Thursday, January 10, 2008

Encouraging Words for Cancer

My father-in-law was just diagnosed with cancer. Somehow seeing him this past Christmas helps me to believe it. He has lost weight and has a gray pallor over his face.

He has always been so healthy and strong, it's hard to see him this way.

But he is a courageous man, having lost his first wife, the mother of his eight children, on the first day of school of their last child in a car accident many years ago. A hard working farmer, he raised the children for several years by himself before he remarried.

He is in good hands. My brother-in-law, Tom is one of the leading research doctors on cancer at Mayo Clinic. Haven't they found a cure yet?

"Dad, Mom and I had a frank talk today and I am certain both understand the seriousness of this diagnosis. But, I have learned that it never is good to take hope away--so I think we should be positive with him, support him, pray for the best and prepare for the worst.

People can have remarkable responses--you just never know until you try. As our pastor said to us Sunday, "I am immortal until the day the Lord calls me home and my work on earth is done." Dad is a remarkable man. He is always positive--he never backs away from a challenge and his faith is so strong. He is not worried.

I did tell him that one gift cancer gives is that it gives him time to prepare. They do want to go to Florida and I have encouraged them to do so. I will find a good Oncologist for him in Sarasota. They want to be in the warm; they want to walk and fish and they will have friends around them there.

He'll probably go for all kinds of "natural" vitamins, colostrum, etc. as people start offering their advice. He's open to that kind of thing. Sometimes they work for a time.

Keep praying for them. Keep up the hope and positive attitudes. Let's give them lots of support and encouragement. That's the best we can do for them."

Hope, there is always hope.

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