by gloria minatti
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As I sit staring out the window contemplating about my past I am moved with sadness because I may soon lose the privilege of enjoying the pleasures of life. I was just diagnosed two weeks ago with cervical cancer. My whole life I thought I would see my kids grow up, and have children of their own. Now this may all be just a fantasy. I believed in God, but never really had a true relationship with Him. Always scurrying about with my daily routine, it became difficult to be still. With soccer practice and assignments at work, there was never really any time to sit down and meditate on the i goodness of God. It seemed to farfetched to me. At this moment looking at creation right outside my window has brought me to a place of solitude. Not because I wanted it, but life seem to have its own ideas for me. So I succumbed to its call, and began for the first time in years - to pray.
For the first time I had to believe in something or someone other than myself. I have always been independent. I never felt a need to trust in any source other than myself. Time after time I was the one who lifted others up when they were down, and gave when there was a need. Now it was my turn, and my pride would not let me ask for help. I felt so alone. I didn't know what I was going to do. I didn't even know how to pray, but remembered that someone told me that God hears us. I returned my gaze back into the house and looked around. I begin to sum up all that I had accumulated over the years, and found that it was not nearly as important now as it was then.
I got married young at the age of 21, and had a son. At the time of my marriage I already had a son. I was pregnant my senior year in high school, and was determined to make it out of there. I graduated and received my diploma. Now I was faced with the real challenge of life, raising a child alone. So when the man I married came along it was like a gift from God. He was willing to take on this responsibility and provide for us both. Things were so mush easier then. Whenever there was a financial problem, or something broke down in the house. He would immediately take charge and all would be taken care of. Now he was gone. He past away last year from liver cancer, and now I was alone again.
There wasn't much money, and I didn't even have health insurance. I was at the end of myself, and wondered if I could even get the words out to even ask God for anything. What would I ask Him for? How would He receive me after I had been neglecting Him all these years? My heart was so heavy today, and I wasn't in the mood to have company. My family wanted to come over and have a family dinner. We hadn't done this in quite awhile, so we decided this was a good time as any. I didn't tell them about my condition yet, because I didn't want to be treated as if I had leprosy or something. I know that it would be good intentions coming forth, but it was my pride raring its ugly head up again.
My mother was in Florida, and so being the oldest I had to hold the family together. I had four sisters, and they were all my half sisters. I always felt like an outcast ever since I found out that my father wasn't my father. What a shock it was to me to know that all those years I was kept in the dark. Glancing back over these things as I straighten up a little before my family would come. I always had trials to overcome, but overcome them I did. I prided myself on my inner strength, and others were envious of it. In 1989 I was paralyzed for a year from my neck down. The doctors never found out the reason for it, and one day I was able to walk again. When I shared this with a friend who was a minister, she shared with me that it was God's way of getting my attention. He had my intention for a while, but then the cares of the world started taking over and I forgot all about Him.
That time seemed so long ago now. It is almost oblivious to me. My sons are 18 and 11 now, and able to take care of themselves. There was really no need for me to stay around anymore. I began to recite this in my mind as I vacuumed the floors. I never realized at the time that I was falling. I was on my way into a downward motion of despair. I didn't see that the news of this disease overtaking my body, this foreign substance was beginning to overpower me. The feeling of being hedged in was overwhelming me. I felt as if I would faint, when at that moment I felt a presence. It was a presence I had never experienced before. It was real though, as if a literal person was standing there beside me. I turned to look in the direction that I felt the small breeze coming at my back. There was no one there. At least no one I could see with my natural eyes.
I felt it nevertheless, and it didn't frighten me. I had heard of people having out of body experiences or angels appearing to them; but never in my finite mind would I ever have imagined it would happen to me. I turned the vacuum off, and stood completely still. My body began to shake uncontrollably, and I then became frightened. Not because of the presence, but of what was happening to me. I had never experienced anything like this before. There was no one at home with me at the time, so this was a perfect opportunity for this to occur.
I felt as if I was in a trance. Time went by, but I don't know how much. I just stood there. I could still perceive objects around me, but it seemed that they were far away. It was as if I was looking into the realm I was in, but actually I was now in another. I began to see the most beautiful garden filled with fruit trees, and magnificent flowers. The sun was so bright, but I could look into it. It didn't hurt my eyes to gaze at it. My body started to feel warm, but it was a pleasant feeling. I felt as if I was floating, and I let myself go. The thought came to my mind that I was dying within six months, so I had nothing to lose by surrendering myself to this feeling.
I came to a lake that was the color of sapphire. It was calm and serene, as I watched it flow of the waves ripple before me. There was no one else here, not even an animal. It was only nature portraying itself to me. I sat down on the grass that was as soft as cotton, and just watched the water. As I did this thoughts came to my mind of my life. I saw how I treated my neighbor the other day. It was not very hospitable of me. I saw that I had so much bitterness in my heart for the things that happened in my life. I then saw my face in the water for it had become transparent like a mirror. I could see this ugly scowl on my face, and thought to myself how grotesque I looked.
As I saw these things I began to experience great pain in my body. It was excruciating. I held my stomach as that was where most of the pain seemed to be coming from. I thought of the cancer in my body at that moment, and how it was ravishing my insides. Attacking every organ of my reproductive system, and there was nothing I could do about it. I could get treatments, chemotherapy, or even surgery, and hope that it would solve the problem; but I had no means for any of them. Now I felt the emotion of anger well up in me. I felt betrayed and abandoned by God. How could He allow this to happen to me? Didn't He see all my good deeds that I have done? Does He not know that I am an active member in my community? This is not supposed to happen to people like me, but to those who are mean and never think to say a kind word to another person. That wasn't me!
It was then for the first time in my life I heard God speak to me. Don't ask me how I know it was Him. I just knew that it was. He told me that what was occurring on the inside of me was due to the things I had been doing on the outside. For years He had been calling me, pleading with me to come to Him, but I refused. Now I was alone, and there was no one I really trusted. He wanted me to trust Him. This was my only hope for restoration. He told me I had this type of cancer because it involved my reproductive system. This is how a child is brought forth, and when there is any malfunction in that area, it is impossible to conceive. He showed me how my bitter thoughts had gone unnoticed for so long. They had become a part of my being, and was now producing cancerous thoughts in my mind. I could no longer produce or even conceive positive thoughts about myself, let alone for someone else. This was the reason for the distrust.
He was more concerned with the mental cancer that was ravishing my mind than He was about the physical cancer. It was at that moment I broke down and cried. There were tears that I didn't realize I had in me. It was like a dam opening up, a fountain overflowing, a pipe bursting. My insides began to quake, and I screamed at the top of my lungs, "forgive me, God."
Suddenly, there was a bright light, and then I passed out. When I came to, I felt a warm sensation in my belly. It felt as if there were hands inside my belly moving. It was as if someone was performing surgery on me right then and there. I then recognized that I was back in my living room lying on the floor. Just then the door opened and my kids came in. They came over and helped me up onto the couch. They were concerned that I was lying on the floor, and asked me what happened. I relayed as much as I could to them, but they only stared at me bewildering. I remembered the last words I said to them before my family showed up at the door. "I am healed of cancer!" I knew it with all my heart and being. When I let go of all those negative emotions that were eating away at me for 20 years, a miracle took place in my body.
That day a miraculous feat was performed in my consciousness that forever changed my way of thinking. It changed the whole course of my life. It was another chance to be the woman that I was destined to be. I am grateful for another chance at life and vowed that I would not waste one minute of it. It was confirmed by the doctors that a miracle was truly performed in me. They too have to a greater reverence for the unknown. May we all come to the place of surrender, and know that the joy of the true reality of life is within us.
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Hi Gloria, This is truly a touching and exciting article. I too am a cancer survivor. However I was already a Christian at the time of my encounter with the big C. Even though I had to have a mastectomy, He brought me through with NO FEAR! Which is a miracle in itself and one that my family really appreciated. He really is THE GREAT PHYSICIAN! Your article is a real blessing. Thank you, Sharon
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