How Faith Helped Me Cope with Mesothelioma Cancer

Cancer & Caregiving

How strong is your faith? This is a question most people don’t think about often.

But what if you were just told you had mesothelioma and your faith was the only thing you had to lean on? 

For a quick moment let’s get to the basics of what faith really is. Faith to me is believing something good is going to happen even though the odds are stacked against you.

Even when statistics say one thing, or your situation constraints are saying doom and gloom, you have faith that everything will work out for your good.

My faith was tested during my battle with peritoneal mesothelioma. Just like anyone else, I had my moments where I questioned God and asked, “Why me? What did I do so wrong that I would have cancer?”

We’re all human, and our minds do wander to places that they shouldn’t. Remember one thing: Don’t allow your mind to dwell in that state. Even after all the various thoughts, I just knew I was going to be all right. Faith will definitely give you peace.

I made the decision to activate my crazy faith! I had faith in God, knowing that he would heal me. It’s something I just knew. I imagined myself being cancer-free. I spoke my healing into the atmosphere with faith. I saw it, I spoke it and I believed it.

Having Faith in the Battle

Faith played a pivotal role in my battle with mesothelioma. When I learned the horrible news about what peritoneal mesothelioma was and the poor prognosis, my faith kept me lifted.

When I encountered pain in my stomach reminding me I had cancer, my faith kept me going. Even the earlier portion of my diagnosis, when the oncologist wasn’t aware of proper treatment options for me, my faith is what gave me hope. 

Have you heard the saying, “Prayer changes things”? I’m a true believer in the power of prayer. One thing that is the force behind prayer is faith. Prayer can go where we can’t. It can reach heights and depths that we can’t see. 

Picture this: You’re in the Army and you’re going to battle. Would you forget your weapons? Probably not!

During the time I was fighting mesothelioma I brought all my weapons of warfare, and my faith was at the forefront. You can’t win a battle when you already feel defeated. 

When I was presented with the treatment option of surgery, I didn’t dwell on the decision. My faith made it easier for me to say, yes, I will have the HIPEC surgery. I thought, wow, this is going to be my way of being cancer-free.

The thing is, when you have faith you don’t know how your story will take form or how things will play out, and that’s not for us to worry about.

Church Family Is Family 

Gratefulness fills my heart when I think of my church family. I thank God for placing them in my life. Although we were hours away, I still felt their presence and prayers.

On days when loneliness tried to linger, either myself or my husband would get a call from our church family, just checking in and keeping me lifted in prayer. 

Knowing that someone is thinking of you and praying for your healing is better than receiving baked meals in a pretty casserole dish. Having friends and family who will call to have prayer with you is so refreshing and helpful to your mental and spiritual state.

Some ways to provide support to a church member during their battle with cancer are:

  • Call and offer prayer. This will bring hope and reassurance to them, knowing that someone else is believing in them for their healing.
  • Send a card of encouragement. The encouragement you send might be just what they need at that particular time.
  • Gift them an inspirational journal. This will allow them to journal their experiences and to jot down their thoughts.
  • Treat them normally. There is no reason to feel sorry for or have pity on someone just because they have cancer.

I’m sure there are many other ways you can offer support to a church member who is battling cancer. For the most part, follow your heart and remember: Keep it uplifting.

It’s been 14 years since my diagnosis and I can say I still have my faith, but I no longer have cancer. Keep the faith!

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