All Part of the Plan
I had been diagnosed with breast cancer and I needed God's reassurance. I found it during a church service I attended.
BY: Eileen Fisher
I’m here, Lord, I thought as we walked inside the church.I need to know that you’re with me
The service was pleasant enough, yet I struggled to feel God’s reassurance. All through the sermon I couldn’t shake the loneliness and despair from in my dream. If I couldn’t face telling anyone about my cancer diagnosis, how was I going to face fighting the cancer itself?
We filed out with the congregation after the last hymn. “Eileen!” A woman I didn’t recognize hurried toward me. “It’s Meg Garrett! From the kids’ camp, remember? We’re starting a Bible study here in the annex on Tuesday mornings,” she said. “Won’t you come? We need some new members.”
I was never any good at names, but I usually had a knack for remembering faces. I had absolutely no recollection of ever meeting this woman. Yet Molly had gone to day camp....“Can you make it?” Meg asked again.
Somehow I couldn’t say no. “Sure,” I said. “I’ll try to make it.”
“I don’t know how she remembers me,” I said to Scott on the way home. Perhaps she had mistaken me for another Eileen? No matter. I doubted I’d be going back to that church on Tuesday. What were the chances of our ever running into Meg again?
Come Monday night I couldn’t get Meg off my mind. “I don’t have anything else to do tomorrow,” I told Scott as we got into bed. “The only things on my schedule for the next few months are doctor visits. Maybe a Bible study will help keep me focused.”
The next morning I went back to the church. I parked my car in front of the annex. Women I didn’t know chatted, pulling up folding chairs and drinking coffee. I took a seat and immediately regretted it.What am I doing here?
No Bible study would solve this problem. I glanced at the door, wondering if I could slip out unnoticed.
A woman stood up. “We have three classes to choose from,” she explained. I half-listened to the first two classes, then she named the last one. “Lord Heal My Hurts,” the woman announced. “God as the Great Physician.”
I settled into my seat. This was the reassurance I’d craved.
“I’m glad you came,” whispered Meg, sitting down beside me.
If only she knew! It had taken a mysterious roadblock, a late-morning church service and a friend I didn’t remember to rescue me. But once God got hold of me, he didn’t let me go. He helped me share the burden of my illness with my sister Mary and the rest of my family, and with my new friends at Bible study.
With everyone’s loving support, I made it through chemotherapy and some difficult decisions about my treatment. Five years later, God is still with me. Fear is just a memory.