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By Cass DuCharme

published in Family Matters eNewsletter, August 25, 2017

As a minister, I love standing beside the families of our church through their times of celebration and need. Births and baptisms, Bible presentation and Sunday School promotion, working together on mission trips, worship services and weddings, and yes, even health needs and funerals.

These past few weeks however, you have been the ones standing beside me. Oh, you’ve been there before- the birth of Caitlyn and Chase, their baptisms, Bible presentations, Caitlyn and Brennan’s wedding, my skiing accident and surgery many years ago, to name just a few. But this time, this time you’ve stood beside me when the outcome wasn’t as sure.

As most of you know, I was diagnosed with prostate cancer in May and have since had surgery to remove it. I found out shortly after the surgery that all of the cancer was removed with my prostate and I am now cancer free. Oh, I’ll have to have some blood tests for the next few years, but my prognosis is great. Praise the Lord!

I haven’t been real comfortable being “in” the bed, instead of standing beside it, but thank you for standing beside me. The prayers, hospital visits, calls, texts, emails, Facebook posts, cards, home visits, meals, gifts and yes, even being left alone for a time to heal have meant more than you’ll ever know. You have ministered to me through this anxious time and I am most grateful. Highland Hills is a true family of faith. Thank you for sharing your faith with me. I love you all so much. Special thanks to the church staff and our guest musicians in worship for picking up the slack and taking care of everything at church and to Ruth, Caitlyn, and Chase for your constant love and care.

Being on the other side has taught me a few valuable lessons, like learning to slow down a little, because you don’t have any other choice. Letting others help you with menial tasks, because you’re not supposed to lift anything over 8 pounds for six weeks. Who comes up with this stuff? Being driven around instead of driving, thanks, Ruth. Letting someone else lead and learning to just follow, I don’t really like that one. Learning that the body heals at it’s own pace, I’m not a very patient, patient. Knowing that the Lord will always take care of me, I already knew that one but I know it even more today.

It’s been four weeks since the surgery and I am feeling better every day. I’m still working on getting my energy back, but Christmas is coming and I’ve got some planning to do. I’ll get to that, right after my nap.