I've been struggling the last few days. Battling cancer is not what I had hoped to be doing this year. Like a petulant child, I've been stomping my feet, declaring how unfair the situation is, feeling sorry for myself. Asking God, 'where is my reward?'
My brother called me the other night, and he told me about a recent tantrum that my niece had thrown… and it left me feeling a little convicted about the spiritual tantrum I've been throwing lately.
Conveniently, when I opened up my Bible, I was in Genesis 27, the story of Jacob stealing Isaac's blessing from Esau. In the story, Esau and Jacob are twin sons of Isaac, with Esau being just minutes older. Esau and Jacob have butted heads from the beginning, and earlier we read that Esau traded his birthright to Jacob for a bowl of soup (likely not believing that the transaction would be valid - the birthright is granted along with a blessing to activate it. Without a blessing, no birthright is traded). In chapter 27, Esau learns that Jacob has received their father's blessing by pretending to be Esau, and he is understandably angry. So much so that he threatens to kill Jacob shortly after.
Esau first brings his case to his father, "... He has cheated me twice now, he first took my birthright and now has taken my blessing. Haven't you saved a blessing for me?" (Genesis 27:36)
How presumptuous?? Esau was flippant with his birthright, and then expects his father to have reserved a blessing for him anyways (…while being deceived by Jacob). He's throwing a tantrum, albeit an understandable one.
It made me take a hard look where I've been careless with MY "birthright"... The times where I had an opportunity to share my testimony with hospital staff, and chose not to… the times where I felt more gratified by the number of likes on a Facebook post than what God was doing in my heart… the way I have doubted God's goodness as I mourned my plans for this year. All the while asking, "Haven't you saved a blessing for me?"
Oof. That hurts.
I firmly believe that God brought this disease into our lives to transform our hearts, to encourage those around us, to grow our faith, and to glorify Him in the process. That fact does not change with the circumstances, the good news or the bad, the joy or the sorrow.
So today… I'm resting in the miracle. The fact that we found the cancer early. The fact that there are so many treatments available. And the fact that I have a heavenly Father who is patient with me through my tantrums, faithful to provide the right message at the right time, and grants me grace that I absolutely do not deserve, all because He is just that good.