It's time for a final chapter on the Tumour-Saga... And an intro to a new Saga. The Health-Saga.
So many friends have asked why I stopped writing Tumour-Saga updates in February. I haven't had anything new to say. At least, not about the Tumour - the healing, the waiting, the family time, working again - it just kept rolling, like life does! But, I have had plenty to say on other topics, as my blog has demonstrated in a swelling bursting sort of way. I have done lots of writing and reworking of the blog. I hope you like it - and use it in your life and ministry.
But, seven months later, there are a few things to mention:
The six months to two years of recommended healing time has, mercifully, been a lot closer to the short end of the scale. I am much better - almost 100 per cent now! I still get tired easier and need more down time. But, that's healthier, anyway! I've become convinced the word "busy" is the worst four-letter word in our world today. Not because it's dirty but because it is destructive to families and devastating to personal spiritual, emotional and physical wellness.
I started working again in April. My employer, the Victorian Conference of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Australia, has been gracious beyond all expectation. They started me with a 50 per cent workload. I retained my role as Sabbath School Director and was asked to oversee the ministries happening at the Croydon Church. I had this workload until last month. In August, I was asked if I felt up to full-time work. I said yes and they asked me to assist Loren Pratt at Northpoint Church. My first day at Northpoint Church was amazing. Each of these three responsibilities has been enjoyable and inspiring.
Last October, when I went on sick-leave, I asked the Conference to employ Katherine Darroch to look after the Children's Ministry Department while I was away. Katherine is passionate about Children's Ministry at a local church and regional level and has willingly assisted me for years in many projects as a volunteer. Needless to say, Katherine did an amazing job for the six months of my absence. I knew she would SHINE!
I believe it is the primary task of every Christian leader to find, train and empower someone to replace them. For the last couple of years, I have been telling Katherine I would love to see her be the next Children’s Ministry Director in Victoria. She always laughed and said, “No Way!” Then I needed to take sick leave. God’s truly works in mysterious ways!
In April, when I began working again, I resigned my role as the Director of the Children's Ministry Department and recommended the Conference employ Katherine permanently, which they did – until the constituency meeting which meets this coming Sunday when all Conference leadership appointments come under review.
I do not believe God sends evil into our lives. however, I do believe He can use anything to expand the territory of His Kingdom if we are willing to participate in His work and allow Him to be glorified. His ways are beyond measure or understanding!
While I wouldn’t wish a brain tumour on anyone, it has been a blessing and an honour to go through this experience with you. I have come to know myself, my family and my God so much better as I journeyed through mountains and valleys over the past year. I wouldn't give it back for anything!
Over the past two months, I have transitioned the Tumour Saga to the next phase. My doctor has advised and challenged me that to become truly healthy, I need to loose a substantial amount of weight. So, I have started. Nearly two months ago, I commenced my One Year Lifestyle Commitment.
During the next 10 months, I am going to tell you all about it. Blogging my way through the Tumour Saga was cathartic and created camaraderie. While it was hard at first, it became a task I truly enjoyed. Funnily enough, this next year is going to be quite a bit harder for me to talk/blog about. But, having received so much positive feedback from my previous transparency, I will try!
Since the final week of July, when I made my one-year lifestyle commitment, I have lost 10 kilograms. I am aiming to loose a lot more before the year is over.
More on ‘the one-year lifestyle commitment’ in my next post.