Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Christmas Picture

I'll start with the easy part.  In past years we've often sent out a Christmas card or picture and some details of what's been happening.  We figured this year that there's too much to report from the year, and most of you have been following it anyway, so we don't need a letter.  We decided to post a picture on the blog of our family that we just took Sunday.  Hopefully that will suffice for everyone.  I'm sure a few won't see it, but if we were to send out cards, it would take many hundreds of them to reach everyone we know and the many new friends we made this year.

On the health front, I'm still waiting to get in with the local doctor and get started on the Temodar.  I call every day to see if they've received the info, etc.  You know how local medicine goes, it's not the same as Mayo.

I wanted to share with everyone what a blessing it was on Sunday to spend time in church.  The last couple weeks has been hard.  I feel myself wear out more quickly, and I'm less able to do things around the house for Leann.  It's hard on me, I'm used to working hard and getting a lot done.  Once again I realized (for the umpteenth time) that I was focusing on the future instead of the day at hand.  I was violating Christ's instruction "don't worry".  As I talked with others Sunday, I was open and just shared what I had been feeling, and I just felt a lot of encouragement from others.  The minister mentioned being in a meeting with someone using crutches who had a small cross on his belt.  He asked the man why he wore the cross and was told it was to remind him that he needed God more than the crutches, and he should give thanks for God  giving him cancer.  This just really touched me.  I'm still walking without a walker or cane but I'll have to admit I've thought about getting one a time or two.  I could just identify with this man.  And I realized, yes, I do have much to be thankful for.  I can sit and lay down without pain.  I can sleep through the night.  I can still be with my family and go to work.  So even though it's slow eating and slow walking, I still have lots to be thankful for

Thanks to everyone for the prayers we have felt in the last week.  It is really appreciated and has given us much strength.

Derek & Leann

What I'm Learning from Cancer #10
Share – be willing to open up.  This might find you disagreeing with me, as this one seems to be culturally difficult for many around us.  But, I think there are a couple reasons why we have felt so much support and so many prayers for so long.  First, I am young, I have a young family, so I understand others will worry about us more than they would an older person in need.  The second reason I feel is that we have been very open about what we are going through both medically, as well as spiritually and emotionally.  Because of this, others know what to pray for very specifically.  It is more difficult to pray for someone when you know very little of what to pray for.  So I think because we shared on our blog what was happening, we received more prayers.  The other reason I say to be open is that when I look back at my life, how I responded to Leann or the kids at different times, I wish I had close friends that I could have asked for detailed advice.  We had rough spots in our marriage that could have been easier if I had been more humble, willing to share a few details, and ask for some help.  James 5:16  Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed.  The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.  We’ve been open with the world.  How many people you are open with will depend upon the situation at hand. Some problems are harder to share, and maybe not appropriate to share.  But at least be really open with a few people who will be able to help you.  And in general, be open with more people than you are today.  I think we are too private of a people in general.


  1. beautiful family! We pray for you every week and are so thankful for these updates.

  2. Beautiful famiy picture !!! We think of you guys often and continue to pray for your family!!!
    Merry Christmas !!!
    Ben,Steph and girls

  3. Pray for and think of you guys often! Love your family picture!

    Becky (&Ryan)