“The Leper” by Ron DiCianni

I learned of a potential physical challenge a year ago in August 2022.  From the beginning, I have prayed the leper’s prayer, which he pleaded to Jesus, “If you choose, you can make me clean.”  From the beginning, I believe I was chosen to be made clean.

That conviction was validated yesterday morning when I visited my oncologist.  After a year of treatment, including chemotherapy, monthly injections from the urologist, and daily medications, my oncologist confirmed that my PSA is undetectable – <0.1 – which means the cancer is in remission.  To say I am cured is a misnomer according to my oncologist, but statistically, my treatment and the way my body has responded suggests I have another good five to seven years.  As I approach my 74th birthday, I would be selfish to ask for or expect more.  Now I can concentrate on rehabilitating the leg.

The Return of the Crusader, 1835 by Lessing, Carl Friedrich (1808-80)

As I’ve stated in the previous ‘lessons’ I’ve posted, it has not been an easy path to walk, and I am convinced without doubt that – in the words of Francis de Sales – God either shields us from suffering or gives us the strength to bear it.  That shield or strength does not come as a suit of body armor, rather from the circle of friends who gather around us to pray and support us when we need it most.

I still have a ways to go for complete recovery, but positive signs emerge every day… my hair is growing back… I’m losing the water weight I gained… neuropathy is minimal in the hands and less severe in the feet… I am less fatigued…

As we got in the vehicle to drive home, Mrs. tVM asked how I felt.  I started to weep.  “Relieved and grateful,” I managed to reply, “Relieved that I can see a light at the end of the tunnel and grateful for the many family and friends who stood with me and offered prayers and support throughout the journey.”

Saying ‘thanks for your prayers’ is in no way a cliché, but a sincere acknowledgment that you have had a hugely positive impact on my health.

We are indeed all family.

Mitakuye Oyasin.

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  1. God is GOOD…. And WE are SO GRATEFUL !! Thanks be to God, and your Wonderful wife, Family, and friends !! Keep up the amazing healing, and positive attitude, Gene !!
    WE LOVE YOU and continue our Prayers !!

  2. I told my wife, Deb, about your good news. She was thrilled and said “welcome to the club” Deb is eleven years cancer free. As you point out, you cannot make the journey alone. Your friends help you get there, but your spouse is by your side every day, every day, every day. The gift at the end of the day is that you are so much closer than ever imagined. God bless.

  3. Great news, Gene. My wife had a bad accident in February. She shattered her shoulder, broke bones in her wrist, and broke her right leg. The shoulder and wrist are coming along after time with an occupational therapist. The leg has been more complicated. She just got a brace to help stabilize her knee. She is walking now with a cane and sees a physical therapist 4 times a week. God can work healing in a variety of ways. Sometimes it is a slower process than other ways He can work, but it is important to recognize God as the healer ultimately. He also uses people as the vehicle. I like the concept of a team approach.