LIVING: Living By Faith

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Danger in the Family

A few years ago, my mom was diagnosed with cavernoma. When my mom called me to tell me about it, I gave her a long “Errrr…..” until she realized I didn’t know what it meant. She explained, “It’s like an inflated blood vessel.” ‘Ceh! Just an inflated blood vessel mah’ I thought, until she continued the next sentence. “It’s in my brain!” The conversation went on with me asking my mom a series of “why”, “where”, “how”, “what” which my mom couldn’t really answer.

After the call, I went online to search for the culprit that threatened my mom’s life.

Here’s a summary of my research:
“Cavernoma (often referring to presence in the brain) to be a type of blood vessel malformation, where a collection of dilated blood vessels form a tumor (WHAT?! Tumor). They are not a cancer, which means they cannot spread to other parts of the body. (Sigh of relief) Most cases of cavernomas are congenital (present from birth). While there is no definitive cause, research shows that genetic mutations result in the onset of this malformation. As for treatment, there are 2 options: surgery or no treatment.”

What got to me was “no proven cause” and “no treatment”. This basically means that my mom (in technical terms) is just sitting and hoping that the cavernoma will not burst and cause death or brain damage. This cannot be right! There must be a way.

Pray for Me

As you can imagine, I was frantic and kept thinking of a way to help. But my mom told me over the phone, very calmly, “I am telling you this just to inform you. No need to worry. Just pray for me”. If she thought I will just do nothing, she must be crazy.

After a few weeks of researching, I come to the conclusion that there really is nothing that can be done. The chances of surgery going south is higher than it succeeding, so all I can really do is just “pray for her”. Over and over again, I thought to myself “Am I really just going to pray and DO NOTHING else? What kind of a son am I?” I cannot leave my mom over to chance. That will be too irresponsible. There must be another way.

Then one day, God snapped at me (at least that’s how I imagined it). “What do you mean leaving your mom’s case to chance? Do you think praying for her case is leaving to chance?!” With those stern words, I started to think back at all the times when the only thing I could do was pray. It didn’t dawn on me that I have left so many things in life to prayer: my exams, job, relationships, ministry. What made this time so different? After some thoughts, I realized why – This was a first time and it was REALLY about life and death.

In God’s Hands

It was really a kicker to realize then that what my mom was doing was what we ALL ought to be doing in life – leaving our lives in God’s hands.

It took a cavernoma and my mom’s faith for me to realise that all this while, although my mouth proclaimed that I surrender my life to God, I really haven’t. I thank God for what my mom did.

It has been about 6 years now and my mom is alive and well, by God’s grace.

May we all realise what it truly means to live by faith – every second of our lives are in God’s hands and ONLY God can take us away from this earth. No sicknesses, trials and diseases can take us away from the love of God.

By Leonard Lu
Grace Methodist Church, Miri
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