I’ve been procrastinating the blog post about our prayer gathering last Sunday. I just don’t have the words it deserves to describe the beauty of it, the presence of God, the incredible generosity and outpouring of support. It left me speechless.
Over 100 dear family, friends and sweet clients came out to our house on Superbowl Sunday. Some sweet faces that I hadn’t seen in so many years, several who battled cancer as well, and some who I didn’t even get to hug and thank in person for coming… it was almost like our wedding day, everyone hugging and loving on us. They circled around Josh and I in the same spot where we celebrated at our wedding over 3 years ago. Little Eva was snoozing inside the house, no idea what was going on. Then, add to that the countless, hundreds, of people who let us know they were praying at the same time, from all over the city, state and country! It was so humbling to say the least.
[My grandmother brought this special prayer shawl from Israel to wrap over us.]
I asked Cindy and Lori to send what they shared at the prayer gathering, for me to keep, and to share with those that couldn’t be there in person. These two women are so gifted, with words and how they love on others, sacrificing their time to help so many they come across. I look up to both of them so very much.
Cindy is the beloved, sweet friend of our family who came to pray healing over my sister, Lindsey when she was pregnant with Halli, years ago. (I’ll get Lindsey to share this miracle story!) Then, like I shared in my posts about my diagnosis and the longest weekend ever, Cindy came to pray over me, with Mom, Josh and Lindsey present, just before my PET scan.
She opened up, gathering everyone around Josh and I. She asked everyone to form circles around us: our family, our best friends and then everyone.
// Pray for Hedge of Protection. Written by Germaine Copeland.
Father, in the name of Jesus, we lift up Shea to You and pray a hedge of protection around her. We think You, Father, that You are a wall of fire around about Shea and that You set Your angels round about her. We thank You, Father, that Shea dwells in the secret place of the Most High and abides under the shadow of the Almighty. We say of You, Lord, You are her refuge and fortress, in You will she trust. You cover Shea with Your feathers, and under Your wings shall she trust. Shea shall not be afraid of the terror by night or the arrow that flies by day. Only with her eyes will Shea behold and see the reward of the wicked. Because Shea has made You, Lord, her refuge and fortress, no evil shall befall her no accident will overtake her neither shall any plague or calamity come near her. For You give Your angels charge over Shea, to keep her in all Your ways.
Father, because You have set Your love upon Shea, therefore will You deliver her when she call upon You, and You will answer her. You will be with her in trouble and will satisfy her with a long life and show her Your salvation. Not a hair of her head shall perish. Amen
Scripture References: Ezekiel 22:30, Zechariah 2:5, Psalm 34:7, Psalm 91, Luke 21:18
Father, as we all stand in faith releasing into your hands all our worries and cares, for You are always thinking about us, and watching everything that concerns us, by grace we all are standing firm trusting You. We cast Shea burden on You, Lord releasing the weight of it, and your love will sustain her. You will never allow the righteous to be moved (slip or fall) In the Name of Jesus, we all our overcomes by the blood of the Lamb and by the Words of our testimony. Amen //
Then she opened up for anyone to pray… and my sweet momma spoke up, her voice cracking, but so strong and calm. I asked Mom to do a guest blog post soon, so maybe she can share what she said. :)
Lori followed… my God-filled, strong, generous friend who organized this most lovely gathering:
// Most of us like to script out our lives. We plan what we want to do, where we want to live, how we will vacation. We even plan how many children we want to have. I believe if most of us looked at our calendar for 2016, we have already planned out many of the days ahead. We fill the blocks with activities that we deem important enough to take up that allotted amount of time. I know, without asking, that if I asked to look at Josh and Shea’s calendar at the end of 2015 as they were writing out their plans for the new year, I might have seen things such as “finish gutters on new house”, “engagement session”, “wedding shoot”, “take Eva’s 3 month old pictures” or “buy furniture for new house”. I would not have seen written on any day “get diagnosed with cancer”, “PET Scan”, “radical hysterectomy”, “1st day of chemo”, or “radiation begins.”
As much as we think we are in control, there’s comes a defining day for all of us when we learn we are not. Life is filled with things we do not expect to happen, but the Bible tells us that we are to trust God and continue to worship Him. This is what Faith is all about. Sometimes our journeys and the pages in our book get so complicated , so unpredictable, and so messy. It’s in those times that we all want to look up and find those people who will stand by us, say “me too”, but most importantly, pray for us. Phillipians 4:6 says “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God”. //
THEN, on top of all of this, they surprised me with sweet Jason Roy, of Building 429… HE CAME TO SING… FOR ME!
Blows me away. He played some of my favorite worship songs and we all joined in.
This day. Wow. I can’t help but wonder if THIS is what God wants His ‘church’ to look like.
How everyone has blessed us… our cup is overflowing. POURING. There aren’t enough warm and fuzzy words to describe how loved, lifted up and supported we felt this day, and every day since I shared my diagnosis… and still feel today. This 30 minutes of prayer, worship and love prepared me for the first week of chemo, for the 5 rounds to follow… for the 25 days of radiation. I’m pumped up and ready to fight this cancer!
It’s been one month since my diagnosis. Just 3 weeks since my hysterectomy. I finished one week of chemo and have 5 more rounds. It’s amazing how your life can change. SO. FAST. I’m ready to move forward and onward to share how God has healed me! Thank you to each person who has prayed and are praying… and for all the BEAUTIFUL friends and family that stood outside on a breezy super-bowl Sunday to pray over your friend, your photographer, your sister/daughter. I know God was present and was so proud of His children.
Huge thank you to Sara Rose for taking these photos on this very special day. I love you, friend. So much!