Growing in Grace

Last year on my birthday, the Lord promised to pour out great blessings upon my life, blessings that would astound me and be lasting.  My birthday is September.  Four months went by.  Not too much out of the ordinary happened.

In December, I saw my mother for what would be the last time on earth (that actually is extraordinary)…enjoyed a visit with my daughter and grandsons (that is an extraordinary gift as well) and enjoyed Christmas at home.  Bruce went to Japan on business, and I had an inkling of something not being quite right.

When he came home, his blood test results were waiting for him.  His PSA was 32.5.  Little Shadow tears his second knee ligament.  Doctor sends Bruce for biopsy.  We wait.  In the middle of the night, the telephone rings.  It is Bruce’s daughter telling him her brother had killed himself.  We stay up the rest of the night in shock.  Several hours later Bruce is informed his biopsy tested positive for cancer.

Talk about the wind knocked out of our sails! (Isn’t there a song out there: Jesus, be the wind in our sail, be the fire in our hearts, Jesus be the center?)  So maybe our sails are just catching wind and we need to learn whether to tack, run or beat with the wind….something I learned when I took sailing lessons just before my fifteenth birthday.

We travel to be with family.  A week of incredible stress and weariness.  I do a radio interview with Shane Davis from Anchored in Christ Ministries – I am still in shock and yet people are saved and set free through the message!  Any one of the five dogs present in the house could start barking at any time and I know there are ears pressed against the door, too impatient to wait and listen to the whole broadcast later!

The next six months, consumed with doctors, decisions and determination to walk worthy of our calling, a son and daughter of the King to whom all the promises of God belong.  We sense immediately that what we speak will determine the course of the cancer.  What our mouths speak will bring forth fruit, either death or life.  There is no in-between.  Our hearts must be fixed and steadfast upon the Word of God.

We choose to believe the Word of God.  I choose to believe in the God of Hope who has plans for our future that are good! I decide to take a hard route and every time Bruce said anything negative, I spoke the opposite and spoke the promise of God.  I even did that in a Doctor’s office when he was telling us all the stats.  The negativity in the air was thick and I couldn’t stand it.  I spoke up and said, “But, there is a 70% chance that will NOT happen and that percentage is much higher so we will go with that.”   I assure you the atmosphere in the room changed!  It really did!

It was that night, in the wee hours when the Lord spoke to me and reminded me of Namaan, the one who didn’t want to wash in the Jordan. Like Bruce, who didn’t want radiation, he wanted something different, something he thought would be better.  In the end, Namaan obeyed the word of the prophet, washed in the Jordan and came up healed.

It was that night; I felt the birthing of a bubble of joy.  The joy is a gift from my Father.  I am in His Keep and He is protecting, defending and guarding me.

It seems strange to me to acknowledge that I have a deep sense of joy, unlike any other time in my life when my beloved husband has been diagnosed with prostate cancer.  He has been diagnosed with it, but we are not receiving that diagnosis.

We are not welcoming it into our household, we are not opening the door wide and saying, “make yourself at home, do whatever you like”.  We have said “no” because the Lord said we have dominion on this earth and the Name of Jesus is above every other name.  Jesus said we could speak to the mountain, therefore; we are speaking to that mountain of cancer and telling it to die.  Sounds radical but I would rather be radical than lukewarm and half-hearted.

I would rather choose radical obedience and live in the fullness of God.  I want to embrace this trial and conquer it by entering into what God has already done for us at the Cross.

LOVE, JOY, PEACE belong to me in greater measure.

 LOVE, JOY, PEACE belong to me in great measure.           

I am growing in grace, growing in the knowing of my God. 

Love, joy and peace have risen in my spirit; they stand as markers I can see very clearly with the eyes of my heart. 

Love came first.  Deeper love grew.  In the middle of the unthinkable, joy is present.  Joy has put a smile on my lips, a song in my heart and laughter comes easily.  Joy sings beautiful songs of praise to me in the night and I wake up happy!  Happy!  Peace floods my soul.  The days of racing adrenaline and feelings of panic and inability to think have been washed away by peace that passes all of my ability to understand.

 God is using circumstances to grow a beautiful garden of His graces within my heart.  I am learning to live with fluidity, to flow in the direction of God. To flow into God Himself. 

We are staying the course, walking steadily on the road revealed by God.  We are blessed as we follow His direction, doing our very best to find Him.  Psalm 119:1

We embrace the pain for the promise of beauty.

With you in His palm,


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  1. marygems says

    I stand in agreement with you dear Jeannie- YOU are in His Keep and He is protecting, defending and guarding you.
    Growing in grace is certainly something born out of such fiery trials
    I will pray for you both that THIS HAS COME TO PASS AND NOT TO STAY.

    “Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21 NIV


  2. Christena & Wally Whitehead says

    Blessings will continue to keep you in our prayers love ya both give Bruce our thoughts also.

  3. Achama says

    Dear Jeannie, have I told you how much I love and appreciate you?I really do.. As I was praying this morning I thought of you and a word sprang to my mind ‘HOPE’. There is hope in and for you because you wait for, trust and hope in the Lord. You will bless others in your hope and teach them what it really means to have a hope that is based on intimacy and revelation.

    I will continue to pray for you both xxx

  4. Patty Christison. says

    Hi Jeannie-so thankful that you are now experiencing peace in the midst of all you have gone and are going through. You were on my heart to pray for very often. It’s different now-I feel a peace about your situation too. In my heart I feel that all will go well for you and Bruce and that the radiation will be a great success!
    With love and prayers,

  5. Pam M. says

    Jeannie — oh my word…such a timely message. So necessary. Choosing to take the hard route. That one got to me the most. I have some situations coming up that will require taking the hard route, a route I’ve been happy to avoid in my battles with depression lately. But you’ve shared such encouragement here, helping to draw me out of my deep dark pit. I know I MUST choose the hard route. I know I NEED to choose radical obedience. I would love to birth my own bubble of joy. Thank you for this awesome post, Jeannie.

  6. Amy King says

    Beautiful! I will be reading this one over and over. Love you, and love what mighty ways God reveals Himself to you. Back in Texas tonight…feeling kinda low. I am going to push through with the words of Christ out loud! Claiming BOLD things for Jesus to do through both of our families! Love you!

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