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Words of Life

In The Fire

By Kasey Van Norman July 27, 2014 Words of Life

Journal Entry from February 15, 2012


I know that I haven’t been feeling 100 percent in the past week, but I wasn’t about to tell anyone just how “not great” I’ve been feeling. This type A person can’t bear the thought of not being able to make round four of chemo, scheduled for this coming Monday. I want to stay on schedule and get this over with as soon as possible. I’ve already pleaded my way into bumping up my next treatment by a whole week, so the thought of being unstable in any way and not being able to go through with it…well, it simply wasn’t an option for me. 

The doctor had other ideas. 

It turns out I have a fever…and the beginning signs of pneumonia in my lungs. I cry at the drop of a hat. And now my next chemo round is canceled until further notice. 

So I did what any obsessive-compulsive, bald-headed woman who is starting to look like a Chia Pet would do. I had a meltdown right there in the middle of the doctor’s office. 

That’s about as raw as a person can get. 

When I got home, I didn’t really know what to say to God. I didn’t necessarily feel angry or scared – just lost. Like a big, fat void had opened up in the middle of my heart. I want so desperately to know God’s purpose in all this chaos. 

But at the same time, there’s part of me that is ready to stop struggling. 

All right, God. I’m done fighting with you on this. I’m done being angry. Either you are going to take me out of the fire and heal my body of this cancer, or you are going to step into this fire with me and bring me to be with you. Either way, I am done trying to figure this thing out! 

At some point this week the lightbulb went on and the Lord brought to mind the exact scripture verse I needed. (With the state of my chemo brain, I know it had to be the Lord!) 

The Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. (Romans 8:26) 

Thank you, God, that you are not some impersonal force hovering in the air. You are a person – someone who has emotions and thinks about me and personally comes alongside me and stands with me when the flames are at my heels. Thank you that you help me when I’m weak, because I’m weaker than ever right now. And thank you for your glorious groans on my behalf. I don’t know what that sounds like, but I imagine that these groanings are too rich for words, too weighty for my ears to hear. I wouldn’t have chosen this fire, but I trust you are here with me in the midst of it.


Watch Kasey Van Norman this Monday on LIFE TODAY. This is an excerpt from Raw Faith: What Happens When God Picks a Fight by Kasey Van Norman. Copyright ©2014 by Kasey Van Norman. Published by Tyndale House Publishers. Used by permission.

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