As I write this, I have just returned from Virginia where I attended and spoke at the funeral of my brother, Larry’s oldest grandchild. When “Kaci” was three weeks old, a fast-growing cancer was discovered on his spine. The surgery to remove it, along with the chemo and radiation seemed to take care of the problem. But it left him with weakened bones that required him to wear leg braces for seven years. It also left him with many other challenges, one was a pronounced limp. He had been in otherwise good health until he started experiencing pain in his back in late summer 2016. At first, he didn’t tell anyone, especially his Mom, my niece, Melanie, as she suffers from a rare form of MS. When the pain got unbearable, he asked his great grandmother to pray for him, and she told Melanie about it. A visit to the doctor discovered he had stage 4 spine cancer after having been cancer free for 18 years. He died early in the morning of Friday, March 17, when his heart gave out.
All along the way, Melanie, has been his rock. She has cared for him when he was sick, consoled him when his challenges made him unable to run and play like the other children. She encouraged him when he was down, and she helped him build a faith in God that he used to help sustain them in his dying. She is a remarkable woman.
This Sunday is the Fourth Sunday in Lent but it’s also the last Sunday in Women’s History Month. Perhaps you have heard the term “Women are the weaker sex.” Don’t you believe it! Melanie reminds me of many of the wonderful women I’ve known who can handle “The Unexpected” of life better than most men. Women like her seem to know how to experience the most severe darkness life can throw at a person and still overcome it to live as the light of God. How? Well, when faced with “The Unexpected,” Melanie’s faith has always caused her to simply give it all to Jesus. The results were that on Wednesday at Kaci’s homegoing services, she was able to do a tribute to her son and also sing the lead on his favorite song with their choir. The weaker sex? Don’t you believe it!
The good news is that overcoming “The Unexpected” is not just for women. It’s for all of us; us men too. Join us this Sunday as we observe Women’s History Month. Deacon Shun Reddock will preach on “The Unexpected” from Ephesians 5:8-14.