"Welcome to my blog space. I believe that God has carefully placed gems in our paths to fill our days with joy. The challenge for us is to take the time to notice them. My desire is to share the gems in my life so that, hopefully, you will see the ones He's placed in yours. I hope what you read here will be worth your time and you'll want to return often." - Cathy

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

A Position of Victory

Tommy with
        My brother, Tommy, has been battling with low platelet counts for just over a year. In the beginning, his primary care doctor wasn’t too concerned and decided the best course of action would be to watch it and repeat the tests in a few months. At the repeat of the tests, Tommy’s platelet count was even lower. His doctor made an appointment with an oncologist/hematologist as a precaution.

          The oncologist ordered a few more tests and we found out Tommy’s spleen is enlarged which could account for the low platelet count. She decided to watch his blood levels for a year and release him then if his counts didn’t get any lower. They fluctuated some over the course of the year but basically held level and Tommy went for his last appointment with her, expecting to be released that day.

          As you’ve probably surmised, his tests weren’t good. Not only was his platelet count lower than it had been all year, his hemoglobin and his white cell count jumped on the bandwagon. Again, as a precaution, the oncologist ordered a bone marrow biopsy. The test was done under anesthesia on May 7th and the results would be explained at an appointment on May 21st.

          The good news was huge. Many cancers were ruled out. Praising God began immediately, only briefly interrupted by a teeny, tiny, little cloud trying to diminish the good news as we learned there were some cells deemed abnormal that couldn’t be identified. My brother’s response was, “I now have medical proof that I am abnormal!”

          You might ask how Tommy can have such a light-hearted outlook given the mixed bag of news he received. The answer is easy. On Valentine’s Day, 1991, he accepted Jesus into his life as his personal Savior. Every since then, Tommy has fought his battles out of a position of victory. The victory over life, death and everything in between was won for him by Christ when He died on the cross. That makes me want to shout out loud!

          What about you? Have you accepted Jesus as your Savior or are you struggling along with an “I don't need God. I can do it myself” attitude? There’s good news for you:

          God loves you regardless of what you’ve done or been or the attitudes you have toward Him. He doesn’t have favorites among those He created so what He did for Tommy, He’ll do for you. I’ve heard God called The Hound of Heaven. He won’t give up on you. He desires for you to live forever with Him, just so He can love you longer. Salvation is free. Jesus paid your debt for you.

          I’d love to talk to you about accepting Christ as your Savior if you have never taken that step. E-mail me at: hiskid410@gmail.com and we’ll arrange a time to talk. The victory is yours for the claiming.

Going out with joy today-


The A B C's of Salvation
Admit to God that you are a sinner. Repent (turn away from) of your sin.
Romans 3 : 23 "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God"
I John 1:9 "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins
and purify us from all unrighteousness."

Trust that Jesus is God's Son and that God sent Jesus to save people from their sins.
John 3 : 16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His one and only Son, that whosoever
believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life."
Give your life to Jesus. Ask Him to be your Lord and Savior.
Romans 10 : 9-10 That if you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord', and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved."

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Mother's Day Blessings

Cathy, Nanci, Caitie and McKenna
Four Generations
I hope your Mother's Day was as wonderful as mine was. All but one of my children, who lives away, attended church with me. Two granddaughters and my great-granddaughter made four generations of us in church together that morning. No gift can outdo the joy I receive from worshipping with my family.
Later that day my daughter, Nanci, invited my husband and I to go to a newly opened yogurt shop in our area. When we arrived at her house, I was met by an excited six-year old who had made "a surprise" for Grandma. When Emma joined our family, we felt blessed. I had no idea what joy she would bring to us. What follows is my version of a poem for Emma.
Emma with my "Surprise"


As precious as diamonds,
An unexpected blessing. 

She stood on the steps as she’d been taught,
But when the car stopped moving
She bounded through the grass,
One hand held captive behind her back.                

She danced in anticipation,
Satisfaction filled her smile.
She was confident I would love
What she was about to reveal. 

She had worked quickly, in silence,
Her secret to keep.
Then her voice oozed with pride,
“Grandma, these are for you!” 

She unleashed the lovely prisoner-
Twelve white clover blossoms and
One pink azalea, for accent,
All bound up in a clover stem. 

As precious as diamonds,
An unexpected blessing. 

By Cathy Biggerstaff 

Going out with joy today-

Saturday, May 10, 2014

The Report of My Death was Exaggerated!

“The report of my death was exaggerated.”
Mark Twain

Some of the medications
and paperwork
            Several of my readers have asked if some horrendous catastrophe has befallen me since I haven’t blogged in 2014. The answer is yes, and no. The whole month of February was dedicated to fighting a huge kidney stone that managed to move itself out of my kidney just enough to keep my kidney from functioning. It all began on February 2nd and, after two surgeries, two runs of antibiotics, weekly doctor visits, much pain and discomfort, I had my last procedure on February 28th. It took me almost three weeks after that to regain my strength. I’m learning the body was made for activity, not lying around for an extended period. The human body creates energy by expending energy.

            I felt privileged when I was asked late last year to be part of the Leadership Team for the 2014 Write2Ignite! Conference for writers of Christian literature for children and young adults. I signed on to produce the Resource Manual which would be given to each
attendee. My deadline was February 25th with most of the information not available until late January. I missed the deadline due to kidney month festivities. All transactions were handled electronically so, working as I was able, I did get everything submitted in March in time for the draft to be edited, returned to me for revisions, and sent to the printers so we could have them ready by conference time.        

Most of what I’ve described doesn’t seem to go with my blog/life theme, Joyful Journey, but as I consider it I can find joy to spare from this experience:

1)    It gives me joy bubbling up and brimming over to see all the tiny details God arranged so that I could get the care I needed. Last year I met Jane, a doctor, at the women’s Bible study I attend. This year I became part of the leadership team for Community Bible Study and she became my shepherd. When she made her shepherding call the day after I’d been to the ER, I told her about my stone. She used her influence to get me into a urologist’s office the next day. There’s no telling how much worse my condition would have gotten without her intervention. God started this process at least as far back as the birth of this little girl who became a compassionate doctor. Another quirky note in the story is that Jane’s husband and our new urologist grew up in the same town.

2)    For the previous four years since my forced retirement, I haven’t had any health insurance. In January, I was eligible for Medicare. The costs for my February care added up to tens of thousands of dollars. With Medicare, I only paid about $2,000 of that. I am so thankful for God’s provision, not just in this experience, but over the last four years as well.

3)    The urologist I had seen for years moved out of town to be closer to aging relatives. He had a partner who had seen my husband but I couldn’t imagine being his patient. I started dreading that as soon as I realized I had a kidney stone. God provided again when I found out we had a new urologist in town. The new doctor was everything I needed in this situation-compassionate, efficient and the appropriate amount of urgency and reassurance. His staff was wonderful, too.

The premise of this blog is that God drops gems of joy along our daily paths. It’s our job to recognize them, appropriate them and share them with others.

Going out with joy today. I hope you will, too!