Sunday, August 7, 2016

Anniversary Thanksgivings!

Serving the Lord with Gladness

Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth! Serve the Lord with gladness! Come into his presence with singing! (Psalm 100:1-2 ESV)

As I read this verse, I recall early August of 1987 when I was diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer. I was emotionally numb, awakening from surgery to this startling news. The following day, after a sleepless night, a stirring turned me to a flicker deep within. I whispered, “Lord, help me. My eyes are upon you.” 

I had a deep encounter with the Lord, who came gently with his still small voice. He had to reveal to me what I was feeling. Each emotion was addressed and counsel given. I later realized that He had personally taken me through the first part of Scripture’s 2 Chronicles 20. Therein, Jehoshaphat and the people of Judah are awaiting enemy armies that totally outnumber them. Feeling powerless, they turn to the Lord for help.

He tells them not to be afraid:

 For the battle is not yours, but God’s . . . You will not have to fight this battle . . . stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you . . . Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you.” (2 Chronicles 20:15, 17)

I relaxed knowing I could confidently face my overwhelming enemy.

The rest of that Scripture has Jehoshaphat instructing his people to go forth to meet the armies, singing praises to God. This became my stance during my months of chemotherapy treatments.

The people of Judah and I experienced victory over a beaten foe.

As to the above psalm’s verses?

I came to recognize more deeply that I serve a faithful God. He continues to uphold me as I face challenges, some lasting years beyond the cancer diagnosis and triumph.

He reminds me very often that the enemy is beaten.
 I am not.

He is worthy to be served and praised. He first served me as Savior. Now I serve him with a spirit of joy, gladness, and song because He has shown me that is how one celebrates knowing the Lord is the One securing the victories. 

Lord, help me to continue to make a joyful noise, praising you. Your faithfulness is known, received, cherished, and everlasting. Amen. 

Excerpt from Lynn's devotional book, 

Seeking the Light of God's Comforter
When Challenges Dim Our View, 

due for publication late Fall, 2016


  1. Lynn,
    How I so look forward to and love reading your blog posts. I have been facing a bit of discouragement mentally and emotionally from the affects of my own cancer treatment so I am so glad that God "nudged" you to write this post - you have no idea what wonderful timing it was. Congratulations to you, my friend on such a blessed anniversary. Next month will be 23 years for me, so I guess you could say we are "anniversary neighbors!" I could not imagine such a journey and the fear, pain, and emotional struggles that go along with it (I cannot remember mine). To have such a strong faith as you do and such a positive outlook on things is truly inspiring. These scriptures are also so divinely placed in this post for today. Thank you for your faith, obedience, genuine reflection of the love of God, Lynn. I, as well as I am sure many others, are truly gifted with your presence.
    Love to you,

    1. My Sweet Shelby -

      How warming your words are as they greet me this morning! If for no other reason than my own thanksgiving, that these reflections are of encouragement to you, makes me grateful I posted them.

      I know we have talked about the miracle of God’s victory in your battle, as an infant, with a rare childhood cancer. You are one of very few survivors which makes it a true hallmark that God’s plans for your life continue to unfold. I also know that the lingering effects that you live with can make the challenges now be, at times, overwhelming. How much I admire YOU!!! I have experienced your strong faith and perseverance. Surely they are gifts He instilled in you as you battled and He sustained you - without your awareness at that time.

      Truly, with these direct words to me that God internally spoke the day after my surgery, a lot lifted off, including the fear. It was his courage that accompanied me as I kept walking through the months afterward. I was able to keep teaching!! My students that year were the best of “caregivers” and became an angel choir. We took a lot of singing breaks for there were times I’d be feeling a bit “iffy” and my 3rd graders were always open to a song. I’d grab my guitar and the songs we’d sing were my prayers that this Scripture shares were to be the stance “facing the enemy”. They helped me “sing him away”.

      We are “anniversary neighbors” - one more beautiful connection I now know we share. The timing of your gift of the “heart mug” was perfect as a tangible gift for my anniversary! I took the photo of my open Bible right before I took the photos of the mug that I sent to you.

      How precious you are!!

      Much Love,

  2. "He reminds me very often that the enemy is beaten.
    I am not."
    These are such encouraging words, regardless of what we're facing. We can be assured that we have the victory. I'm so glad that you've risen above your challenges through the years, Lynn, and share what you've learned with us.

    1. Thank you, Lisa. The challenges seem to be a part of each of our lives. Knowing God walks with us through them is always the best focus.
      xo Lynn

  3. Grateful to read this encouraging post late on a Sunday night. It blessed my heart!

    1. Rosemary, I am glad you found encouragement in this posting - and were blessed! Surely you can see how blessed I was. (( Hugs )) Lynn

  4. Such a reminder Thankyou Encouraging and inspiring.

    1. Susan - such a joy to have you stop by and leave this comment.
      It encourages and inspires me!!
      xo Lynn

  5. What a beautiful, special & encouraging post Lynn! I absolutely love the verses from 2 Chronicles 20 & have clung to them myself in some very challenging times. What I especially loved was: "He had to reveal to me what I was feeling. Each emotion was addressed and counsel given." How incredible that God took you through each emotion.... Wonderful Counselor Almighty God. LOVE the photo too!! God bless. LOTSoluv Kerryn PS. Great to read your comment about singing with the children in your class. What a gift to you & to them.

    1. Kerryn - it was indeed a very deep experience and, obviously, will never leave me. There is a lot more that happened but for this devotional, I kept to the basics. Wonderful Counselor! The photo is not the one in the book but one I took just for this blog post. I had bought some flowers to "celebrate" and felt strongly to show the Bible page (all marked up from other times over these years), as well. And my students!! Need I say more? You know what joy they brought along those months.

      xo Lynn


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