave him lots of opportunities.I wouldn’t trade year 25 for anything.

God Bless!