It's been a week since I've written anything. Honestly, I haven't much felt like it. The cumulative effects of the chemo seemed to come crashing down and at least three days in the past week I haven't even gotten dressed. We did go out last Saturday, the day after treatment, for a trip to the grocery, I taught a Sunday School class the next day and we joined Tommy, Liz and family for the Super Bowl. We had a couple of really cold days when the temperatures didn't get over thirty five degrees so it was easy to stay inside. My fingers have been sore, my feet are dry and peeling, some toenails are lifting and I have felt like a truck ran over me. Of course, when I go back and read about the drug I'm taking, I realize there's a reason I have low grade temp and am exhausted. Nobody says I have to like it though!
Last night we went to Tommy and Liz's for supper and a visit. Just being there, spending time with them and especially the two youngest girls was food for the soul. At one time there were so many people talking at one time that I wasn't sure of the conversation I was having. Tommy made a delicious dish of grilled tilapia served over saffron rice and covered with a black bean and tomato concoction. It was great! Today the three older children came to help clean up the leaves in our yard. They filled five big plastic bags and there are at least three times that many more on the ground. Maybe they can attack it again next weekend.
I have been reading two books along with the study I'm doing in Mark: Keep in Step with the Spirit by J.I. Packer and Life with God by Richard Foster. The first is a really in depth study of the Holy Spirit and the second is designed to teach the reader to be transformed by his/her reading of the Scripture. Some of its material might also be found in Celebration of Discipline, probably Foster's most familiar work and actually might be good to read before reading Celebration. The chapter on lectio devina is one of the best teachings on this discipline I have seen and I have been able to break it down into simple steps that I can remember without having to have a complete set of instructions in front of me. One day this week I chose Psalm 100 as the passage on which I would dwell. Present in my mind since then has been the phrase from the NIV that says: and we are his (vs. 3). The implications of what it means to belong to God are endless and have provoked unending praise and thanksgiving.
Being sidelined by fatigue reminds me of the seriousness of the illnesses we both face and being reminded often brings questions about the future. In my study tonight for Mark tomorrow I came across this statement made by the professor who taught my class called "A Spiritual Theology of the Book of Mark." He said: Don't let fear blind you to the power and faithfulness of God. I wrote his quote down in my journal right next to the Psalm 100:3 phrase, we are his. Together, that is food--no, a banquet--for thought!