Monday, January 9, 2012

The Focus In The Fight

"The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still." Exodus 14:14

Precious Friends,

I feel as though it has been so long since I wrote you last. I hope your holidays were richly blessed. Ours were wonderful. God is so good in allowing us that sweet time in between surgery and chemotherapy to rejuvenate and celebrate who He is and all that He has done in our lives. It was so wonderful to have a little break from all this cancer stuff! One thing that I treasure about cancer is that it helps my heart to find joy in the simple things. Things that I would have never even thought about doing before, now I feel blessed every single time I get to do them. For example, when McKinley wakes up unexpectedly at night, I can't wait to go into her room, reach into her crib and just hold her. Oh, how I love to hold my sweet little girl. About 2 weeks ago, I was cleared to lift McKinley. Praise God! Certain lifting that I wasn't supposed to be able to do for 6 months post-surgery, I can do now! How great is God! I know He is answering the prayers of His beloved. Thank you for praying.

Years ago, I read a wonderful book called Wild At Heart, that completely changed my picture of God and what He wants for my life. I had long thought of God as a meek shepherd: all loving and all forgiving, but not really someone I would want to go to battle with; more like someone I would want to go to coffee with. But as I have fallen more in love with Christ and have gotten to really know Him, God has revealed to me that although He is our all loving, all forgiving, sweet Shepherd, He is also the mightiest, most courageous Warrior in all the universe. Psalm 24:8 NIV - Who is this King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, the LORD mighty in battle. There is absolutely nothing that he can't conquer and that one day, when Christ returns, that He won't completely conquer. So although, there have been many days since my diagnosis that I just needed the loving, compassionate arms of my heavenly Dad to hold me, today, more than ever, I need my Warrior to fight for me. I find so much peace in knowing that since Jesus conquered Death and healed his beloved from the depravity of sin, I know, with full confidence that He can and will conquer cancer and heal me.  One of my favorite sayings is 'Faith is not just believing that God can, but it is knowing that He will.' Tomorrow (Tuesday, January 10th) at 10:30am, I start chemotherapy. I will have labs run and will see Dr. O'Shaugnessy, but my actual infusion will last about two and half hours. So, for two and a half hours, I will just sit there as the medicinal poison flows through my veins and seeks to kill my cancer cells. How awesome then that God promises us: "The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still" Exodus 14:14. For perhaps the first time ever in my life, God is not even allowing me to step foot on the battle ground. He just strongly reassures me, "Randi, just be still, I will fight for you, this battle is mine." Although, if you know me, you know that I love to be part of everything, I hate to miss a thing. I want to be on the front lines (more like in the front row) of everything. Its hard and humbling to be taken out of the game. I often think that God just needs a little of my help to accomplish His purpose. Ha! The King of the Universe doesn't need me to help Him at all, He has it all under His perfect control. He just asks us to hand over the reigns, to give Him the steering wheel of our life. That is the ultimate beauty of the gospel; that Jesus died for us and all He ever asks is for us to give our broken, sinful lives to Him. Oh, how I love that truth! So although, I desperately want to actively fight this cancer battle, I am so thankful that God loves me so much that He will fight this one for me. 2 Chronicles 20:15b NIV - This is what the LORD says to you: 'Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God's. I know the victory is already won, so today, tomorrow and every day for the next 6 months, may my heart just "Be still and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10 Please pray that I would find a perfect peace in letting God fight this battle for me; and that in my stillness, I would fall more in love with my Mighty Warrior.

Although I find immense comfort in the strength of my Savior, there are many moments where I allow the fear of what is to come to grip my every thought.  I often forget that most people have never seen someone they love go through cancer treatment. (If that is you- awesome!) Unfortunately, I feel like I've seen too many. So, I have a pretty good idea of what is to come and the nasty side effects of chemotherapy as well as Lupron. When I dwell on these things, especially since one of my chemotherapy drugs is nicknamed the "Red Devil," I become so scared and anxious. I don't want to be sick and exhausted and irritable, and I desperately do not want to lose my hair. I'm scared to not look or feel like myself. Matt often has reminded me that chemotherapy may change my body for awhile, but it cannot change my heart. Oh, how thankful I am for that. Last night, as Matt and I were spending some sweet time reading God's Word, we read this verse: "But seek First His kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself." Matthew 6:33-34 Please pray that this would be my heart, that I would seek the Lord and His glory before anything else, and that I would be so focused on Him that I wouldn't worry about tomorrow, or any of the tomorrows to come. Matt's mom has wisely told me so many times that God doesn't promise us the grace for the 'what ifs' only for the 'what ares.' I know with all my heart, that God's grace is sufficient for every single thing that is to come and that His power will be made perfect in my weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). With that being true, I have nothing to fear. Anything and everything I am about to face, He will be right there with me, fighting the battle for me. I've heard it reported that it says in the Bible 'to not be afraid' some 365 times. Can you believe that! How perfect and sovereign God is, that He gave us a reminder every single day of the year that we have nothing to fear with Him. So Lord, "When I am afraid, I will trust in you." Psalm 56:3 Please pray that every moment that I start to fear, that I will trust completely in Him.

Many people have asked me why I still have to go through chemotherapy, even though they took out all my breast tissue and all the visible cancer during surgery. It has been explained to me that it takes at least 1 million cancer cells to decide to land in the exact same spot, before any medical test can detect them. So although, during surgery, they did get all the cancer in my breast tissue, there is a chance that those silly cancer cells are still floating all around my body, and 1 million of them haven't decided to land in the same spot yet. So, chemotherapy drugs are like mass destruction agents. We don't know where in my body the cancer cells could still be lurking, so the chemotherapy drugs seek to kill all rapidly dividing cells. The hard thing about chemotherapy is that it doesn't just kill cancer cells, in the process, it kills many healthy cells too. That is where all the side effects come from the nausea, fatigue, weak immune system, hair loss, etc... Dr. O said that I will experience the worst of the side effects for the 3-5 days following chemotherapy. So that would be Wednesday, Thursday and Friday of this week. I will then have a 'medium' week and then a 'good' week, before I have chemotherapy again on January 31st. We don't know exactly what this all will look like for me, but we are praying for miraculous healing; that I wouldn't experience any of these icky side effects. But we are also praying that if I do, that I would rest in the fact that God's grace is sufficient for my every weakness, and that through my weakness, His strength would be so evident. Please pray that I would have a gentle and quiet spirit, even when I feel irritable and out of control. Although there is great uncertainty in how I may feel, there is greater certainty in who my God is and the beautiful plans that He has for me. I don't know how I could do this without Him.

Sweet friends, I feel as though I have asked you to pray for so much.  As Matt and I have mentioned before, we believe that there is no greater blessing that you could give us than to go before the King of all the universe on our behalf.  Your prayers mean more than I could ever express.  I wish I could be praying for you specifically, but know that I am faithfully praying that you will allow God to fight whatever battle you are facing for you; that you would find still moments just to be with Him even in the busyness of life; and that you would not fear anything that tomorrow has to bring. Is there a battle that you are trying to fight in your own strength? As I have mentioned before, you may have heard of the Loving Lamb, but I hope today that you get to know the Mighty Warrior who desperately wants to fight on your behalf. I love you and am so thankful for you everyday.

Joyfully in HIM~


1 Samuel 17:47 NIV - All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the LORD saves; for the battle is the LORD's..."


  1. Hi Sweet Randi,
    I just want to let you know that the Square One team moms are praying for you today. Praying for strength, wellness, energy, and comfort. Praying that all your family and friends will be like Caleb and Aaron that held up Moses' hands when he was too tired to do so himself.
    Please let me know if you have a care calendar set up. Several of the team have asked me to find out.

  2. Randi---So many people around Allen are asking about you and praying for you---AND you are all the topic now through Feb 14 ---with Love week--and you being the focus of that . My neighbor said; " I don't really need 4 t-shirts, but that is at least how many I am going to order! :)
    I know you have probably read. "One Thousand Gifts"--but I am in the thick of it right now. I only read about 2 pages a day. Quietly/ strongly life Changing. YOU are So LOVED with an army of praying Friends/ strangers/ Do you hear the roar ? as the prayers are going up from the Multitude?

    Love, Hugs, Respect, Awe of you and Matt, Peggy Tikson for the Tikson gang