1 – Welcome to Lisa’s Story of Victory – earliest emails

March 9, 2011

Exodus 14:14 – the Lord will fight for you; you need to nothing but be still
Lisa’s visit to the doctor this morning has laid out an open canvas for God to step in and bring miraculous healing and that is what we are counting on. Lisa has been diagnosed stage 3 cervical cancer. There is a tumor that is pressing on her right side which is probably what is causing the intestines to not function properly and the right kidney is also being pushed on.
Beginning next week, she will be going through five weeks of radiation, five days a week and one time a week chemo. She will have a pet scan done to see if it has spread any other place in her body.
The pain she is experiencing is not going to go away until the tumor starts shrinking so he has given her medication to help manage the pain.
She is a bit shaken at the moment so please pray. She is also committed to keeping her sense of humor so anything you want to send, tell her, email, do it.
Prayer needs at the moment:
– her peace of mind
– the pet scan will come back with no cancer any other place
– the medication will work quickly so she can get some rest, thus gaining strength for the race ahead of her
– the radiation will be set up quickly so they can get started
Don’t hesitate to contact her; she is just really exhausted and the meds hadn’t started working yet so she asked me to send this out for her.
I know she is counting on your love and support as well as prayers to hold her up during these coming weeks.

March 10, 2011

Deuteronomy 11: 11, 12 – The land you are about to cross the river and take for your own is a land of mountains and valleys; it drinks water that rains from the sky. It’s a land that God, your God, personally tends—He’s the gardener—He alone keeps his eye on it all year long. (The Message)
As some of you already know, Friday is when Lisa goes for a Pet Scan. What they are looking for is anywhere else in her body the cancer may have spread to. The scan is from noon until 3:30.
Prayer requests:
– No cancer any other place in her body.
– The tumor in her abdomen is pushing against the large intestine and right kidney. This is keeping the functions from operating properly. She has gone to a liquid diet to have a better chance for things to pass as they need to. If the kidney can not function correctly, the doctor will have a urologist insert a tube into the kidney/ureter connection so urine will flow correctly. Please pray, until healing is evident,  something will shift off of those areas. That is where the intense pain is coming from and is keeping her having to take drugs to lessen the pain. It is keeping her weak and not able to do a whole lot. She can’t drive while taking these drugs so that also limits her ability to go to work. Being self employed, if she doesn’t work, she doesn’t get paid.
– Radiation begins on Monday. Please pray for it to work completely. No word yet on the chemo but probably some time next week also. That will be a once a week session. Side note: not enough chemo to make Lisa’s hair fall out – she was very glad about that.
– Complete peace and assurance of God’s love and healing and know and trust in the reality of God’s attendance in all these situations as He lives in her.
We will be setting up a schedule for her trips to radiation. Some of you have expressed a desire to be a part of this opportunity. Could you please email me with the days and times you are available.
I know she is so thankful for each of you and your prayers. I will keep you updated as we hear any other news.

March 12, 2011

The pain Lisa was experiencing all week has been found out.
The tumor in her abdomen has been pressing on the right kidney. The kidney could not drain properly so it swelled until it sprung a leak. She has been hospitalized since yesterday. The doctors have run all kinds of tests and this morning put a drain in the kidney. She will be in the hospital for 3-4 more days to make sure the drain is working correctly.
The swelling in her abdomen is going down as is the pain. Yeah God!
-Please pray the drain will continue work properly and the kidney will start working again.
-Please pray the pain will subside.
-Please pray God’s healing hand will continue to move in her life and body.

March 13, 2011

“He reached down from on high, took hold of Lisa and drew her out of deep waters, He rescued her from her enemies, from her foes who where too strong for her. They confronted her in the day of her disaster but the Lord was her strong support. He set her feet in a high place, He rescued her because He delights in her!” Ps 18:16-19
How wonderful to report the intense pain that has plagued her all week is gone. She is smiling, laughing, joking and gearing up for the next big fight. That begins today with prayer and tomorrow with her first radiation treatment. With her already being in the hospital, they will begin the process here at CMC-Main. After she is released from the hospital she will continue at CMC-Pineville.
Today is a day of rest for her. The Doctor came in today and is very pleased with outcome of the procedure and how well it is working. Tomorrow he is going to check with urology to see if the tubes can be moved to draining outside into a bag into going directly into the bladder. They would stay there until the tumor shrinks enough to get off the kidney. Will update as we know. . .
Interesting thing happened this morning at 4 stinking AM!!! A muslim lady came in to draw blood. The nurse was working with Lisa so she kept back. I could feel a resistance from her, a look of lost emptiness in her eyes. When she approached Lisa, she very flatly said “I’m here to draw blood.” She couldn’t find a vein. After fishing around she stepped back and left with the statement “I’ll send someone else in.” Weird vibes. Later Lisa and I were talking. We realized there was a spirit battle going on while she was in here. You could feel it. We both prayed for her to meet Jesus. It was just a void!  A little while ago, a phlebotomist came in, stuck Lisa, got blood, closed up shop! No problem. Lisa said to him “God sends just the right person when i need them.” He said, “I”m as good as He allows me to be.”  Another “Praise God!”
She will be moving to another room today and will be here for probably another two days or so. . .  ???? Will let you know.
Prayer requests:
– God will continue to move in the great power He has been, His presence has been with Lisa ever since this journey started
– Lisa’s spirits will continue to rise
– God will provide, again, healthcare workers that are believers
– The best providers here in the hospital
–  Always against infection

March 14, 2011

Great News – God is faithful, faithful, faithful to do all He has promised.
This morning, Lisa had four doctors come to her room. They agreed her vital signs were all great so she could go home. Hallelujah!
I am now working at the Medical Library at CMC and one of her Doctors just walked in. We had a bit of a chat about how amazing it is that Lisa is doing so well. She said, “She could have been really, really sick!” The way she said it was very cautious not to invade her privacy but I could see there was a lot behind that “really, really sick” statement. I told her we are a praying people and believe God does what He says He will do. She replied, “It worked, she should have been really sick!” God is so amazing. She changed “could” to “should!” Powerful difference.
The prayer focus for today is:
-> The PET Scan results came back. The cervical cancer is contained in one area so that hasn’t spread. The scan also showed some activity in the lymph by the aorta so they will be radiating that area also. PRAY! That all has to go!
-> Today Lisa will go to the first radiation treatment at CMC-Pineville. It will be a lengthy visit as they measure and mark and mess around with all that needs to be checked and measured and marked and programmed.
-> Pray for Lisa’s strength. She is still going to have the tube in her kidney, which is very uncomfortable. She tires very easily and dozes between words in a conversation (zzzzzz-she needs the rest!) If you are talking to her or are at the house, don’t take it personally!
-> Continue praying for no infection. With the tube still inserted, that needs to be a constant prayer need. That will be relooked at next week. As soon as the tumor shrinks and the pressure is off of the kidney, it will be replaced with a tube that goes directly from the kidney to the bladder. That could happen as soon as three weeks from now.
-> If you want to visit her, I would suggest calling her first. If she doesn’t answer, leave a message and she’ll get back to you as when she is able.
Side note about my availability: During the day you can call me but will need to leave a message. I can not answer my phone at work but can pick up messages between 12:30 – 2:30. I can also respond to text messages during that time. I am off at 4:00 so can return calls from the afternoon.
If you had contacted me about helping during the day, we will be able to get a better grip on making a schedule after her appointment today. I would ask you contact me about that schedule. She isn’t up to focusing on those types of details at the moment.
Any questions, ask! Not a problem. Nothing we won’t answer if we have one.
Thank you so very much for your prayers. Lisa is walking (almost-more like a really slow shuffle) evidence of God’s powerful intervention. Even the Doctors and nurses are amazed!

March 15, 2011

Lisa is confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.Philippians 1:6
What a crazy few days we have all moved through together. Lisa said over and over again how she could feel everyone’s prayers and knew that even though she was the one with the problem, we were all holding her arms up so she could keep moving ahead.
She is doing very well. She even sat at her desk today for a while and did a little bit of work. She still tires easily but is getting stronger by the hour. And of course, she has never once lost her sense of humor!
God performed a mighty miracle with her kidney this weekend and I am telling you, it is functioning amazingly well. Absolutely perfect!
Monday’s radiation appointment was to get her ready for the treatments that will begin next week. She will be contacting those of you that asked to be a part of the glory train ride to radiation. . .
This week she has a patient education appointment to learn all about what they will be doing with her, what the radiation treatment involves, the chemo portion, etc. Of course, we all now what God is doing with her! He has already performed two major miracles of healing in her kidney. Hallelujah!
For now, continue praying for her body to continue to gain strength every day so she will be ready for next weeks program to begin.
This will be my last “every day report” as the immediate crisis has passed. I will continue to send updates periodically as they arise. As always, any questions, comments, please stay in touch. Lisa’s email is isaacswell@earthlink.net / phone 704.643.7772.
If you want to be removed from this email posting, no problem, let me know.
It has truly been an honor to be the conduit between all of you mighty warriors and Lisa during this last week. Thank you for your prayers and love. She has been blessed over and over by each of you.
We will see you this weekend (We are looking for a classy way to tuck away the bag so Lisa can come to church! Not real fashionable to have it hanging from her waist band for church-ummm, I don’t think so!)

March 21, 2011

“They that wait upon theLord shall renew their strength, they will mount up on wings like eagles. They shall run and not grow weary, they shall walk and never faint, teach me Lord to wait.”
“Wait” in the original written language means “to entwine and intangle yourself” So Lord, let us entwine and entangle our selves with you, especially during this journey.
It has now been a week since Lisa left the hospital. While the whole experience was indeed a miracle, there are other situations that have persisted. She has days when she feels horrible, other days when she feels great. The pain she was suffering from with the kidney has lessened greatly but has been replaced by other pain. She is staying on pain medication and that helps keep things at a dull roar.
This morning we started taking communion. We will be doing that every morning and praying over Lisa as she goes through this battle. This morning Rose sent a You Tube link that was very encouraging.
Here is Lisa’s message for all of you today:
My pain level has improved alot today.
Tomorrow I go in for my first radiation and first chemo treatment. I will be gone from 10am to about 5pm. I tire easily so please pray for strength.
Also Blue Cross Blue Shield is denying coverage for the radiation treatment. They cover 3D conventional radiation and my doctors have recommended IMRT radiation. BCBS says the reason they are not covering it is because it’s experimental. I called the doctors office to tell them about it and they said it was standard treatment. I need prayer for wisdom. I want the treatment that offers the best outcome but I don’t want to get stuck with 10′s of thousands in debt.
The insurance issue is huge.  She is worrying about it and it is the first time she has been upset about anything since this whole battle started.
Prayer needs for now are:
1.  As stated, strength for tomorrow’s appointments. I would like to add on to that “No adverse reaction to the chemo, in Jesus Name”
2.  Insurance issue to be resoved immediately so she can go ahead with the treatment plan in peace
3.  Her strength to grow. She tires quickly and easily. She needs her strength to fight this battle
4.  Sleep at night. She is not sleeping well and gets up in the morning tired. The nephrostomy bag is becoming more and more burdensome and the daily care is getting more and more difficult. The surgery to internalize the tubes is next Monday, the 28th. Please pray they nursing staff that comes to “fix” it, are equipt to do what they are supposed to be doing. (Is that nicely stated?)
5.  Anything else the Lord tells you!
Thank you for your faithful prayers and all the love you have shown her. This has been such an encouragement to her.
I will let you know how things are progressing and as always, don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions.

March 27, 2011

Tonight I was reading through Leslyn’s Blog back when she was just starting the journey she traveled through her fight with cancer. After her surgery, people were asking her how she was doing spiritually. I read this story to Lisa and it was greatly encouraging as well as confirming how she is moving through the journey she is on.
This is Leslyn’s blog that answers the questions being posed to her:
Asleep in the Boat
Several people have asked me lately what the Lord is saying to me and where I’m at spiritually. I thought I would share with you a picture the Lord has been giving me. I have been encouraged by it and I hope you are too.
You may recall the story in the Bible (Luke 8:22-25) where Jesus and the disciples get into a boat to cross over the lake. While they were crossing, a huge storm came up and the disciples were freaking out because they were afraid. The waves on that lake can get huge and storms can come up out of nowhere, totally unexpectedly. The boat was on the verge of being swamped, the waves were crashing, the wind was blowing, the storm was raging but Jesus was sound asleep in the back of the boat. Always in the past, the emphasis for me has been on the fact that Jesus got up and calmed the storm, which of course is awesome. But right now, the picture that the Lord has been showing me has a different point.
As I pray, I keep seeing the boat in the midst of the storm, crashing waves, thundering seas, gusting wind and I see me, tucked up next to Jesus, sleeping beside Him in the back of the boat. The picture is of me in perfect peace, not because of circumstances around me but because I am next to Jesus. His arm is over me and we are both peacefully sleeping; because He is at peace, I am at peace.
I have been asking the Lord what I’m supposed to be doing during this time. This picture keeps coming back to me and the simple phrase, “rest and be at peace.” So here I am, where I am supposed to be just now, asleep in the boat with Jesus…in the midst of the storm.
As I read that to Lisa, she just kept nodding her head in agreement. This is how she is facing every single day, every hour and sometimes, moment by moment. I am in awe of how she never complains, never once as asked “Why” or “What if” or – anything. Not a word of despair! Nothing but praise to the Lord. How excellent is that?!?!
This past week and this weekend have been very sort of topsy turvy. She was hit really hard with nausea. She was not able to eat for most of Wednesday – Friday. Then on Friday, she ate a salad for lunch and felt great afterward. We thought the nausea was over. On Saturday morning it returned. Saturday afternoon we were on a conference call and were recounting the things the Lord has done, the miracles He has done, the provision we have seen Him provide for so many years. When we hung up the phone, the nausea was gone. In the evening she ate some healthy foods and felt wonderful all the way through Sunday. She was able to go to church and felt great through the whole day. What a blessing to see her laughing and joking around. Just a few minutes before going to bed she started feeling nauseated again.
Lisa had received a book that told about the whole chemo journey and what to expect and how to best work through them. Of course, neither of us read it before this started but we did know that nausea was a possibility for two – three days after the chemo. What we hadn’t read was how to best help the process; what is best to eat which really does rule out a lot of what is ordinarily around our house to eat. SO! We are ready for the possibility of this occurring again this week. Evidentially, the effects may build each week so hopefully we are a bit more ready for it.
Side note: We are trying to not “EXPECT” problems, not looking for them, but are ready if they come.
Tomorrow begins a new road on this journey!
At 7:00 tomorrow morning she will be at CMC-Main to have an outpatient surgery to remove the nephroscopy bag. The Doc will place a tube from the kidney to the bladder which will remain in place until the tumor has shrunk enough to allow the kidney to operate properly. I can’t tell you how excited Lisa is to get rid of the bag! I will tell you she had me take a picture of her holding her bag proving she really is a true “Bag Lady.” She threatened to use it on her Christmas Card this year – YIKES!!!
After the surgery is over and she is released from the hospital she will have radiation then will be home, probably late afternoon.
Tuesday she will have the second chemo treatment after radiation. The process itself isn’t horrible and the people working with her are amazing, which helps pass the time. The radiation treatments will continue daily through the the rest of the week.
These are the prayer targets for this week:
1. Surgery tomorrow goes with great ease and is clean, infection free.
2. Strength, strength, strength. She is mostly tired; exhausted every day. She will get a couple hours reprieve from the exhaustion and then it’s like she gets the wind knocked out of her again.
3. No Nausea – gosh, even if it comes it won’t be so drastic and physically devastating.
4. She needs to be able to have the presence of mind and strength to finish getting her taxes information together and be well for the tax appointment next Saturday.
5. She will continue with her complete and total reliance on the Lord. Every one of your prayers is having a profound effect on her and she is so grateful for you and your prayers.
Please don’t hesitate to ask questions if you have any. Just a note, I can’t answer my phone during the day but can get back with you if you leave a message.
Thank you each of everyone of you are making a huge difference in walking with Lisa during this journey.
I will keep you informed on any updates that come along.
Ok, this is the up to date emails and prayer requests; the beginning of the story.
From today on, Lisa (when she feels well) or I will be adding updates, prayer requests and anecdotes frequently! Come back! If you have dreams, visions, words of encouragement or Words from the Lord, please add them. I know this will be very encouraging to Lisa as she walks with great faith through this journey.
See you soon!
Bethel
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