Found By Grace: Becca Clarke
I am really delighted to be able to share this post from Becca: it's a testimony that has encouraged and inspired so many people already, and completely shows dependence on God's faithfulness even in the most difficult of times. I am confident you will be encouraged by Becca sharing with us today. L x
Earlier this year I was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma, a type of cancer, and had to go through chemotherapy to get rid of it. I am very lucky to be out the other side and stronger for it.
It is hard when something like cancer comes into your life, in whatever form, to turn to God first - but that is precisely what we should do. God knows everything we are going through and will go through, and His love and comfort is what will get us through the tough times.
God even sent his son Jesus Christ to take the ultimate punishment and suffering that we all deserve. Jesus died on the cross for our sins which means that we don’t have to take God’s punishment. We can live with God in Heaven forever if we trust in Jesus. But this shows that God knows and has been through suffering himself, He knows your pain and is hurting with you.
The day after I got my diagnoses I went to a prayer and praise evening with the college CU and that was it was another reminder that all I needed to do was to look up at God and feel His almighty power. Singing to God felt so good, to let it out to someone who knows best, God.
I don’t think I can describe the way chemo made me feel.
I managed to go to school the day after chemo and I think that really helped me as it was something to distract my mind. I would have been a lot worse if I neglected my studies as I needed something to use my time and there was no reason to not go in to school.
It was on my 4th chemo when it was the worst, the sickness which I had thankfully not felt before kicked in and it is something I have never felt before and hope not to feel again. Thankfully, I managed to scrape myself to school the next day and distract myself from the worst.
After the 2nd cycle and 4th chemo, I had another PET scan and I was very lucky that there was no sign of cancer in my body! Thank you God! I was glad that the chemo was doing something. I then had a choice between radiotherapy or chemotherapy, and no human knows which is best.
God did know what was right for me thankfully and all I had to do was listen to him.
I had got it in my head that I didn’t want to do chemo as it was so horrid and I told my doctor this, however the long term risks of radio made me take a step back. Over the next weekend God worked in my heart and mind to make me see that chemo at this stage was the better option for me.
Having had a week away from chemo and my treatment, my head cleared and I saw that the pain now is worth the long term less painful future. So I had one more cycle of chemo and the first chemo was fine but the 2nd chemo was the worst day of my life. There is nothing worse that knowing that there is no drug to help with the pain as it is the drugs causing the pain in the first place, all I could do was try not to cry. I was so glad when it was over but it will be a long time before all the effects wear off.
“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.”
It was very important to remember Romans 8:18, that the suffering in this world is nothing in comparison to the amazing joy of the heaven and new creation that we will be living in for eternity. This life is so short that it is worth all the suffering for the life with God in heaven for eternity. Why worry about this life’s sufferings when something incomprehensibly amazing is coming our way?
“When you pass through the waters I will be with you and when you pass though the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned, the flame will not set you ablaze.”
This verse is a great reminder for me that God is always there every step of the way, even when I can’t always see this. God will always bring me through and make sure that no lasting harm will be done to me. The river will not sweep over and drown me because God is walking by my side and the fire won’t set me alight. I am thankful in my treatment that God was there because otherwise I would have struggled a lot more than I did.
“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful, he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.”
(1 Corinthians 10:13)
I should always remember this verse. God is not just passively looking down on me: God is suffering with me and not wanting it to happen any more than I do. He also only lets me suffer what He think I can endure. So when I can’t see a way to get through, I just need to remember that God has provided a way for me: I just have to look for it.
Remember: It is hard, and no one knows that more than God who sent his Son down to earth to suffer for our sins on the cross.
God is always there for you and always protecting you. He will never put you through anything that you can’t take, so always look for a way with him that you can endure it.
Becca has just started her second year as a sixth former in Cambridge. She studies double Maths, Chemistry and Physics and is hoping to go on to study engineering at university next year. Becca is excited to be part of a small team leading small groups at the college CU this coming year.