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Getting a diagnosis in many ways makes you feel like you are on an island. Though from the get go I have had people who were praying for me, checking on me and bringing us food on hard days, there is still something very lonely about walking this road. There are so many things that I will experience, feel and face that I can’t explain or describe. They are things that you have to experience to understand. It’s a lot like coming to know God’s mercy and grace – you don’t know its full weight until you’ve experienced it yourself.

For those who may be unfamiliar, mercy is not getting what you deserve. Being that I am a sinner and one who cannot completely and fully uphold the perfection God requires, the only thing I’ve earned and truly deserve is Hell. Grace is being given a gift that you do not deserve. Everything better than Hell is grace. God in His incredible kindness and love extends each of us forgiveness through His Son Jesus if only we’ll believe. I am constantly amazed at God’s love for me. I am in awe of His mercy and grace.

Sometimes we also get to experience acts of grace here on earth at the hands of other humans. I recently had the privilege of experiencing this thanks to Grace. Yes, Grace brought grace right to my doorstep.

Grace, a friend and sister in Christ, called me several weeks ago after I had confided in her that I was having some extensive testing done and the expected result was cancer just to check on me, to cry with me and to pray over me. This mama of two small-ish children went out of her way to let me know she cared, to make sure I knew I wasn’t alone and to listen to anything I wanted to share without expectation of details. That phone call was just the beginning. The calls kept coming and then one day there was a call that I never expected. Grace in the most humble way let me know that if it was okay with me, she’d like to walk the one part of this journey with me that she could – cutting and losing my hair. Grace assured me that her request to join me for that leg of the journey was in no way to take the focus off of me but rather to be a billboard that reminded people to pray for me, herself included. Grace need not to have ever spoken that last sentence. There was no mistaking her genuine offer and heart. Immediately, I was stunned to silence. Who would be so willing to let go of comfort and something so obvious to everyone to do this with me? Who was I to deserve such a thing? Then it hit me. Just like God’s forgiveness and promise of Heaven, I didn’t deserve it. It was a gift. I told Grace I’d be honored to have her join me. Just a few days after my first treatment and days after I had cut my own long hair short to donate it, I got a picture from Grace who had done the same. Here we are a few days after that because I needed to have a picture of this step because this alone was an incredible gift.

Grace has continued to stand by me, pray with me and listen with out expectation. Two weeks ago, she reminded me of her willingness to go from short hair to buzzed hair like my own and I was once again struck speechless. She had said it from the beginning but I never dreamed that it may actually be something someone would follow through with especially since I had not minced words about all of the reasons to not to directly to her. This time I couldn’t answer Grace right away. I needed time. I needed to let all of the weight settle in on me to realize the gift I was being offered. After ten days, I was able to respond. Through tears, I explained how grateful I am for Grace and grace.