Cancer Survivor

Roadblocks and Detours

Road Blocks

Most people know me as a “full speed ahead” personality. I’ve even earned the nick-name “Heat Seeking Missle” when assigned to a task or project. It’s not uncommon for me to ask others if they want my involvement because I’m either engaged or disengaged. You don’t want to stir the A-type unnecessarily. Naturally, the slower pace of recovery and treatment goes against my robust nature. I attribute most of my weepy days as chaffing against my inner stirring. This little lamb struggles when “He makes me to lie down in green pastures” (Psalm 23:2).

Detours and closed doors really frustrate me. I don’t like to be thrown off course. Yesterday, at my fourth chemo session I hit a “slow down dangerous curves ahead” sign. First of all, all my blood work looks fantastic. The Dr. can’t believe how healthy and strong my numbers look. However, I am having some symptoms with my digestive track—urgency and frequency. Let’s just say I have to be acutely aware of bathroom placement throughout my day. While doing a physical exam Dr. Ampuero detected something, larger than a walnut, growing outside my colon wall at the site of the anastomosis. This seems to be creating a narrowing of my colon which explains my symptoms. He ordered a CT scan. But I must wait two weeks as the chemo already compromises my vital organs and the contrast die from the scan would be too taxing. So I’m on a two week detour.

Let me tell you about woman who encountered a detour, Debbie Lascelles who was known by her friends as, “the Texas cream puff.” She knew all the current make-up techniques; could style her hair into the perfect “Texas-Do” and could paint her nails to match any outfit. But there were some things Debbie couldn’t do, like change a flat tire. She had adopted this philosophy of life: “Don’t learn to do something you don’t want to end up doing.” For instance, never ask your husband to teach you how to use the lawnmower unless someday you expect to be trimming the grass. I’ve been told Debbie wouldn’t even screw a new license plate onto her car. Instead, she asked an able-bodied maintenance man working on staff with her at the YWAM base in Tyler, Texas to do the job for her.

She was at the top of her class when graduating from nursing school and was voted the most likely to succeed. Everybody knew Debbie was destined for a prosperous career and would probably marry a doctor. But God interrupted her plans by calling her to the mission field, despite all her previous protests. At thirty-five years old, she and three other like-minded Christians joined Voice Of the Martyrs (VOM) on a mission trip to the Sudan. They were to bring much needed supplies: clothes, medicine, and books to a remote village in the middle of the steamy jungle. The team was also asked to teach their native brothers how to win their enemies to Jesus.

It was a sweltering hot day as they loaded the supply truck. The cream puff was melting. She poured herself into the seat next to another missionary dripping with sweat and fastened her seatbelt for the bumpy ride ahead. They knew that they must travel all day to make their destination before nightfall or they would be lost.

Halfway through the trip a tire blew, and their hearts deflated. The only way to change the tire in that heavy-laden truck was to empty its contents. When the team finally overcame their obstacle, too much time was lost. They’d never reach the village before dark. Disappointed, they decided to turn back.

Rumbling out of the afternoon sky came the sound of airplanes. Their escorts feared the worst, “Those are enemy bombers! Everyone hit the dirt.” Debbie the debutante was now sweaty, dirty, and scared. But to her amazement, the planes roared by without noticing the team or the truck. Like heat-seeking missiles, the bombers remained locked on their target: the very village Debbie had been headed for. The time of detonation? Just before dark. A flat tire had saved their lives.

For Debbie, when God said, “No” His loving hand had placed a roadblock in her path. Has God answered one of your prayers with a deafening, NO? Have you turned back from a desired destination because an obstacle impeded the path? Take time to reflect on the reasons why. Perhaps God was protecting you from a bad decision or attempting to lead you to greener grass. Be sure not to miss supernatural surprises in unexpected places—including the ones you’ve missed.

9 thoughts on “Roadblocks and Detours

  1. Lenya & Skip,You both are on my mind a lot & I'm praying continually for your healing, L-May. You look so beautiful & peaceful as always when I see you teach, and yet the things you're going through must be so hard. I have to ask the Lord, why…why you?…when you both give so much…and I don't know…no one does. But what I'm personally learning from you and what you're writing on this blog…well gee, is there another way to teach & learn the deep things of suffering & God's presence? I guess not, but I so wish there was. You're an amazing example to me.Love ya, Peg

  2. Hi Lenya…though we've moved further away than ever from your corner of the world, you are often on my mind. You exude grace! "He giveth more grace when the burdens grow greater…" I know you know the words, but I include them here as they are my prayer for you! Thank you for encouraging and blessing so many through your journal thoughts! (PS congrats on the flower in your desert in becoming a grandma!) Love, Helen & RossHe giveth more grace as our burdens grow greater,He sendeth more strength as our labors increase;To added afflictions He addeth His mercy,To multiplied trials He multiplies peace.When we have exhausted our store of endurance,When our strength has failed ere the day is half done,When we reach the end of our hoarded resourcesOur Father’s full giving is only begun.Fear not that thy need shall exceed His provision,Our God ever yearns His resources to share;Lean hard on the arm everlasting, availing;The Father both thee and thy load will upbear.His love has no limits, His grace has no measure,His power no boundary known unto men;For out of His infinite riches in JesusHe giveth, and giveth, and giveth again.

  3. Hey there missie…been praying for you. When my sister had chemo this week too, thought of you, and prayed several times. I remembered the time you didn't want the normal "effects" of it..prayed that too…I love your story. I love it. When Calvary sent the team to Ground Zero…a girl talk to me and my team partner telling us that on that morning, she had such a craving for a cranberry muffin she walked 10 blocks to get one. She missed the tower crash…SHE NEVER LIKED MUFFINS…God is sovereign!Thank you for that wonderful inspiring story! Love you, Susan


  5. Oh Lenya. I'm praying for you. I'm praying for a miracle this next 2 weeks.After Skip's message this weekend it's obvious you guys are the shiniest of gold. After all this time in the furnace, I know He's at work in your lives and in all of ours through each of you.<3

  6. Lenya, I'm praying and praying for you and Skip. I'm expecting great visible evidence of God's power and dominion over His world as we are convicted to grow deeper roots through our study this semester.I'm so sad about your son and daughter in law's loss of a precious one this week. I agree with Nicole that you and your family have been in the furnace now for awhile. But you're radiating beautiful purity of spirit through the heat. I trust what Skip preached in that God has His faithful hand on the thermostat.Much love.

  7. It always seems to Pour when it is raining, doesn't it? Lenya, we will be praying for you, The Lord has something wonderful ahead. Corey and myself have experienced some little Detours this past month. But one night before going to bed, I was a little panicky, and in the Still of the night, the Lord just said, "Be still and Trust me, I am working out the Puzzle pieces so its the best for you Cissie.He is up there Working his Magnificent plan for us and placing the puzzle together. Thank you for always sharing Lenya, I always look forward to your blog. We will be praying for you over these next weeks! Cissie

  8. I can't tell you anything you don't already know but, may I say I know the "streching" hurts. Breath deep and know that your heavenly Father loves you even more than your dear old dad and me! My thoughts and prayers are with you. Love Renee & Mike

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