Truth #1: The church was filled with people asking why, searching for answers that would most likely never come. Many of us had spent the last few days saying “If only…”. If only I had reached out to Tim, if only I had tried to help him more. The reality is that there are rarely answers to these type of questions…the truth is life is often difficult and hard. We all recognize and understand the truth that there are seasons of life which are simply painful. Nowhere in scripture does God promise even the most faithful or spiritual of us an easy, pain free life…there will be seasons where we are left asking these difficult questions.
Truth #2: In the midst of these most difficult times God does promise to always walk with us. While scripture never promise an easy life it is filled with promises of God’s presence in the midst of turmoil. “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” “My peace I give you…a peace that passes all understanding.” Scriptures are filled with passages that talk of the Spirit of God walking beside, behind, before us as we journey through life.
We then lit a candle recognizing that we were not gathered alone, the Spirit of God was there with us…to guide us in our time of mourning as we celebrated Tim’s life. It was a special night.
As the service came to a close I felt a twinge in my shoulder and it felt like I had pulled a muscle. It had been a stressful week. One of my friends joked, “Nancy needs to give you a shoulder massage tonight.”
Friday morning I awoke with pain all down my right side and it was hard to take a deep breath. Again, the previous week had been busy…it was time to relax and let my body heal. As the day progressed the pain worsened. During the day Nancy and I went to the drugstore and I purchased a new heating pad in hopes of helping make things better. Later in the day I started having trouble breathing. I could not get a full breath of air. The pain in my shoulder started to move down my right side. It felt like the pain you get when you cough too much and pull a muscle in your chest.
Friday night was Rayann’s prom and I watched Nancy take her and a few friends off for a great evening. [Rayann looked absolutely beautiful…almost to good to let out of the house] By the time the party was over at 3:00 am on Saturday it was clear I was not getting any better and it was time to head to the ER.
Saturday morning was a lot of tests…more tests…more tests…more tests…more tests, you get the idea. Eventually they chose to give me a room and we started a whole new group of tests…more tests…more tests, on and on. I do want to say that the staff on 2 West at the Chester County Hospital was amazing. It is odd how you go in a patient and leave with people you can call friend.
Tuesday afternoon Nancy and I met with one of the doctors who told us that I have Colon Cancer which has spread into my Liver. It was not the news we were wanting to hear…but something we had talked about earlier the longer the testing went on.
Today [Wednesday] I was released from the hospital. We stopped by the church on the way home to take care of a few things which needed done. [yes, I am taking care of myself. part of helping me recover means I will need to stay busy…I can not simply sit at home]
Tomorrow [Thursday] I return to the hospital to have a port put in which will be where I receive future treatments.
Friday I am meeting with my oncologist so we can make plans and take steps toward starting Chemotherapy. Chemotherapy will start shortly and will take place every other week.
Laying in my hospital bed throughout the day and in the dark of night my mind would often return to the start of Tim Corum’s memorial service. I reflected long and hard on those two truths I shared with the congregation that night. The “Why’s?” spoke loud and hard through the night and in the early mornings. It was comforting to know that no matter what the days, weeks, months & years ahead hold for me and my family we will not walk it alone. We have the support of loved ones, both family and friends. Ultimately it is the Spirit of God who goes beside, behind and before us and will offer His peace which passes all understanding.
Ruth Nicastro says
Sadden to hear about your cancer. Know that you have a whole church of wonderful people praying for you. We don’t know why things happen as they do but the Lord is in control and you and your family are in his hands.
I too have been praying for you ever since I heard and will continue to pray for you and your family. GOD BLESS YOU
Ruth Nicastro (Andrews mom)
Chris Watson Bresnahan says
I just read your blog and wanted to let you know that I am thinking of you and your family and sending many prayers. I know your faith will carry you through the times ahead. Just wanted you to know that an old friend was thinking of you. Take care of yourself…you and God have this beat already!! 🙂
Jer and Char Button says
Oh Dan. Yes, it so hard to sometimes understand why our Heavenly Father allows us to go through such deep waters. I can remember when I received the news of my cancer and I was devastated, but most assuredly aware that I was not for one moment alone. Of course there was Jer, my family and friends, but there was a greater peace and comfort in knowing that God was very present and knew what I needed and when I needed it. Not for one moment did I doubt His presence and care.
Of course we will be praying for you in the days ahead. And we will be praying for Nancy, Joseph and Rayann. I worried more about my family than me–their fears, worries and needs–as I’m sure you do for your precious family.
God loves you more than we can imagine and He will carry you through. Hold onto His promises and let your light shine. I realized how important it was to let the medical personnel caring for me know that my God was faithful always and I was in His hands.
We love you Dan
Jer and Char
Alise Hall says
Dan, I wil add you to my prayers, and to the prayer list at church. God is a GOOD God. He will be by your side.
Holly Nicewonger Smith says
Daniel I will be with you in thought and prayers. I worked at the cancer center for over 10 years I know the road ahead with not be easy. I will pray for you and your family if you need to talk. You can call me or.my sisters. We are family 724-388-3027
David Daniels says
Dan, quite disturbing to read this and know what you are facing. You began with Tim and people asking “Why?” And you finished with your own whys. “Why?” is the first and most normal question we all ask when hit with difficult news. I’ve learned that as much as we might desire it, God rarely gives us answers to the whys — instead, he responds with a who, a high priest who has been through it all. I don’t write this to give you new information, just to remind you of what you already know. Also, to let you know that Charlene and I will be joining a whole host of people praying for you.
Bob O'G says
Dan/Nancy – so very sorry to read this. Prayers and God’s grace as you work through this.
My goodness, Dan. Heartfelt prayers are being lifted up for you. May our God of healing sustain you through the treatment and bring you to recovery. May He comfort you and your family with incredible peace. May He give you strength.
Jim Kennon says
Dan, I’m asking my friends, colleagues, and churches on the West Coast to lift you in prayer. We’re rooting for you, Brother.
Kevin Walden says
Pastor Dan, as you can see from Melody’s response, we are praying for you. I’ve been praying all day for you and Nancy. Please do know that we stand ready to help you and the congregation in any way we are able. We love you dear brother. We are lifting up your whole family in our prayers. May the Lord grant you strength and peace as you fight this cancer.
David and Dottie Ashby says
We are pouring out prayers from our little south Jersey church. Seeing your faith and strength as you face this battle is truly a testament to the power of God within you. We will continue to cry out “Abba Father your healing, strength, and courage is needed” knowing that His will is stronger then any diagnosis.
Love and prayers in Christ Jesus,
David and Dottie Ashby
Chris Reid says
Dan, there are no words. I choked up as I read your letter. Very upsetting.
It is important for you to understand how much you mean to so many. You probably don’t know how many people you have impacted in great ways. Not just your job, but who you are as a person. I adore you!
Know that I am here and can do anything you need.
Please, just get better.
Richard Roberts says
You and your family will be in my Prayers…????????
You don’t need me to tell you that your in God’s hands…
This reminds me what my pastor has said to me ” some people say God will never give you more than you can handle. That’s not necessarily true. God WILL give you (or allow you to have) more than you can handle alone, So that you will seek him and rely on his support and guidance ”
May God bless you and heal you Daniel….
Nancy Feldott says
Dan, I’ll be praying for you, for God’s and abiding presence, for times of refreshing and renewal and strength, for wisdom for you and Nancy and the doctors, and for healing. We’ll be praying for you this morning in faculty devotions at Pioneer Valley Christian.
Laureen McAlister says
You do not know me, but in 2001 my husband was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer that had gone to his liver…In 2006 I was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer and then in 2009, stage 2 lung cancer…Surgeries and chemo for both…
Please contact me if I can be of any assitance…
Sandy Hill Community Church
Joyce S says
So sorry to hear this terrible news. My prayers are with you, Nancy and the kids.
Our children and all of
us have been so blessed to have you in our lives.
Your love and leadership and faith had a major impact on who they are today.
We love you!!
Jennifer and Steve Thayer says
Dan you and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. Having been down this road with Steve’s parents we too know the journey ahead of you. It is not an easy journey but I know that your faith will help guide you through it. Sending you good vibes and positive thoughts my friend.
Andrea VanBergen Lopez says
Hi Daniel – It saddens me to hear of the pain you’ve endured and have yet to go through. You and your family will be in my prayers. I know God will comfort and strengthen you during this tough time. Be well my friend.
Michele Clarke says
God can help by bringing you through the difficult aspects of life, making you stronger than you ever thought you could be. The older we get these aspects of life tend to get more difficult, but somehow with God by our side, we are still able to cope. Just think about when we were in middle school it was like life or death to be wearing the right sneakers. Then in high school, sports and choosing the right college seemed to matter so much. In reality, sneakers and college really did matter as long as you got the degree and got a good job. Most of all it mattered that you are happy. Many people did things backwards got a family first and then went to college. None of that matters as long as the family was happy.
Good Luck, God Bless, Take Care to You and Your Family!
Michele Clarke (Coons) and my husband Tim and our 9 Children Ages 12-27. Children Living in – Meghan NY studying Physics/Astrophysics, Dylan on Wrestling Scholarship in Kansas Marketing, Emily in Los Angeles Studying Teaching, TJ Studying Engineer in Los Angeles. Plus we have Bradley and his wife Kaylee living in Anaheim, Bradley works for Apple Corporation; David and his Girlfriend live at our house both working 40 hour each, Amanda lives in her own apartment in Las Vegas while working Full time.
Just a little something to distract you…..
Roger VanDerWerken says
God’s strength and Peace to you Dan. Thanks for your powerful ministry!
Blessings to you and Nancy
Jane Beckland says
Dan, You were an important part of my life while you were serving at CIA. I am thankful for you every day, but especially now – you are able to live the Truth you taught me – It is all in God’s hands, Rest in Him, draw your strength from Him. Do not worry, for it will not add a minute of time to your life. HE IS IN CONTROL. You and your family have long been in my prayers, and I will continue to hold you up daily. Please post how you are doing so I will know how to direct my prayers. God Bless you and keep you.
Alan Selig says
Karen and I are praying for you, Daniel. Even in this initial posting your faith in God is clearly declared. May you, in all the positives and negatives of this “new normal” live and share in ways that glorify God and show others the value of depending on the Lord of Life.
Carlos Dario Peralta says
Thanks for sharing your heart with us and these important lessons and prayer request. I am sharing it with my congregation in Orlando Fl where I currently live.
“When we pray, we recognize that we don’t have the ANSWERS. We believe and trust on whom love us, our creator, father and Lord.”
(Founder of Encuentro Latino in Coatesville, PA and Special Assistant for Latin America to the Rev. Adalia Gutierrez, Director of Latin America and Iberoamerica for ABC IM.)
Carrie Heere Carter says
Dan, my thoughts and prayers are with you, and your family, as you face this challenge. Will be thinking of you often and wishing you only the best.
Karen Selig says
So sorry to hear this, Dan. I am joining with the many who are praying for you, asking especially today that the peace of God that passes all understanding will surround and fill you and your family as you walk this difficult journey.
Bill Cloues says
Dan, Peg and I will definitely be holding you and the family before the Lord in our prayers.
Tricia Downes says
Sending you prayers and good thoughts.
Sandy & Kevin O'Neil says
We are so very sad to hear of your pain and difficulty but can hear you thinking “what is God wanting me to learn in this?” We have been praying for you and will continue to lift you and your family in prayers. You have blessed our lives. I wish we could be with you to help.
Denise Ridley says
As I read your blog this morning, I was reminded how quickly things change in our lives. I was amazed that you have decided to blog your journey and the thought came to me, that your heart is so totally the Lords that He wants to use you as a living epistle read of all men. To use you for a harvest of souls is a much greater way than you ever imagined. The prayers of the saints partner with you for the journey. Praying for you today!
Don Williams says
Dan, Nancy and family,
Thinking of you all during this difficult and trying time. You are in our thoughts and prayers.
Don and Audrey Williams
dotti fry says
Just spoke with Meghan tonight. She told us the news. We are so sorry to hear about this diagnosis. You and your family will be in our prayers and on our church prayer list. I go on Wednesday night to prayer meeting and we uphold each others requests each week. We love you guys. Hang in there. God is in control.