Where have I been? Well, let's see. I went to Florida for a week to visit my parents. As I get older, I've come to realize how precious time is with them, because they are getting older, too.
Almost two years ago I got an unexpected call from my dad. His cancer was back, and this time it was inoperable. The doctor gave him about a year. Needless to say, time suddenly became very precious. I won't forget what he asked me to do when he first told me. "Pray that I don't lose my faith."
Dad persevered through some pretty rough experimental treatments. He lived most of that first year as if he were coming down with a severe flu due to the experimental treatment. Then the question came. Is it worth it?
He said no. His quality of life had gone down so far. He wouldn't continue treatment, unless he found another method. Which he did, thank goodness.
While I was in Florida last week, he got the latest report for his last round of tests, which seemed to even surprise the doctor. The tumors were the same size but the density had dropped. The doctor could only surmize that the tumors were dying.
This was his news to me as I got off the plane just over a week ago. I won't forget that moment. Nor what I said.
For those of you who have prayed for my dad, my deepest gratitude and thanks flow forth. I know prayer has been key in his healing and this latest treatment. He does suffer some side effects, but as Dad says, "It's a small price to pay."
Dad didn't lose his faith. If anything, I see Christ in him even stronger. He prayed over our meal once when I was there and when he said the word "Jesus," it sounded like love ought to sound. Dad's not a man of many words, but in that moment, he said a lot.
I can only imagine what he's gone through this last year. He told me he never believed the doctor when he told Dad he had a year. Dad never gave up hope. Nor his faith.