day 20 (in review) // beauty in reading.

2o chemotherapy treatments already.

??!!

That doesn’t even seem possible, or like that number matches up to the dates, to the past 4 months of my life. Where did all of that medicine go? Where did all of that time go?

20 seems like a lot. And yet, there are still more to come. This is only the autumn of treatments and have yet to hibernate into chemo winter, wake up for more medicine bud spring and see life in the summer.

Only 20? Really?

Sigh.


I’ve been rediscovering why I love to read, why I signed up to be an English major that fall of 2009–

When you read, you’re alone but not alone. Here is someone else, right next you, in written-word form, directly speaking to you. Telling you her story, her thoughts, what she sees, what she believes.
When I read, I don’t feel lonely. There is another human prescence, even though I physically don’t see the skin, the face, the hands, I still am hearing the voice, the soul.

This is human connection.
This is readership.

(How did I forget this beauty?)

My reading list is long:
Celebrate Sarcoma
Survivor in Pink
A Thousand Gifts
Walking with God in Pain and Suffering

My companions are therefore plentiful:
Mary Connolly
Vivian Mabuni
Ann Voskamp
Timothy Keller

I read and listen to their voices and am surrounded by insight that I need at just the right time, or a hand wrapped in ink now holding mine, or they sometimes surprise me, pick me up off of my couch and lead us both to mirrors of ourselves.

And it dawns on me: this is why God gave us His Word.
I can never physically be with Him here on this earth, as I could do so with the aforementioned authors. But I do feel His prescence as I read His Words, there is comfort as I read, guidance, insight, understanding, and yes, even mirrors–

james 1

22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

My compact lavendar leather Bible affords me not only His Prescence but I’m realizing of also my friends. It is my scrapbook of insights. Throughout my Bible, ink and lead highlight and underline verses that friends have directed me to:

Circled: Psalm 34      from: Megs       date: 10-9-2014, a day close to end of treatment week, closer to fatigue, of energy waning
Circled: Psalm 37      from: Jake        date: 6-25-2014, the day after receiving a call that would change my life again for the third time
Circled: Psalm 130   from: Kendra   date: 9-19-2013, a day when depression was deep, deep that summer.

Yes, my Bible is a scrapbook of insights, reminders of when the Spirit moved my friends to direct me to these Words and of the instances surrounding them. And yet, even though my friends are not physically with me now as  I read these verses–and they weren’t with me there physcially the dates listed either–they were still there with me and are with me now as I read the Word. This is how the Word and the Body works! Even when I am in the hospital room or in my bedroom, when I open to these words, I am not alone: I am among Him and my friends there alongside me. I can hear their voices as they read the scripture to me. What a joy for when I am missing them! The connection He brings forth! Reminders of my friends, reminders of grace, reminders of love, all present here through reading words, the Word. The Word rising off the page, swirling, embodying the Presence and Love.

(Oh yes, how did I forget this beauty in reading?)

 

 

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