Six months ago following a routine mammogram, I was told those shocking words…”You have breast cancer.”

What? I’ve been focused on health and nutrition for years, an avid runner, emotionally healthy, how can this happen to me?

But alas, the journey began. Given the very public journey our family walked while our beloved son Jordan was battling cancer, we decided to do this one privately, in hopes that when it was over, we could share the story and victory all in one moment.

That moment was yesterday, when in a morning message at our church, King’s Park, I shared the “Shock and Awe” message about navigating the valley, out to a place of healing.

Here is a link to the 30 minute podcast, if you’d like to hear more.

Shock and Awe

This message highlights the faithfulness of our great God, the one who delivers us through life’s shocks, and brings awe every time.

I could not have endured this battle without the strong support of my amazing husband, parents, sister, daughter-in-law Cady who was living with us and stood by my side every moment, our sons and their wives who cheered and prayed, and closest friends who pray unceasingly every time we face a need.

I’d also like to recognize friends who have walked this path before and whose inspiration of overcoming helped me tremendously during some of the darkest hours: Ami Dockery, Carol McLeod, Holly Wagner, Christine Caine, Lisa Bevere, Darlene Zschech, Jan Greenwood, Lisa Clark, Renette Kendall, Kirsten LaCourse, Starr Clay, and Fran Boyd.

Today I am through this battle, onto even greater health, looking forward to a long life of fulfilling adventures and purpose fulfilled.

 

 

 


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I had the great honor of being selected to do a TEDx Talk, and am excited to announce it’s official release this week!

If you know anyone who could use a fresh infusion of hope, then this may be a timely link to share. The talk is titled, “My Dream Died, Now What?”

It was a rigorous process to apply and then be selected out of hundreds of applicants and a tough set of coaches and peers evaluating every step of the way. But I honestly LOVED it, and am deeply honored for this chance to share my life story in just under 12 minutes.

The audience laughed, cried, and stood to their feet in applause at the surprise ending, a moment I was humbled by and will never forget.

TED Talks are showcased around the world, and if you find this one worth sharing, I’d be so grateful if you would post to your social media and help us spread this message of hope and courage for anyone struggling through a dream, or enduring a season of waiting.

Thank you for being a fellow believer in the power of a dream!

 




We’ve heard from some of our community that the emails we send out daily did not reach everyone. Here are the recent videos in case you missed yours via email. Many more to come daily throughout the rest of February.



Sometimes it’s so hard to maintain hope when setbacks and roadblocks happen on the path to our dreams. Here’s a little 2 min. video with a couple of ideas for staying your course and not losing hope. (Includes video clips of the twins, found this in my drafts folder and the twins have grown since this taping but thought you’d enjoy it nonetheless.)


I’m sure you have noticed my blog posts are rare these days, with growing twin babies and adjustments in our family, seldom are the moments to focus on writing!

But I’m on a flight alone right now, headed to speak in Minneapolis, and just answered a letter written via my website by a young mother who is also going into the military soon. She asked about how I balance stress, deal with criticism, and stay positive. Thought perhaps my thoughts shared with her would encourage you as well, so here goes (and please excuse formatting issues with run-on paragraphs)…

Dear Shari (not her name)
Your questions are so valid, and very real for most of us. BTW, congrats on entering the military, what a noble calling and one I’m sure you will find adventurous and a challenge yet rewarding too. Even more than this congrats on the birth of your precious baby, wow, your most noble calling to date. I can only imagine how little sleep you are getting which doesn’t help on the issues of balance and stress you mention either!
Coping with stress and pressures will always be a challenge. Sometimes we get more breathing room but it comes in moments vs. days or long seasons, from what I’ve experienced. Nowadays I try to grab these precious moments of alone time, be it out on a morning jog, or even just moments of quiet before the rest of my household wakes up. Like this morning, I looked at my Bible on my iPhone for just a few moments, trying to grab a little Word before the babies got done watching their video and were fussy. Not my preferred time with the Lord but essential and helpful. Kind of like I shared at the event where you heard me speak, you eat nuggets of food when you aren’t hungry but have the chance, knowing you’ll need the nourishment later.
Another perspective that helps is recognizing that every part of life is seasonal, babies grow up so fast, learning seasons at work turn into seasons of being a veteran, people come and go, and every single season comes laden with special gifts, many are surprise gifts, often those we wouldn’t even buy for ourself yet those we need to have. So I try to receive the season and ask God to open my eyes to see things how He sees them and has ordained them for me, and I ask Him to give me a grateful heart for all He is bringing.  This helps me feel rich vs. cheated, and helps me stay on the receiving end with gratitude vs. on the demanding end where nothing is ever quite enough.
Sometimes I do well at this, other times I miss the mark big-time, get frustrated, impatient, and discouraged. Many many years as a single were wrought with tears of anguish, disappointments, etc. But looking back I see so many special gifts I was being given even then. I think tenacity and hope are like muscle groups, the more we use them and choose them, the stronger they become and the more stable we are in enduring and hoping no matter what. I desire to be a cheerful, hope-filled, joyful woman. I actually practice smiling, because when we smile it brightens others’ faces and changes how we feel ourselves. I wrote a blog awhile back on the effect of practicing smiling, you may enjoy it.
In regards to not letting what others say bother us, that is a tough one and is often simply a choice to let them roll off our back and move on quickly, not dwelling on what others say or do, especially when they’re not in our close inner circle of trusted advisors, and counselors. It’s easy to obsess on the negatives, but fretting is a dead-end cycle and there is always hope anyway, and help, and supernatural interventions that we get to experience when we stay strong in faith and believe.
These are a few of my strategies in a nutshell.  Thanks again for writing and keep remembering that you are strong and set apart, prepared ahead of time for ALL the Lord has brought you TO and will bring you THROUGH!
I’m cheering you on…
Lynette

 


When Ron asked me months ago if I’d give the Mother’s Day message at King’s Park, I immediately said YES, but as the weeks got closer and I was reflecting on what might be said, there was little inspiration and not much content, or so it seemed.

As is often the case, just days before Sunday while on a morning run, a theme emerged. I was pondering what people ask me most these days, “How are you doing?” and “How do you do it?”

So here are my answers under the seemingly fitting title,  “Agony, Ecstasy, and the Boring In-Between.”

My prayer is that you will be deeply encouraged, whatever agony or ecstasy you may be in, realizing that you’re never alone, and that gut-wrenching tears of both joy and sorrow are sure to come laden with unexpected gifts.

http://bit.ly/1t6LYKB

 


We just finished a whirlwind week of family time, two memorial services for Jordan, travel to and fro, and lots of emotions, as you can imagine.

I was hoping to write a blog that could capture some of my ponderings of late, but then last night I read my dear friend Carol’s amazing blog about Jordan and Cady. It so captures the richness of their love story, the tension between faith and not getting our prayers answered the way we wanted, and much more.

So I’m posting this link to her blog today, trusting you will be as inspired as I am, by a girl named Cady — our dear daughter-in-law, who is one in a billion as my husband always says, and who never left Jordan’s side even once throughout his fight.

Thank you Carol, for being such a fabulous mentor to Cady, for loaning your dear daughter Joy, Cady’s best friend, to be at her side for these many days, and for being one of my great heroes of the faith.