You may have seen the update on CaringBridge. Moving forward, we will have more updates specifically about Anna’s health on that site. I will use my blog in the coming weeks to do my best to communicate our spiritual journey through this unknown season. For now, see the bottom of this post or CaringBridge for Anna’s health update. Here is where Anna (we) are experiencing “real time” spiritually this Good Friday of Holy Week:
The most notable Gospel story, by far, that keeps coming up over and over again these past three years for Anna is the Sick Woman.
Jesus went off with him, followed by large crowds jostling at his elbow. Among them was a woman who had a haemorrhage for twelve years and who had gone through a great deal at the hands of many doctors (or physicians), spending all her money in the process. She had derived no benefit from them but, on the contrary, was getting worse. This woman had heard about Jesus and came up behind him under cover of the crowd, and touched his cloak, “For if I can only touch his clothes,” she said, “I shall be all right.”
The haemorrhage stopped immediately, and she knew in herself that she was cured of her trouble. At once Jesus knew intuitively that power had gone out of him, and he turned round in the middle of the crowd and said, “Who touched my clothes?” His disciples replied, “You can see this crowd jostling you. How can you ask, ‘Who touched me?’”
But he looked all round at their faces to see who had done so. Then the woman, scared and shaking all over because she knew that she was the one to whom this thing had happened, came and flung herself before him and told him the whole story. But he said to her, “Daughter, it is your faith that has healed you. Go home in peace, and be free from your trouble.” (Mark 5:24-34)
This story resonates so deeply with Anna. As you picture and pray for Anna today perhaps you could see her hand in this beautiful rendering of the Gospel story below. Even in her weakened state Anna is reaching out her hand to touch the hem of her Savior’s garment. Join us as we pray in unison for physical healing through these dark days between Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
Friends and Family, (Actually just family, as we consider you part of our extended family)
We want to update you on Anna. She is not doing well. She has been steadily declining the past few months, and especially the past week. In spite of 18 months of consistent chemotherapy, her scan in January showed that the cancer has continued to spread to additional parts of her body.
So what does this mean? Put simply we are suffering. Anna is suffering physically and emotionally. The kids and I are suffering as well, along with her parents who moved to our neighborhood in January to help. And what does “forward” look like, we have no idea. We are doing our best to be surrendered to whatever God has, but we do ask that you continue to pray with us for Anna’s physical healing.
As I spoke with Anna this morning she said, “this is not lost on me that I am experiencing this level of suffering during Holy Week, especially on Good Friday. Jesus suffered so much! Jesus understands my pain and He is suffering with me, as me, in these dark hours.” One of the beautiful graces of God in the past few days has been how Anna has seen herself more and more in different Gospel accounts, specifically the paralytic man being lowered through the roof. Know that she sees each of you as the friends who are lowering her through the roof to the feet of Jesus right now.