Monday, October 25, 2010

Good Morning, Brain Tumor Central

Warning: the following post is intensely personal. Read at your own risk of learning more about the author than you might be ready to know…


Answering Service: Good Morning, Brain Tumor Central.

Me: Hi. Am I going to get a brain tumor?

AS: I’m sorry, what did you say? The line is full of static.

Me: Will I get a brain tumor?

AS: I can’t answer that question for you. Only God can. In His time. Should I transfer you?

Me: No. Not yet.

AS: Excuse me, mind if I ask why you’re asking me that?

Me: I was talking with one of my sisters on the phone the other day. She’s a nurse and we got to talking about how many people in our family have had brain tumors.

AS: Which family is this?

Me: My maiden name is Paine.

(sound of flipping through stacks of paper)

AS: Oh, right. Yes. We know of that family here. Paine is in bright red.

Me: Figures.

AS: Says here your sister was diagnosed with a malignant tumor, an astrocytoma twenty years ago. It also says she’s still alive.

Me: Yes.

AS: Also indicates your grandmother had one. And you recently found out your father had one too.

Me: After his stroke, yes. The MRI revealed it.

AS: That does seem like quite a few. And I guess there’s question about your aunt. Didn’t do tests like that back then, but her history suggests that it could have been possible. (Long exhale) How is it that I can help you today?

Me: I guess I was curious whether you could tell me if my name is on that list.

AS: No can do. Sounds like this is going to be your thing.

Me: What thing?

AS: We all have a thing. Most of us have many things.

Me: What are you talking about?

AS: A thing we need to hand over to God.

Me: How can I hand it over if it hasn’t happened yet—if I don’t even know if it’s going to happen?

AS: It’s possible. You’ll have to figure that one out.

Me: You can’t give me any clues.

AS: Nope. But you’re welcome to call us back at any time.

Me: I don’t think I’ll call back.

AS: No?

Me: Neh, I have a more important call to make.

Ever call someplace and then it hits you there’s a direct line with a better connection?
*photo by flickr
**fictitious account with real history and fear


  1. Wendy - I often think all my answers can be found on Google. Then I remember I know Who created the person who created Google. Go figure... :)

  2. Yeah, that has happened to me on more than one occasion.
    I do think we all have "things" in our lives that we can't go to anyone but God with.

  3. I have a need for control, and wanting to know NOW. Giving all over to God and patiently waiting for when He tells me to move isn't easy in our society where doing and stress are almost glorified. Nice post Wendy.

  4. powerfully conveyed. thanks for that reminder. :)

  5. Thanks for the reminder to turn my "thing" over to the Lord.

  6. Thank you for sharing. Thanking God for His peace in every question and worry in our lives. :O)

  7. Oh Wendy, I love this. There's not a person on the planet who hasn't made that call and wrestled with fear...particularly when it's something over which we have no control. Now I know why you left me the comment you did over at my blog. :)

    Can I pray for you? "Father, I lift Wendy to you, and in the name of Jesus I take authority over every generational curse. I plead the blood of Jesus over her brain, her children's brains and her husband's brain. I declare that no weapon formed against them will prosper. I thank you, God, that you have GOOD plans for Wendy. Plans for her hope and for a future. But mostly, Lord, thank you for being faithful and utterly trustworthy. Thank you for your loving kindness towards Wendy. Bless her and calm her fears. Encourage her by the power of Your Holy Spirit. In the wonderful name of Jesus, Amen."

  8. You have a way of sharing and I appreciate it. You have made a worthy point here. We all have that thing we worry about, whether and illness (all 12 of my mothers' sisters and brothers have died of cancer and now she has it, and my sister has it) or financial worries or anything. I tend to worry way more than I should and should spend that time taking it to the One who cares.

  9. LOVE LOVE LOVE. Yes, I have many "things". This is a great illustration. Thank you for this!!!

  10. This ties in so beautifully with the Bible study I was at last night. (Isn't it cool how God works those kinds of things out?)

    We were studying Psalm 91. God not only promises to be our protection, hiding us under His wings, but He also promises to hear and to answer when we call on Him.

    Doesn't get any better than that. :)

  11. Wendy...this is an AWESOME post and so aptly timed that I know there is only ONE who could have lead me here today. Thank you so much for putting yourself out there.

  12. Oh, my dear. How I love you! My prayer is the same as Julie's.

    Thanks for letting us peek inside your soul.


  13. Love this post Wendy. I think God gives us those things, those "might be's" so that we'll put our faith and trust in Him.

    How easily I forget about that most important connection. Thanks for the reminder, girl!

  14. Oh, thank you Wendy, what a great reminder about our uncertain futures and WHO holds them.

  15. It's always better to take the direct route. Thanks for the reminder that I should be turning there more often.

  16. What a beautiful prayer Julie Gilles prayed for you! I second that. I was sick for many years and told I was probably not going to live past my mid twenties and I'm still going strong decades later! I still praise God for that every day!! My husband prayed for me and the disease left me. God has plans for me and He has plans for you. Everything is easy for Him. *hugs* I'm putting you down in my prayer journal. =)

  17. This is a great post with a gently powerful meaning. Thanks for sharing and the reminder of who we need to turn our problems and worries over to and trust.

  18. Hi Wendy -

    Thank you. This is a timely post.

    I've been praying about a certain matter, but got into a humongous worry mode this morning. A friend pulled me up short and pointed me to the Lord. Somehow, I forgot that through Him I have the victory.

    Susan :)

  19. Some discussions are just pointless. Going to the one true source is best. What would we do without His love and patience?

  20. I think most of us can understand this conversation, according to whatever worries plague us.

    Thanks for it -- very evocative and well-written, as usual.

  21. Love it. Yes, we all have a thing. Or two. My biggies are fear and patience. Lack of it.
    You know, I'm sure, that there are certain things in life we have absolutely no control over. This is one of them.
    So let the One who does have control do His thing, so you can let go of yours. :0)

  22. Oh.

    ...praying for you and yours today, Sweet Wendy.

  23. This is a great post. It's so easy to slip into worrying about the future, so easy to forget our direct line to the Father.

    Thanks for the reminder!!


  24. Wendy:
    God has all the answers. We have to trust Him for our very existence. IF we were honest, we would all have to say that we have some family history of some disease or disorder that keeps us on edge. But God can take care of our needs.
    Thank you for being so open about this.

  25. Yes, I do.

    This was beautifully written. Praying for you!

  26. wow..what a beautiful, powerful post. It's true though...we have a direct connection with God. We just need to use it more.

  27. Yep. I just was thinking about this because there's some kind of hereditary breast cancer in my family. Good stuff here! ;-)

  28. Blown away by your comments. Julie, your prayer reached in and grabbed my heart. I'm constantly reminded why I do this--why I risk and fling my thoughts out there. Thanks for swinging by and leaving the comments you did. They will stay with me. It's a crazy world we live in, full of unknowns. Tonight I feel an overwhelming gratitude we are able to have that direct line.

    And I thank Jesus for that!

    I'm warmed by your words.


  29. "I can do everything through Him." I actually posted an illustration about that yesterday on my blog. I'd be honored if you wandered over and took a look at it. (Nice blog, BTW)

  30. Love how you wrote this post. And that you were real. Thanks for sharing your heart with us. And thanks for the reminder...a direct line is such a gift and blessing.

  31. thanks for your honesty in this post. There are so many unknowns aren't there? But you are right! We are so blessed with that direct line. Praying that God would keep your heart at peace.

    thanks also for sharing your experience on my blog and leaving me such a kind comment.

  32. I love the way you wrote this, and the ending! Perfect!

    I'm sorry you have such a scary health risk in your family. I'll pray.

  33. There is no peace like casting your cares on Jesus.

  34. Wendy, that's is a scary thing to contemplate. But your final conclusion is the only one. ((hugs))

  35. What a clever way to broach this topic. Your humor and light touch carry it well.

    We all have our thing.

    Mine was chronic migraine which was disabling,then adult-onset asthma, then heart disease. But cancer, diabetes, and depression have all appeared in the family, too.

    It's a walk of faith all the way, isn't it?

    You might be very interested to read The China Study by Colin Campbell. A vegetarian diet changed it all for me. His book is a good introduction to some of the research on diet and cancer.

  36. Loved this.

    And I always love knowing more about the author. :D


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