Friday, November 11, 2011

Victory is not easy

This week has been a roller coaster for our family.

There are major changes going on at the girls' school and we're right in the middle of it all.  Brian has major things going on at work and he's at the center of it too.  That should be enough, but those are the minor parts of our week.

Monday morning, Brian's mom passed away.  She was diagnosed in January with uterine and lung cancer and by October, it had spread to her brain, spine, and lymph nodes.  She fought it every way she could, and dealt with the awful side effects of treatments.  On Monday she was healed completely.  It may not have been the way that some were hoping and praying, but it's healing nonetheless.  I've often heard the term that a person has "lost the battle with cancer".  I've decided I don't like it.  She didn't lose.  Ultimately, she won.  Cancer did not take her life.  It took her home. She gets to be with her Jesus.  When Brian was there a couple weeks ago, his mom said she was ready to go to heaven and be whole again and be with her sisters (and others that have gone before her).  But victory is not always easy.

Victory is not always characterized by jumping, shouting, and rejoicing.  Victory often has a downside.  I'm definitely not a glass-half-empty kind of girl (that's the pessimistic one, right?).  But I'm not a sunshine, rainbows, and unicorns kind of girl either.  I know the reality of life is that for every winner, there is usually a loser.  In a court case, there's always one side rejoicing, while the other mourns.  The Lord's gain in heaven is truly our loss on earth.

I've learned that victory always means change too.  Even when we were ecstatic about the girls' new school, it meant saying goodbye to old friends and learning to adapt to a new school's philosophy of learning.  Likewise, we have been praying for my dad to find a wonderful job after his department was laid off almost 3 years ago.  This week God answered our prayers.  He has a wonderful new job! We rejoice in the victory, but the job is over 4 hours away, so it means that they will be moving.  Major change from the 5 minutes it takes us to get to their house now.  Victory is not always easy.

What we cling to in weeks like this is that victory is ultimately the Lord's.  We are promised that throughout the Bible.  In Jeremiah 29:11, it says "For I know the plans I have for YOU,' says the Lord. 'Plans to prosper you and not to harm you.  Plans to give you a future and a hope." The Lord's plan is for us to be victorious.  In Revelation 17:14 it says, "These will make war with the Lamb, but He will triumph over them.  All those that accompany him shall share in the victory."

This week we cling to His promises, rejoice in victory, but we grieve for our loss.


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