An Unexpected Turn
AN UNEXPECTED TURN
By Cher Rowbotham
My journey started four years ago when my husband Keith of 20 years got a cancerous brain tumor. It turned my world upside down. I didn’t know what hit us. Through the next four years, we had numerous doctor appointments, monthly tests and scans, radiation, chemo therapies, drug trials, two brain surgeries and lots of learning and growing. The amount of help and support I needed was intense.
I struggled at first to let people help. I eventually relied a lot on the help and support of others, but the relationship I had with God was the most dear to me. I felt His love and comfort the entire time we went through the fight with cancer. What I didn’t expect was what happened when Keith had passed away.
After I lost Keith, I felt so lost and so far from God. I still was praying, but didn’t know what to pray for. Keith didn’t need me praying and fighting for him anymore. I needed new direction.
A new purpose and journey.
So when a friend asked if I wanted to be part of a small Bible study group to learn about that different names of Christ and what they meant, I knew this was it. With the loss of Keith and it being Christmas time, it was just what I needed. I had something to listen to and study every day! It was a lifesaver. It showed me how to study and I felt the Spirit constantly as I listened to the online daily devotionals that corresponded with the study and wrote a ton in my workbook. I used it as a journal to thank my Heavenly Father for all the blessings I had been given.
Not only was my personal study enhanced, but I was able to come together with women sharing their thoughts on Christ. We call our group “the seedlets” and we meet once a week to discuss what we studied from the Bible study guide . I was still very emotional, so I didn’t talk much at our small group. Sometimes I just soaked it all up and listened to what normal life was like and how I I felt I should be. I had been a cancer fighting wife–it was who I was for so many years and I needed some examples of a woman in Christ, which these ladies provided. Each of them also had things in their lives causing pain and stress and they were using this time to study the Bible as part of their healing process.
We all have stuff that brings us down, that hurts us, or that we struggle with and sometimes we have the same yucky feelings even though the trials are very different. These friends of mine got me through a really depressing time and helped me turn to Christ and enjoy life.
Our small group tries to do a service project with each new bible study. It’s our way of implementing the principles we are learning in the Bible in our everyday life. Since it was Christmas time when I joined, they decided to do the 12 days of Christmas for me! The gifts were meaningful, fun, and special, but they took it a step further by trying to do it secretly. I have a camera on my doorbell so they had to get creative. It became hysterical as they dressed up, rang the doorbell, and ran away. The disguises got funnier and funnier as the days went on. I almost looked forward to the delivery more than the gift. They knew this was a very sad time for me and added laughter and love to my life daily.
They will never know how special and meaningful it was to me. I am so grateful to their examples of love and support. I have tried to emulate their Christlike examples going forward. I know God relies on us to do His work here on earth. By studying the scriptures daily and listening to the online daily devotionals, I felt the Spirit every day and it made a world of difference. I would like to make this a lifetime goal– to never stop studying with my workbook, listening to the daily devotionals, and meeting with my friends.