About the Author

As a breast cancer survivor passionate about healing and hope, Emily and her beloved live in Oregon with their three kids. Her days and heart are filled with homeschooling, good coffee, life-giving friendships, time outdoors, healing and learning, and living gratefully for the gift of each day and God’s graces.

Related Resources & Gifts
Find more at DaySpring.com
Related
Resources
& Gifts
Find more at
DaySpring.com
Recent Posts

Reader Interactions

Comments

  1. Emily,
    Oh our expectation of how WE think things should go. I can relate to your story. The thorn in my side has been a lifelong struggle with an anxiety disorder and episodes of depression. I used to curse it, but because of it, I have been drawn into a very close, personal, loving relationship with the Lord that is based on total reliance and dependence. I would not be here had it not been for the illness. Also now going through a series of surgeries has returned me once again to remember that, I can do all things through Him, but apart from Him I can do NOTHING. Sometimes our “curses” can turn out to be our greatest blessings. Praying for continued and increasing strength and stamina for you.
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

    • Thank you Bev for always being here to encourage the ladies that share their stories. But this morning thank you for your words that encourage me. My family and I have gone through so many painful trials. My husband in a logging accident when he was 34 that ended his being able to work. Our youngest daughter being diagnosed with crohns, the loss of our oldest son, our home burning down. The loss of so many family members one on top of the other. My work injury that has left me with a spine full of prolapsed and herniated discs , living in chronic pain. The list goes on but this is not a pity party, I know that everyone has their battles. God has shown us unbelievable grace, mercy, and favor. It is the battle I am now that has thrown me. My Dr.’s say I am struggling with depression, stress and anxiety and yet I have a difficult time accepting this. I don’t feel like I am , yet the things I enjoy most I don’t attend. I have not hardly attended church in the last 2 years, I get up get myself ready then I can’t do it. I’m sorry this is so long but I don’t understand what is happening with me and I would really appreciate your prayers, I know what needs to happen in my life but I can’t seem to rise above. If anyone else has gone THROUGH (that is to say I know I will get there ) something like this I would really appreciate your words of wisdom.
      Thank you

      • Cyndi I can totally relate with you. I have been going threw similar circumstances ( anxiety and depression) . I very much feel for people like myself because you can so much better understand when you have been threw it yourself. I believe that is God. How old are you? I am 48, and believe I am in peri- menopause. Do you think this is possible? Just trying to help if I can. I have had similar symptoms. Loss of interest in anything. If you want to talk more please let me know. Will be praying for you.

        Darlene

      • Cyndi,
        I am not an expert, but I can share what I’ve experienced with depression and anxiety. I know the feeling that when some asks, “Can you pour me a bowl of cereal?” and it sounds like they’ve asked you to climb Mt. Everest. In your life, you have been through an EXTREME amount of stress based on all the things and events you mentioned. Depression can be clinical (caused by chemical imbalance) and situational (based on circumstances and life situations) and sometimes a mix of both. Stress can deplete the good chemistry in our brain which facilitates our sense of wellbeing and aids with coping mechanisms.

        Though I have had anxiety and depression from a chemical imbalance, when I went through a divorce, multiple surgeries and other distinct trials, my anxiety and depression worsened. I felt depleted. I think your doctors are definitely on to something especially based on the stress you’ve been through. Your body may just need some help temporarily to get back to an even keel. There is no shame or stigma about that. I know some Christians will say if you just had more faith, or just prayed more, or read more scripture….but when you are depressed and anxious, you can’t even absorb the goodness scripture holds at times. Depression and anxiety plague Christians….I’m living proof. Though I am on a much lower dosage of medicine, I know that my body needs this. I liken it to telling a diabetic that if they just prayed more or read more scripture they wouldn’t need insulin or their medicine. Depression and anxiety are illnesses….not flaws in character. I will pray for wisdom and discernment on your part. Only you can assess if the depression and anxiety are debilitating. If they are, then perhaps medical intervention is needed. Counseling may also be very helpful. Be good to yourself, you have been through so much. God does want you to have life and have it abundantly. Pray and follow His leading. He will bring you THROUGH.
        Love and ((hugs)) sweet sister,
        Bev xoxo

      • Cyndi, may our Father and our Healer and Maker equip you and enable you to rise above your difficult time and restore you to the place where you will do His will for you. Blessings!

      • Cyndi, praying for you. This past year I developed PTSD after being harrassed at work. I have had depression and anxiety in the past and this situation just sent me into a tail spin.mi too plan to go and do something, get ready and then can’t do it. Many people don’t understand and they won’t unless they have been through it or know someone who has. This has caused me to seek Him more and to trust Him to get me through the day. Do what your doctors suggest. I am on medication, going to counseling and taking care of myself physically especially getting proper rest. Not been able to go to church for a long time due to the depression and anxiety. I can tell you that things do get better and keeping your eyes on Him makes life so much easier.
        Climb up into your heavenly father’s lap and pour out your heart to Him. He will carry your burdens. Will pray for you.

      • Cyndi,

        I am praying for you. With all the extreme circumstances you’ve been through it is no wonder you feel depressed, stressed & anxious. That is a lot to take on all at once. You may not feel like being around people who are happy & content in life. I suggest you think about taking some medication or
        counseling. They may help you feel a little better. Sometimes talking about your problems with someone can help one heal. Praying for discernment & wisdom as to the course of action. I pray you feel God’s loving arms surrounding you giving you a hug! God can & will heal you in His perfect timing.

        (((((Hugs)))))

    • I am dealing sith similar issues as you, ( anxiety & depression) and I can say the same. We so often have plans of the way it should be or work out but He has other plans. It is so true if everything was good we depend less on Him. These are the very things that draw us close and help us to see our need for Him. He wants us to depend on Him totally. Thank you for sharing. I have discovered broken and beautiful is good!

      Darlene

  2. Emily, you are catching me at the tail end of a too-long period of coasting. Putting my physical health on hold while I’ve managed a series of family transitions, I’m finding myself at the end of a summer with none of my exercise or healthy eating goals met . . .
    Thank you for this reminder that it is a lifelong process. This thought in itself is a deterrent to coasting.

  3. Emily, I pray for you dear one. I understand where you are coming from as I; also, had breast cancer and my body is much slower and many things I am unable to do. I learned to take Moment by Moment with Him. Some days I must rest most of the day and others I can even work in the yard. But I am still alive to enjoy His blessings and I try to encourage others in this journey. I am 80 years old so I am still hanging in there. A friend told me when I feel like I can’t hold on to tie a knot in a rope & hang on tighter. God gives strength when we feel like we can’t go on. You are welcome to contact me if you need a shoulder. Praying for you as we depend on Him.

  4. I just finished breast cancer treatment and can very deeply relate to every word you’re saying. I realize that healing is a life long process that restores more than our physical body. Praying for your continued wellness and a lifetime of health and Reliance on God.

      • Emily. What great timing is your message. I had my last chemo in July for breast cancer. I’m 55. Never dreamed this would be me. I am more fatigued than I want to be. My mind says I can do all these things I used to do….but my body says …nope. I am having to live with my son/family for a while. That alone is not easy. I can’t work yet. I want my life back.!! You mentioned the effects last a lifetime??!! I have no job..no savings..no 401k..no husband. No way to support myself. I am in complete dependence on God for his LEADING in my LIFE.
        I AM desperate. Which keeps fully dependant on HIM. thank you so much for sharing this very timely message. I needed it.
        Wanda

  5. (((Emily))) Thank you for sharing this beautiful testimony so vulnerably. Prayers for you as you recover, may He continue to give you strength and grace for the days ahead. ((hug))

  6. Thank you for your wonderful post. Will be praying for health and healing for you. Many blessings!

    Darlene

  7. Emily you are in my prayers … I do relate to you and Paul. Like Frances said, tie a knot and hang on, that is me on a daily basis. I do not try to dwell on it as it will definitely cast dark shadows. So I try to keep busy and that in itself is a task as you know. God’s grace is sufficient, lets try to remember that when we see the dark clouds are in the distance. Love and hugs and endless prayers love. 🙂 Stay strong!

  8. Wow this is so needed I am a non hogkins lymphoma survivor I am currently receiving treatment I have moments of terror, depression and fear maybe there is a reason and even in this I am woefully dependent on God.

  9. Emily,
    Thank-you for sharing your inspiring post. Prayers that all will be well for you in your healing.
    Psalm 37.3 ‘Trust In The Lord’ can also be so comforting. Sometimes it might seem as though the light might never shine through, for instance the day of the eclipse. As I gazed at my freshly opened sunflowers I noticed how they pointed directly towards the sun. Gradually the sky darkened but only briefly. Later we took a drive and the further we drove the brighter it became. Hundreds upon hundreds of Evergreens sprang out off the mountains outlining the sky. That day I kept thinking of, Psalm 46:10’Be Still And Know That I Am God.’ How can I not?

    Have a blessed awe inspired day all,

    Penny

  10. POWERFUL encouragement here, Emily. Oftentimes the miracle we seek is not forthcoming; God doesn’t always provide instant relief or rapid healing. In the final analysis, however, your circumstances are even more miraculous. Your faith and perseverance have remained strong in spite of hardship. How does THAT happen?! By the miraculous empowerment of the Spirit. You see God’s love and grace where many people would see disappointment and despair. Is THAT normal?! Only for those with Spirit-enhanced vision. What a blessing you are, Emily, demonstrating “life in the fullness of His grace and strength!”

  11. I Am A Cancer Patient

    I am a cancer patient.
    I am also a mother, a wife, a friend.
    I have fears and uncertainty,
    and days of boundless joy and deep emotion.

    I am a cancer patient.
    I have a career and goals and a past filled with memories.
    I have days I wonder who will care for my children if I am gone-
    And days I am certain I will live forever.

    I am a cancer patient.
    I am also a survivor, an inspiration, an advocate.
    I have hope and courage
    As well as nights of restless sleep
    and days of fierce doubt and deep rage.

    I am a cancer patient.
    I am experienced in enduring medical procedures and treatments
    and feeling exposed to total strangers in whose hands I lay my future.
    I have moments of complete confusion and some of total understanding.

    I am a cancer patient.
    I am skilled at disguising my physical signs of illness
    With wigs and hats and makeup and smiles-
    But do not be fooled. . . I am afraid.

    I am a cancer patient.
    I enjoy peaceful moments amidst the uncertainty that is my life.
    I am viewed with pity, with awe, and a certain misunderstanding
    By those who have not shared my journey.

    I am a cancer patient.
    And I am blessed because I live life larger than most
    because I am acutely aware of life’s preciousness.
    I am a product of a tenuous and difficult challenge.
    And I am most thankful for the side effects that have helped me become
    A better mother, a wife, and a friend.

  12. Earlier this month I lost a friend to breast cancer – she was 41 and left a devoted husband and 5 children. Her life was a victory of total surrender in living “not my will, but Thine!!”. So often people get depressed because we take our eyes OFF ALL that God has provided for us through Jesus and look on our earthly circumstances (illness, pain. loss of work etc… – and I live with chronic illness myself so know what I am saying), but if we keep our eyes on Him we realise that our earthly situations do not matter. Of course they are hard. Some are tragic. There are days when we weep with grief and pain and grieve our loss of health. But if we believe God is in control then we need to yield, surrender and trust completely. He knows and we either trust Him or we don’t. May we all learn to journey deeper into a path of trust and surrender. Praising God for those who have been granted more time to live here on His earth. Keep shining HIS light!!!

  13. Emily, I too am a breast cancer survivor. I feel that God has drawn me closer. I smiled when discussed what it is like once you finish treatment. I hope to eventually be where you are.

  14. It seems whether it is health issues or other trials, they help us see we are not as powerful and self-sufficient as we thought or imagined we are. And like your article brings out, that is a good thing. Because it draws us to God. Develops compassion and empathy in us, and helps us better relate to and help others.

  15. Emily, my sweet, strong friend. I so remember as we followed along the online journey of another mama in similar shoes before your diagnosis. How we prayed for her, hoped for her, and wept for her. How we felt so connected to her and her family though we never had met them. And how we spoke hushed hopes of never wanting to experience that ourselves. And then it came. I remember the exact space I sat in when you called …. and we prayed, and hoped, and wept.
    And friend, you have surpassed what I could have hoped for you during this season because you have faithfully clung to the One who surpasses it all!!! Thank you for sharing His faithfulness to a world who needs to know that He lives, He loves, He cares. For His glory may you continually be renewed and refreshed with His love and truth!

  16. Thanks Emily for those inspirational words. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in February 2017. I have been thru chemo and surgery and about to begin radiation. I too thought now that I am at tail end that my life would magically pick right back up. But have found I am not bouncing back as quick. So your message was right on time. God strengthens us in our weakest moments. He is there as long as we cast our burdens upon him and teust in this process of healing physically, mentally, and emotionally. This message was a God sent today.

  17. Dear Emily, Frances, A, Wanda, Cassandra and others,
    Praise God for the immense strength He has given you during these times! May Jesus walk with you and help you reach out in trust for healing, courage and hope. May He bring the resources you need to have a viable life. Amen.

    I am learning to give it all to God, letting Jesus take my burdens and trusting He will lead me to more dependence on Him and less on myself. I am sooo thankful for all the Christian blogs I receive from “faith filled” ladies, who keep reminding us Whose we are and where we need to put our focus. Their scripture references are a blessing too. 🙂

    Shalom, Sandy

  18. Thank you so much for your perspective this morning, Emily. Oh, how I needed to remember this…that being needy is a good thing. My own struggles seem to revolve around loneliness as I am an army wife with two little ones to take care of. Soon my husband will be deployed, and I am left with a numb feeling…I don’t really feel anything which is frustrating because when people ask how I’m doing I feel rather at a loss to try and explain it. Yet your post makes me realize even this is God’s way of pressing me close to Him for I don’t even know how I feel, but surely He does. He knows what’s going on in the depth of my heart when all seems so cold and numb inside. Thank you for sharing, and may the Lord continue to sustain you by His wondrous grace!!

  19. Emily,

    Praying for renewed strength. We all have “thorns in our sides” at various points in our lives. We need to keep our focus on Jesus & He will bring us through these trials in His perfect timing. My belief is that God allows trials to bring us closer to Him. I know it has worked in my life. I dealt with many major medical issues-including dementia- of my aged dad. There were some good days & some bad. I felt stressed out & a little depressed. Through it all I clung to Jesus & prayer. He saw me through it to the very end when He lovingly took my dad home.

    Blessings 🙂