In Christ Alone: My Journey through Breast Cancer

a 35-year old, christian, mother of four, missionary/pastor's wife's story

God’s Perfect Plan? April 1, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — awilmeth @ 6:06 AM

This March marks 5 years I have been battling this stage 4 metastatic breast cancer. What a ride it has been! 10 surgeries, 3 different times through radiation therapy, and 13 different types of chemotherapy later, and I am still here fighting and living life!
God has supplied just what I needed exactly when I needed it on this journey! I have an amazing support system in my family, friends, medical team, and community. As my life verse says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13) God gives me strength when I need it to do the things He wants me to do. He also gives me rest when I need it. “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28) When my treatments steal my energy, I have to plan time to rest and rely on my amazing support system God has given to help me.
Through my cancer, God has taught me so many things and worked so many miracles for us and all of you to see. He truly has given me the grace to bear it. “There is no greater mercy that I know of on earth than good health except it be sickness; and that has often been a greater mercy to me than health,” Charles Spurgeon said. “It is a good thing to be without a trouble; but it is a better thing to have a trouble, and know how to get grace enough to bear it.” It is only by God’s grace that I can stand, holding up the lamp stand so others can find the grace they need to face their troubles, whatever they may be. God is the only One who can give you the grace you are searching for!
Our family has been reading about the end of Jesus life on earth this past week as we celebrated Resurrection Day! Just as with the plan for Jesus’ life, God has a perfect plan for my life through this cancer journey. Peter talked about God’s plan for Jesus’ life in Acts 2: “This Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death. But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power.” (Acts‬ ‭2:23-24‬‬‬) That plan for Jesus to suffer and die and rise again would not be what we would choose to show His sacrifice for our sin and His triumph over death, but it was God’s perfect plan. We would not have chosen a battle with cancer that has continued for five years now, but it is God’s perfect plan He is using to accomplish His perfect will in my life and many others. I am so thankful for God’s love, mercy, and grace for each day.
Are you trusting God to work out His perfect plan through your troubles in this life? Are you turning to Him for the grace that you need to stand today, no matter what may come?

 

Wilmeths on the Move March 15, 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — awilmeth @ 7:10 PM

Medical Update:

Praise the Lord, my current chemo treatment is continuing to control my cancer and keep it from growing! I still have one small lump under the skin on my back and a few tiny lesions on my right chest area that we are watching closely. I have been on this treatment since July, so that is a very long time for one treatment to continue working in my case.
My 3-week chemo cycle consists of 2 consecutive weeks of Gemzar and then 1 week off to recover, along with weekly Herceptin treatments. I continue to have chemo fatigue, extremely low energy, and enter the chemo “fog” for a few days after each treatment of my Gemzar. I am usually able to plan around this and, with Eric’s help, keep my schedule clear for a couple days each week when the effects are at their worst. The chemo also knocks down my blood counts pretty good, requiring 1-2 Neupogen immune system booster shots each 3-week cycle. These also add the side effects of light, sound, and touch sensitivity.

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I am very thankful for my good days and the time I can spend with family and friends and doing things in my community. I am thankful for the strength and energy God gives me to be able to do “normal” things like playing outside with Asher, volunteering in the kids’ classes at school, and meeting a friend for lunch. Even on the bad days, God sends His blessings! If I can get a nap in during the afternoon, I can usually handle a bit of reading books or playing card games with the kids. And snuggles with the kids as I rest on the couch are always a special blessing!

Sabbatical Update:

I am so thankful for my wonderful husband and all he does for me and our family! I truly do not know what I would do without him. Thank you to all who have continued to pray for and support us these last 6 months as we were on our medical sabbatical. This time has been just what our family needed to rest, recuperate, and prepare for our next step. We were able to enjoy a break from weekly ministry work responsibilities, and focus on building up our relationship with God and our relationships within our own family. God granted us an amazing week long trip to Florida in October, where we experienced His amazing creation and did many fun and adventurous activities together as a family! Then we were able to have some low-key, relaxing holidays reflecting on what we have to be thankful for and finding ways to bless and encourage others around us.

The Next Step:

After the New Year, we began more actively searching out opportunities for our next ministry. One thing we have learned on this sabbatical is that God will always take care of us and provide for all we need and then some! Wherever He leads us, He will be there with us. We wanted to be open to whatever ministry God had for us. We began looking at the strengths and gifts that God has developed in us and how to best utilize those talents in our next ministry. We looked at leading a new church plant, assisting with another church plant, and assisting at an established church, among a few other specialized opportunities. We had to add the demands of battling cancer to the mix, so that eliminated some of the options before us pretty quickly.

We gathered much information, sought godly counsel, and prayed earnestly for God to make the next step on our path clear to us. We found out what Proverbs 16:9 really meant: “The mind of man plans his way, But the LORD directs his steps.” When we looked at things logically and what would be an easier transition and fit in our mind, we were inclined to a couple of opportunities before us. But as we gathered more information and sought God’s leading, those doors began to close for various reasons, and we were directed to an unexpected opportunity. This would require a big change for our entire family, but would use all the talents and gifts God had been developing in us throughout our lives and ministry experiences to help further church planting in the US, a passion of our hearts!

We began exploring this opportunity looking for God to shut the door somewhere, as it would require many big changes, including moving pretty far, finding a new medical team for my cancer treatment, and uprooting our whole family from friends and extended family, our support system, schools, and community. But as we looked at each one of these obstacles, God clearly showed how He would supply for each need and take care of us.IMG_20160315_181026 The words of Joshua 1:9 kept returning to our hearts and minds, “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

So we can now officially announce the Wilmeths are accepting the call to go to Grafton, Ohio (near Cleveland) where Eric will become the Operations Manager at our mission agency, Baptist Church Planters! While we are sad to leave many near and dear friends in Nebraska and Iowa, we are also excited to see what God will do on our next great adventure!

In the mean time, we plan to report to our supporting churches here in the Midwest over the next few months as we prepare for our big move this summer. We would love to see as many of you as possible before we move, so check our schedule to see when we will be reporting in your area or contact us to set up a meeting! Please continue to pray for us as we work through the many details of our long-distance move, start to pack up our house, as well as travel to reporting meetings on weekends (visit wilmeth.org to see our schedule). We know that the Lord our God will be with us wherever we go!

 

Amazing Adventures, Answers, & Awe November 11, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — awilmeth @ 10:06 AM
The Wilmeth Family enjoying God's beautiful & magnificent masterpiece and blessings in Florida!

The Wilmeth Family enjoying God’s beautiful & magnificent masterpiece and blessings in Florida!

We once again cannot express in words our thanks to so many who have helped bear our burdens and experience a time of respite on our journey. We stand in awe of how God orchestrated so many people and details to come together in such a short time for such a huge blessing in our trip to Florida!
Sometimes in the midst of our trials and the difficulties of everyday life, it is hard to see and believe in the promised blessings from God. We don’t see, from our human perspective, any possible way for things to get better or that God can deliver us from what we are facing. But if we patiently wait on the Lord, He will accomplish His purposes and shower down His blessings in due time! I hope our story of blessings will help you take heart and patiently wait and trust in God’s perfect plan and timing in your life!
Psalm 34:8,10 says:
“Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good;
Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!
…Those who seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.”

Our trip to Florida was an Amazing Adventure for our family that we never really dreamed would be possible and that we will never forget! Here are some of the details God orchestrated:
Cancer Treatment – My doctor wanted me to take at least one week off of my chemo before we left on our trip to ensure my white blood cell counts and platelet counts were high enough to keep me from getting sick or having issues while we were gone. Then I would also be off chemo the week we were gone. Any time I have taken more than 1 week off of treatment my cancer has begun to grow at a rather alarming rate. Also, the timing of the trip would require me to have chemo 3 weeks in a row before these 2 weeks off. Normally my body can only handle 2 weeks in a row and then requires a week off to recover. We knew that God had worked out all of the details of getting the trip in place for this time, so He could work out these details in my treatment schedule as well! And He did! I was able (1) to tolerate 3 weeks of chemo in a row, (2) my counts recovered for the trip, and (3) my cancer only had minimal growth while I was off chemo for 2 weeks!!!! Praise God for working out these details of my cancer treatment! What amazing answers to our prayers!
Good health, strength, & energy – Many, many prayers were brought on behalf of my energy levels. The longer I am on chemo, the more and more fatigued I have become and the longer it takes for my body to bounce back. There were so many amazing things we wanted to do and experience together as a family in Florida that we will probably never have the opportunity to do together again, so we knew only God’s strength would allow us to do them all. God answered these prayers and gave all of us strength, energy, and good health to enjoy so many experiences together! Eric’s sister was also able to join us on the trip and help out with Asher and the kids, so Eric and I didn’t expend all our energy just getting ready for each day. More amazing blessings!
Rejoicing in the Lord – We did exciting and exhilarating things and we were also able to relax and enjoy time together as a family. We saw God’s amazing creation in interesting animals and creatures of the sea. We saw God’s amazing handiwork in the ocean waves and His specially crafted masterpiece in the beautiful sunset on the beach. We were able to give thanks to God each day for His blessings and the many who had made these experiences possible for us!
Generous donors to provide for every need – It was also quite amazing just to see God work out all the details to get the trip in place in the time of about one month! From the gifted plane tickets, to park and attraction tickets and hotel accommodations from the Memories of Love Foundation, to the rental car expenses, to unique dining and excursion experiences, to souvenirs to remind us of this Amazing Florida Adventure, everything was provided for! Every time a different item came up on our list in planning for the trip, we received a gift or gift card to cover it completely! God amazingly provided for every detail through so many generous and loving individuals! We truly did not “lack any good thing” on our Adventure!

Thank you, thank you, thank you to all who prayed for us and/or gave a gift to make this trip possible! We are going through our pictures and I hope to share more details with you soon of our Adventure and some lessons God is teaching as we reflect on this experience! Today I will leave you with a highlight reel of pictures to give you a taste of our Adventure. “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!” (Psalm 34:8)

 

 

A Wish Granted! A Huge Unexpected Blessing! October 3, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — awilmeth @ 6:48 PM

Thank you to all those that have been praying for our family to be blessed during this time of sabbatical. God definitely hears and answers!
A lot can happen and change in just one week! Last week we were offered the amazing gift of plane tickets for our entire family to go anywhere in the US. The possibilities are endless with places to go and things to see. We wanted to go somewhere we probably could never go otherwise with our family of 6 in between my cancer treatment. We asked for ideas from friends and got an overwhelming response of great ideas!

Next, we had to consider the cost of the rest of our trip. Food, lodging, and transportation alone add up quickly for 6 people. Then add on prices of admission or entrance fees for activities. We soon realized that many of the places on our list would not be possible.

Then, a friend shared with us a foundation that grants wishes to families with a parent battling a life-threatening illness. Memories of Love Foundation provides hotel accommodations for 5 nights in Orlando, FL plus tickets for your ENTIRE family to Sea World, Universal Studios, and Universal Island of Adventures. This seemed incredible as topping our list of places to go was Florida! The kids have never seen the ocean before and there are so many fun things to do in the Orlando area.

We quickly got all of the information and began working on filling out the application. We had to select our first and second choice dates for the trip to submit with our application, so I contacted my cousin who is using her airline points to get the tickets to find out when she would have enough points. She found a week at the end of October that she had enough points to go now, otherwise we’d have to wait at least a couple months.

That is REALLY soon! But we looked at the pros and cons of going now or waiting and decided we would go for it and see how things worked out. We finished the paperwork, got approval from my doctor, and submitted our application on Tuesday. Later that afternoon we got an email that they were checking on hotel availability for our dates! Then, on Friday we got THE CALL! A hotel had been secured and our wish had been granted! The Wilmeth Family is going to FLORIDA!!!

It still seems surreal that this trip is even possible for us. God has orchestrated so many little details to come together at the perfect time to make this trip a reality for our family! Thank you to all who have been praying for God to bless our family. We never imagined it would be something like this! “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)

We are so excited to share this time together as a family! We will always be able to look back and see how God worked to provide this huge blessing in such a short amount of time. If He cares about our family having a special vacation together, how much more does He care for and watch over us in the challenges of our everyday lives.

“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. ” (1 Peter 5:6-7)

Thank you to ALL who have in some way helped or prayed to make this amazing blessing possible for our family! Please continue to pray as we plan out the details and prepare for this trip by adjusting my chemo treatments so I can have sufficient white blood cell counts and energy to enjoy this special time. My treatment has been very effective in shrinking my cancer over the last 2 months, but it has also continued to steal my energy for longer periods after each treatment. God has worked out all the details so far, so I know He can answer these prayers for a special time of respite for our family.

 

I’m Not Home Yet! September 1, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — awilmeth @ 11:31 AM

The title of my last blog (I Get to Go Home Now) apparently caused a bit of concern for some people. I thought I should give everyone a medical update so you know where things stand.😉
In June, my chemo treatments were causing many undesired side effects that were making it hard for me to even function normally when I did have energy. I actually looked and felt like I was on hard chemo again. Then, my cancer began to grow again, showing this chemo had become ineffective against the cancer. A change in plans was necessary once again.
At the end of June, I began on my new chemo regimen, Gemzar in combination with Herceptin. For the recommended cycle, I receive Herceptin every week, and Gemzar is on a 2 weeks on, 1 week off cycle. The very first week of treatment the cancer tumors and lesions we can see and feel responded and began shrinking! My side effects were minimal at first, but it did knock my white blood cell count and my platelets down pretty good. Along with my shot to boost my counts, I had to take a week off from the Gemzar until my counts came back up.
Then in July due to some conferences and meetings we attended, along with some fun family time, I had to miss another week of Gemzar. In that 1 week off of treatment, the cancer began to grow slightly. Thankfully, the next dose of Gemzar knocked it back down again and the cancer has been shrinking ever since! My side effects do continue to increase the longer I am on this drug. I continue to need shots to boost my counts back up every time I receive Gemzar, and my energy continues to decrease. I am very thankful that I do not struggle with the digestive issues I was having previously. Will you rejoice with me in God’s strength, provision, and healing? Will you pray with me that I will continue to tolerate the chemo well and that it will continue to control and shrink my cancer? Pray also that I can manage my time and energy wisely to accomplish what God is doing in and through me.
This past weekend, I had the privilege of attending the Women of Faith Loved Tour and was greatly encouraged and refreshed. During one session, Building 429 put on an amazing concert for us! My favorite part was hearing the story behind their song “Where I Belong.” I have always loved this song and it’s message. Now I find it was inspired by a fellow breast cancer fighter and her words in one of her most difficult times, “Take this world and give me Jesus!”
The truth is that my cancer could turn at any time and God could call me home. I’ve had to face that possibility and decide whether I will trust God and rest in His promises or turn away to someone or something else in this world. As I look back and see all God has done in my life, the miracles He’s done for me, the strength & peace He has given, the hope & joy He puts in my heart, I can relate to the disciples’ answer in John 6. When Jesus asked the disciples if they wanted to go away too, Peter responded, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God.” No other person or thing in this world can give me the grace, strength, joy, peace, and hope I need for this journey. So I whole-heartedly agree, “Take this world and give me Jesus!” While His plan may not be what I would want, I know that “for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”‭‭ (Romans‬ ‭8:28) Even in the midst of a difficult battle with cancer, I can testify that God always keeps His promises! I hope that you have taken the opportunity to consider that this life is fragile and things can change in a moment for anyone, even you. Where will you turn in your most difficult hour?
BUT, as the song also says, “All I know is I’m not home yet!” God is still unfolding His perfect plan for my life. While I do look forward to going home someday, I do not want to waste the time He has blessed me with on this earth. I get to live each day with my wonderful family and friends and neighbors right where God has placed me. I am His ambassador to aid and help others right here who need God’s precious hope and unexplainable peace and joy in their lives. This is my prayer for each of you reading this today:
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. (‭‭Romans‬ ‭15:13‬)
Are you living your life in view of eternity? Do you place your trust and hope in God for your eternal salvation? “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved!” (Acts‬ ‭16:31‬) Do you live each day redeeming the time you have, using your talents and time to love God and love others? I challenge you to take a look at what you are spending your time and gifts doing. Is God directing you to make any changes to use your time and resources more wisely in ways that will have an eternal impact? Don’t wait! We don’t know when the day and hour will come when it will be our turn to say, “I get to go home now.”

 

I Get to Go Home Now August 26, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — awilmeth @ 7:06 AM

I wasn’t sure how I would feel or which direction to turn when this day finally came. Life has been culminating to this day for months, even years now. God’s hand has been clearly seen and He has been orchestrating all the events leading here, but still it is not what we were originally hoping for or envisioning at this point. Thankfully God’s ways are higher than our ways! If we had received all the things we wanted, so much more would have been missed. Literally countless precious people would not have received the blessings, help, guidance, and encouragement they needed through God’s people here.

The Big News

After much prayer, seeking God’s wisdom and direction, and seeking the counsel of others, our family has been directed to take a medical leave of absence from our full time work in the ministry. As missionaries, we are sent out by and report to our Sending Church. After examining and seeing first-hand:

(1) the magnitude of the job of leading a church planting effort without the support of a full core team

PLUS

(2) the added and ongoing affects on our entire family of my now 4-1/2 year battle with cancer,

our Sending Church has called for us to begin a sabbatical time on September 1st. This will be a time for us to focus on the physical, spiritual, and mental well-being and healing of each member of our immediate family, without the additional daily demands of pastoring, teaching, and everything involved in leading a church planting effort.

Now What?

We have never been down this particular path before, so there will be a lot of learning as we go. We want to be good stewards of the resources and support God has given us. We are eternally grateful and thankful for all the prayers, gifts, love, and support we have received through so many to sustain us and supply ALL our needs to this point. While a part of us is sad and grieving the loss of what has been a huge part of our lives for many years, we also have a hope for what is to come next! When God closes one door, He always opens another. We still trust and believe God’s promise, “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (‭‭Romans‬ ‭8:28‬) So what is our next step?

I am often surprised at the ways and moments God uses to reveal the next step to me.:) As I ran to the store to grab a few groceries we needed yesterday, I was struck by the conversation I had in the checkout lane. I went into the store with a short list of what I needed. I was able to find those items, plus a few others I hadn’t put on my list, quickly and efficiently, plus find a short checkout line. (That combination of things all working out at once is quite a miracle itself, now that I think about it!) So when the checker turned to me, I had a smile on my face. He was caught off-guard and commented that he just did not see that from anyone in the checkout line. He asked how I could be so happy. The first thing that popped into my head was I think it’s because I get to go home now. There’s no place like home!

As I reflected on that phrase “I get to go home now”, I realized that it is true for me on so many levels. I efficiently finished my “job” of getting some groceries for my family, and now I can go home and use what is left of my energy to spend time with my family.

On another level. We have now also finished our current, church planting work for the time being. It was like God was speaking to my heart saying, “You have been faithful and finished this job that I called you here to do. Now I am calling you to come home to prepare for what is next. Rest in Me. Draw close to Me, Your Source of peace, joy, and strength.” We see in the gospels that Jesus was always about His Father’s business wherever He went, yet He still took time to go away and spend time alone with His Father. Now, our family gets to have a time to go home, connecting with God, Our Father, and each other, growing closer to on another in these relationships, and serving one another as we live life together, preparing for what is next.:)

(Side Note: God has not led us to move or go to another location at this time, so we will still be here and in need of our wonderful friends and family to surround us. Don’t be strangers!)

On a third level, I also can’t help but liken this phrase “I get to go home now” to the Hope I have in my eternal home. I don’t know what circumstances of this life lie in the days ahead. God knows, and He will guide me every step of the way. I do know that one day I will get to go to my Eternal Home in Paradise to live with My Father forever, free from cancer and all the difficulties of this life. What a glorious day that will be!

Today is a stepping stone to the next big thing God has for our lives. He definitely has something planned, we just don’t know all the details yet. He is just showing us the next step at this moment, not shining a spotlight illuminating the entire path yet. Thank you for your continued love, prayers, and support as God reveals the next exciting steps to us!

Psalm 119:105 – “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”

 

Thanksgiving and Recipe Tweaks June 12, 2015

Filed under: Uncategorized — awilmeth @ 4:43 PM

One of the names of God in the Bible I have come to know well is Jehovah-Jireh which means “The LORD Will Provide”. God has provided, continues to provide, and will provide in the future! He continually provides help, encouragement, strength, wisdom, and grace for each step of this journey. I have composed a Thankfulness List and invite you to rejoice with us and thank God for all He has recently done according to His plan and purpose in our lives.

I’m Thankful For…

  • An amazing husband who consistently seeks God’s will for our family and is my best friend who seeks to love me as Christ loved the church, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, till death do us part. (He even cooks and cleans as necessary!)
  • Energy to volunteer in my kiddo’s classrooms and the PTO this school year, working with AMAZING kids, parents, and staff
  • Energy to see our kids and their friends in all of their end of school year concerts, awards ceremonies, picnics, and graduations. We officially have a 7th, 3rd, & 2nd grader now! It’s a precious gift to see each of them grow in their love for God and their love for those around them, each in their own unique and creative way.
  • Energy to spend time with the kids doing homework, reading, going to the park, playing ball in the backyard, playing games, and just being together
  • Adam playing the song It Is Well With My Soul on the piano for anyone who will listen
  • Faith composing and performing her own song at school about how we are never alone on the roller coaster of life-God is always there with us!
  • Ethan’s hugs, snuggles, and ‘I love you until forever’s just when I need them
  • Asher’s precious smile, sweet voice, expressive faces, and endless energy that spread happiness and joy each day. A perfect little miracle from God for me to teach and watch learn and grow each day! (And he still takes an afternoon nap so mom can rest up from chemo fatigue most days!)
  • The opportunity to sing 10,000 Reasons with my family and reunite with precious friends and faithful supporters in Iowa
  • Amazing prayer warriors that I meet wherever I go! There are so many that are praying for us around the town, state, country, and even around the world!
  • The opportunity to meet some if my faithful prayer warriors while speaking at a Ladies Brunch and encourage them to be planting and watering seeds in their community wherever God takes them each day
  • Dear friends and family to provide help around the house and with the kids
  • An AMAZING community that has come together to provide countless meals and give us many special blessings to enjoy as a family this summer!
  • Precious church family to encourage us as we live life together in Bennington
  • The opportunity to worship our great God, greet and fellowship with my church family, teach application of Biblical truths in Jr. Church, and play in the nursery in our church each week
  • An intern for our church this year to help with our church planting work responsibilities and experience church planting first hand (Thanks for all your work, Josh!)
  • A spacious home always open to many encouraging visitors and dear friends throughout the year (Let us know when you want to stop by for a visit!)
  • Energy to work with great community members through the Bennington Friends of the Library to provide learning opportunities and community events
  • The kids (and Eric) spoiling me by decorating the house, making cards, getting me flowers, balloons, chocolates, gifts, and taking me out for dinner to celebrate my birthday! (Thanks for financing the endeavor, Dad!)
  • My very first manicure/pedicure and a trim for my hair that is growing back! (Thanks to Project Pink’d, Inner Beauty, and Xenon Academy for hosting a pampering night for cancer survivors!)
  • Time alone with my hubby! My knight in shining armor took me to a beautiful castle right here in Omaha! We also got to spend time working on some projects together, going out for dinner and ice cream on a whim, and spending time with great friends without kiddos running around. It was a wonderful break, but we sure missed our kiddos! (Thanks to our wonderful parents for keeping them for us!)
  • Many love offerings from fellow Christians, sister churches, and missionary groups
  • New free eye glasses provided for Eric and Faith
  • Our own backyard garden to plant, water, and grow some of our own food
  • Many gifts from friends, acquaintances, and even strangers to meet our needs
  • Many cards, emails, and messages to encourage our hearts in the day to day
  • A quick and full recovery from my 10th surgery in April
  • Many medical options for my continued chemo treatment to battle my cancer
  • Caring and compassionate nurses, doctors, and medical staff that are walking this cancer journey with me and cheering me on
  • A scholarship to cover my entire medical insurance deductible for this year (Thanks to the Patient Advocate Foundation and its donors!)
  • Wonderful chemo friends to share the ups and downs of the cancer journey with each week
  • Peace that passes all understanding, knowing my Sovereign God is in control and wants to work all things together for good (Even my cancer journey!)
  • A loving, gracious, and merciful God who is working out His perfect plan for our lives

With such an amazing list of blessings, I can only praise God for how He guides and provides. Thank you to each of you that have been and continue to be part of the provision God has given to our family! Each member of Team Wilmeth plays a vital part in our lives. Because of each of you I can truly claim the words of Psalm 23:

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil;
For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever.”

You may be wondering what the Recipe Tweaks in the title refers to. As we look to what lies ahead, we are once again preparing for change. Until this week, my new chemo regimen of Xeloda and Herceptin seemed to be at least keeping the cancer from growing. My side effects from the Xeloda got progressively worse each round to the point that some adjustments would have to be made this week to continue. But in the last week we saw the cancer begin to grow again on my right chest area. The new spots on my back also showed some changes. So once again a change in my treatment plan is coming next week. Will you pray for wisdom for my oncologist as he researches treatment options and decides what tweaks are needed this week? Pray that the next step will be clear to us and we can rest in the promise that God is faithful and He will make a way for us once again.

 

 
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