Cancer, Grace, Hope, Loss, Prayer, Treasures in the Darkness, Words of Endurance

My Most Unexpected Treasure

Trust God from the bottom of your heart;
don’t try to figure out everything on your own.
Listen for God’s voice in everything you do,
everywhere you go;
He’s the one who will keep you on track.

One cloudy gray day several months after my amputation, I was driving the car and my emotional state pretty much matched the weather. I was struggling to make sense out of all that had happened to me during the previous few years and I wasn’t coming up with any answers. I had achieved my dream of becoming a Major League Pitcher but a diagnosis of cancer in my pitching arm rocked my world. First there was the surgery that promised to end my career, then my amazing comeback – then just a few days later my arm broke mid pitch – then the reoccurrence of the cancer, more surgeries, radiation, infection and finally – no arm.

I knew I could trust God but I had begun taking a hard look at my life. I wondered where my life might be headed. No arm, no career – just where did God want me to go?

Through the gloom of that day a song came over the car radio and caught my ear:

“First I want to thank You Lord
for being who You are.
For coming to the rescue of a man who’s drifted far.
For calling me to be Your son
and calling me to serve,
Lord the way You’ve blessed my life
is more than I deserve.”

Somehow that song touched my heart right where I was at that point in time. As it continued I broke down and cried.

“Let me be the evidence of what Your Grace can do,
to generations struggling to find themselves in You.
May they come to know the love of God.
May their eyes be made to see.
Give me the opportunity to
share the truth that sets them free!”
That was it! That song spoke into my life and directed it to where it needed to go. It perfectly expressed the vision in my heart – a vision I had not yet been able to see.

I never expected to cry from a song but I prayerfully and tearfully joined in the chorus:

“This is my prayer,
lifted to you,
Knowing you care
even more than I do.
This is my prayer lifted in Your name.
Your will be done
I humbly pray.”

I haven’t heard that song for years but the memory of it takes me back to that grey rainy day when God broke through my fog and gloom and reminded me of my heart’s deepest desire – for my life to reflect Jesus where ever He will lead me. What a treasure!

When you hurt,
I mean really hurt,
Where are the blessings?
What good can actually come of it?
Suffering can not only draw you closer to God,
But He can use it to reveal blessings
that will give you hope to hang onto.

On the journey with you,
Dave Dravecky

(The song “Prayer” was sung by Petra and written by Bob Hartman, John Elefante)