and she will be like a tree

In my last post, I asked you to remember the Slavens family during Jonathan’s (the husband) surgery.

Here’s in update, in Martha’s (the wife) words:

Thank you so much for your continued prayers. We praise the Lord that the doctors were able to remove all of the tumors in Jonathan’s stomach and most of the tumor in his neck after 12 hours of surgery. The cancer was much more wide spread in his stomach than the CT scan showed so it was a bit of a surprise to all of us. The tumor in his neck was not completely removed due to possible damage to important nerves. We were praying that the residual tumors were only scar tissue, but God has a different story for us to tell. The tumor in his neck came back positive with cancer still growing. The down side is that we will be going through more chemo in the months to come, but I am so excited to see what God is going to do through us.

Whenever I start to get a little down about what we still have to overcome I am reminded of many verses to help keep my focus on Christ. Right now my brain is so fuzzy that there is not much of anything left except a silent plea for sleep. My desire is not to leave you with a message of hopelessness, but of great peace and abundant hope. I just wish my brain were in gear enough to remember those verses. The long hours are really starting to catch up with me. I leave you knowing that my God will sustain us with His presence and no mountain is too big for Him to move – however he sees fit to move it!

Jeremiah 17:7-8

Blessed is she who trust in the LORD and whose trust is the LORD. For she will be like a tree firmly planted by the water, that extends its roots by a stream and will not fear when the heat comes; but its leaves will be green, and it will not be anxious in a year of drought nor cease to yield fruit.

Israel is a dry country. The picture Jeremiah paints here is not of a lush, green land near a gentle stream with a beautiful vibrant tree. It is a picture of a dry creek bed where the actual creek is running below the surface. For a tree to survive and flourish here requires deep, deep roots. This tree doesn’t fear the heat or the drought; it has a sufficient water source. In times of stress, the tree remains green with life and yields fruit.

Our sweet Martha is such a strong tree. She’s rooted deep to the living water that is our Christ. I have seen her grow and give glory to God, time and time again. Does it mean she doesn’t have moments of fear, worry, or doubt? Absolutely not! But time and time again she has turned her eyes back to Christ and drawn from Him.

Please continue to pray for this family. The road ahead is long and hard.


One thought on “and she will be like a tree

  1. I don’t know what to say – wow. If you could have seen me yesterday you would have seen the falling apart struggling to see God in all of this Martha not the one you talked about. All I can say is God is ever faithful and never gives up on us. It took a little while for the truths to get from my head to my heart and by the grace of God I got there again. Thank you so much for your prayers – they are truly what is holding me together.

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