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Ron’s Story

Ron PerryIn December 2014, Ron’s family doctor found a lump in his neck. After several weeks of tests, he was diagnosed with Lymphoma and began chemo treatments. The treatments were successful and the lump disappeared. Unfortunately, in December 2015, Ron struggled with tiredness and lack of appetite, similar to the symptoms he had with lymphoma. After a return to the MD, CT scan, and several tests, he was diagnosed with stage 3 unresectable pancreatic adenocarcinoma. Presently we know that there is a tumor at the head of the pancreas and it is inoperable because of its location on the artery. Thankfully, the cancer has not spread and is localized at the pancreas. We are hoping for positive results from chemotherapy but because he had lymphoma previously does not qualify for clinical trials.

A letter of encouragement

This is a letter written to a dear friend once diagnosed with breast cancer.  I post this as an encouragement to all male and female alike drafted into this Cancer Walk.  I encourage ALL to Put God in place of fear.
 
Dear…….
 
Your are God’s child and you are about to go on a journey that only you can testify about the graciousness of our Lord God.  No one asks to be a participant but are randomly inducted based on our fruit bearing obligation to Christ Jesus, in my opinion.
I’m reminded of the verse in Luke where Elizabeth is pregnant with child and her world view looked at it as a “disgrace.” God’s view was totally opposite. 
 
Luke 1: 24 After these days Elizabeth his wife became pregnant, 
and she kept herself in seclusion for five months, saying, 25 “This is the way the   Lord has dealt with me in the days when He looked with favor upon me, to take   away my disgrace among men.”
 
Look at the real truth revealed here by Jesus himself….
 
John 9: 3 Jesus answered, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents;   but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him.
 
IMG_2892I feel how we view our trials and tribulations say a lot about our level of faith we profess.  As believers, seasoned in the word, we are looked upon from many angles.  People watch to see how we react on every level.  It is our “unknown testimony” to onlookers from afar.  If they see we are weary, complain, and are completely devastated, their thoughts can lead to “what is the point in following Christ and see how he treats His followers.”  I’m saying this to say I’m here to help you in any way I can to fulfill your fruit-bearing during this time.  I’m honored to walk this journey with you and help to encourage you as the battle for your mind, body and spirit enters the valley of dry bones.  That is what I refer to as the lowest point of my process when my body was at its weakest.  It was there, at my lowest point, when I truly felt and saw what humility means.  I will not sugar coat the process to give you a false hope just to make things better.  I value you and I trust God’s divine knowledge for our lives and to question the situation means to question God and his omnipresence and His purpose in our lives.  I know this is overwhelming for you and this is where we allow Jesus to carry us through the hardest part.  I know, I had to live it just a few weeks ago my sister.  Your prognosis is good, your oncologist is amazing and your family rounds out the resilience you will need to endure.  I am your “Ride or Die Sister” and we shall see God’s glory manifest in you!
 
Although the Bible is already written and canonized, Jesus’ payer in the book of John speaks specifically to those who belong to him and to those who are left in this world after he departed that will believe in Him.  That is you and your sisters in Christ who are supporting  and praying for you day and night.
 
 John 15:15 “I do not ask You to take them out of the world, but to keep them from the evil one.
 16 “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
 17 “Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.
 18 “As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world.
 19 “For their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they themselves also may be sanctified in truth.
 20 “I do not ask on behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word;
 21 that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me.
 
 You are worthy of our prayers as you fight for your healing. Your worth coming from your relationship as God’s child and our relationship as His children.  Your worth also as a faithful, encourager and friend to all who come in contact with your spirit. Nothing can separate you from the love of Christ Jesus nor the love of those who are supporting you on this journey.
 
Let’s take hold of God’s promises one at a time and I want to start with this one…
 
Nothing can separate those who belong to the Father despite the trials we may face.
 
John 10:27 “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me;
 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will       snatch them out of My hand.
  29 “My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able  to snatch them out of the Father’s hand.
  30 “I and the Father are one.”

Mattie Pearl Todd

My name is Mattie Pearl Todd and I am a 63-year old African-American woman currently living in Somerset, New Jersey. I have two sons and five grandchildren. I have worked for a rehabilitation care center for the past 26 years helping other people recover from traumatic illness and injuries. I was diagnosed with breast cancer in the year of 2006. I underwent surgery on my breast and a portion of my breast was removed along with six lymph nodes. I underwent chemotherapy and radiation therapy for over six months. I returned to work in 2007 and worked through 2014 with no problems. I was very active in participating in cancer walks such as Susan G. Komen, The Sister Network, and Strive for a Cure. During that time, I was able to raise money for each walk as a way of me giving back to the cause and cure for cancer. I participated in the walks on an annual basis and recruited friends to participate and fund raising with me.

In January 2014, I began to have chest pains and was misdiagnosed. My cancer care physician who performed my surgery stated that I did not have cancer. So she recommended that I see a Cardiologist, and Optometrist and an ear, nose and throat specialist. It wasn’t until later in September 2014, that I went back to my Oncologist and he performed an extensive amount of tests. As a result, he discovered that I had Stage 4 bone cancer in my chest. After chemotherapy and more tests, they called it malignant neoplasm unspecified site of unspecified female breasts.

In May 2015, my job was outsourced and along with my health insurance was ended. I had to file for emergency Social Security Disability and Medicaid in order to have a source of income. My Oncologist had to release me from his care due to no health insurance. I then had to locate a new Oncologist. I am currently still receiving chemotherapy and my Oncologist stated I will always have this cancer and that there is no cure for it.

It has not been easy this time around living with cancer because it has affected me severely physically and financially. Each day has been a struggle but I am learning to live one moment at a time. I do not know what the future will hold but I do know who holds my future. I trust God through this entire process knowing this path is a testimony to all who watch me as a child of God.  Staying positive, resting, and “paying it forward” helps me encounter each day.  Life is short and I truly know how precious life really is. Taking time out to enjoy my grandchildren, family members, friends and my church family has also truly been a blessing. If there was a summary to my life it would be “Our birth is our gift from God and how we live our life before we die is our gift to God.”

How can we pray for you?  Pray for my body to respond to the treatments, the side-effects to diminish quickly and my family to all be strengthened in their walk with Christ.

Area of greatest need: It is Financial in order to keep my bills under control.  I’m divorced and things are really tight doing this by myself.  Thank you for asking and praying for me.