Saturday, November 22, 2014

letting go

About six weeks ago, I was on a work trip and landed in the ER due to some severe pain I was experiencing. That night, I found out that I had a tumor the size of a softball sitting on my left ovary, and that's why I was in so much pain. The ER doctor said to follow up with my doctor at home, but that surgery was the fix. He said from what he could see, everything was benign - praise the Lord!

After wrapping up three more events, including my biggest one of the year last weekend, I had surgery on Monday. I honestly struggled with a lot of anxiety over this upcoming surgery over the last few weeks. When I saw my doctor in Nashville, she told me that in addition to removing the tumor, they were going to have to remove my left ovary. Not what I wanted to hear. In that moment, my first response was, "Are you kidding me?? I'm 30 and single, but I want to be a wife and a mom. You're going to take out half of my chances of getting pregnant someday??"

I got in my car and bawled like a baby, but the Lord spoke so tenderly to my heart in that moment and gave me this reminder: "Mary Margaret, do you think this caught me by surprise?"

No, it didn't.

It's easy to say that He's sovereign, but when life happens and things don't go the way we expected them to, we have to live it out. What would be the point of faith if it wasn't ever tested?

There are a number of things in my life right now that are totally outside of my control. My flesh wants to try to grasp ahold of anything I can to try and get some control back, but I've just had to let go. I'm good at holding myself together and being strong until I just hit the wall where I can't do it anymore. I hit the wall on a few things this week, and while it's hard, it's such a relief to let go and allow God to do the part that only He can do.

It's hard to be vulnerable, but it's a part of really living in community with one another. It's easier to say that everything's okay and that I'm doing fine, but it's not the truth. It means giving up control and allowing other people to see me when I'm hurting and in a raw place, which is hard. I'd much rather have people see me handling things well and being strong, but who is that helping?

All that to say, I trust the Lord more than I trust myself. Through all of this, he's doing a new work in me. It's not easy, and often not fun, but I'm just putting one foot in front of the other and taking it one day at a time.
"Remember not the former things, not consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert." Isaiah 43:18-19

Saturday, February 01, 2014

Running for Bennett


A few months ago, my friend Mickey asked me if I would run the Nashville Country Music Half Marathon with her. After I laughed for awhile, I realized that she was being serious. This is what flew through my mind:
I'm not a runner.
I'm not athletic.
I'm not even sure that I can run for a solid 2 minutes.
I can't do it.

After praying about it, I told her I would run with her. I'm pretty sure at this point, I thought I had lost my mind. Over the last few weeks, I've been looking for a "reason" to run. One thought was to tell myself it's something that I should do before I turn 30 (about 2 weeks after the race). Another thought was to lose weight and get in shape (which is a huge motivator). At the end of the day, none of it felt like enough for me to push through 13.1 miles on April 26.

My brain keeps telling my body "you can't do this..." or maybe vice versa, depending on the day.

Right before Christmas, my sweet friends Ben and Megan Coleman were given a piece of news that no parents ever want to hear - Bennett has a tumor on his liver. Bennett is 19 months old and is at St. Jude Children's Hospital in Memphis, and he's going to be there for awhile. He's already in his second round of chemotherapy, and his parents are trading off being with him in Memphis and being with their other two kiddos (Davis and Reide) in Lafayette, Louisiana.

I kept asking the Lord for a reason bigger than myself to run, and he gave it to me in the form of a precious baby boy. Every time I don't want to wake up and run, I'm going to remember that I'm running for Bennett. When my feet and legs start hurting and I'm just not sure I can do it, I'm going to picture Bennett fighting for his life, and I'm going to keep running.

I recently found out that the half marathon is a St. Jude Children's Hospital race and you can run as a St. Jude Hero and raise money for all of the kids who are receiving treatment at St. Jude.

I'm running for Bennett.

Here's where you come in...

  • More than anything, would you pray with me for Bennett and his family? I'm praying for complete healing for this sweet boy. Will you commit to pray with me? If you want to read his story and see updates, visit www.just30days.orgBen and Megan have been dear friends for a long time - we've served 2 churches together, and they were like family to me when we all lived in Austin. I'm so grateful for how they are walking this out with incredible faith and grace. 
  • My goal is to raise $500 for St. Jude Children's Hospital - they make sure that no family ever has to pay for treatment. Would you consider supporting me as I run for Bennett? You can visit http://heroes.stjude.org/marymargaretc to make a donation to St. Jude.
Thanks for your encouragement as I run for Bennett!