The Faces of Cancer

It’s been a difficult week here at MD Anderson Hospital in Houston. Kaylee’s chemotherapy treatment was delayed because she had some internal bleeding which was causing severe pain.  However, after a short procedure to stop the bleeding, a noisy night in the Intensive Care Unit, and many long hours of monitoring her blood counts to determine if the bleeding had stopped or if more surgery would be required, Kaylee finally began chemotherapy on Thursday evening.  She received treatment each day and will receive the final treatment for this round on Monday morning (in a few hours) for a total of five treatments.  This process will be repeated every three weeks for four rounds, hopefully ending the first part of May.

I believe we will be able to go back home in between rounds of treatment but some of the details are yet to be determined.  We appreciate all of your encouragement and prayers.  Please pray for strength, continued good health for the entire family, and for Kaylee to experience minimal side effects.  Kaylee has had nausea throughout the treatment and has not eaten much all week but her attitude remains positive, and when she smiles I’m sure the whole room lights up.  I held her tonight and we both quietly cried; I don’t think I’ve ever loved her more. Twelve years old is way too young to have to face cancer.  But, unfortunately, many cancer patients are even younger.

We have been staying at the Ronald McDonald House, about a fifteen minute walk from the hospital.  This house has been a wonderful blessing with room for fifty families, all of whom are receiving some kind of treatment for their children at the hospital.  Many, perhaps most, of the children are cancer patients.  The picture with this message shows one of our older daughters with several of the young children at the House.  Our daughter has developed an effective ministry of playing with the children in the evening and giving parents a much needed rest.  I don’t know the stories of all the children in the picture but I know that three of the children have some form of brain cancer, have recently had surgery, and are in the process of various forms of treatment.

One child I feel obligated to write about is the little three year old girl with the heart on her shirt.  She has a rare form of brain cancer and has grown particularly fond of our daughter.  I feel obligated because of a conversation I had with the girl’s mother.  The mother told me how devastated she was in finding out about her daughter’s cancer.  I can certainly relate!  Next she told me how one of her relatives, upon being told about the cancer, responded that the child had cancer because she, as a mother, did not have enough faith.  I am so saddened, frustrated, and discouraged that there are those who would say such a thing, and say it in the name of Christ!

I’m not sure how to write this gently, especially because I know there are those who receive these messages who hold to such a belief.  However, I need to say clearly, and without even a hint of trepidation, that there is a special place in hell reserved for this kind of teaching.  It does not properly represent true Christianity and ought to be rejected at every turn!

I apologized to this mother on behalf of the Christian faith; and I am so sorry if there are others who have been similarly hurt.  There is no truth in this kind of response, no hint of love, and certainly no ability to give comfort.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”

As I stated in the message “His Purpose in Pain”, God is there to walk with us through our trials; to love us and provide comfort.  And we, in a very real way, have been charged with this same task as we represent Christ to others.  Sometimes theological positions are formed simply by studying the Bible, other times we need to study church history.  But, for me, this particular truth became unshakably firm as I took what was written in God’s Word and then looked deeply into the faces of cancer.

Have a Christ Centered Day!

Steve Troxel
God’s Daily Word Ministries

**** Reading Plan ****

Feb 25 Leviticus 16:29-18:30; Mark 7:24-8:9; Psalm 41:1-13; Proverbs 10:15-16

238.34 miles in 2013 : Goal 1509 miles

26 responses to “The Faces of Cancer”

  1. Tendwayi

    May the God of Ephesians 3:14-20 arise pour his precious blood upon Kaylee’s and many other children suffering from cancer and give them divine healing and protection.

    We thank the Lord of Philippians 1:6. Thank you for such a touching testimony as it is strengthening me day after day …. my faith grows. Our prayer are with you and the family.

    Stay blessed


  2. Sarah Sumbureru

    My mom succumbed to cancer after a 12 year battle. One friend said to me, “Did you people fast and pray?, I refuse that any of my parents dies of cancer and I tell God that not in my family will anyone die from cancer”. I was shocked to say the least, I didnt know how we twist the Word around and think we can manipulate God. This is a very painful thing any Christian could say to another believer. I was made to feel I was a child of a lesser God and that I hadnt prayed hard enough for my mother’s healing.

    I do not know how you are coping but may our Father in heaven give you the faith and determination to dig ditches to receive your blessing even when there are no clouds in the sky. May He surprise and refresh you in this desolate world with the living water made available by the sacrifice of His only begotten Son .

  3. Dorothy

    May the good LORD continue giving you strength and faith. Nothing will separate us from the love of GOD. Wishing you and the whole family all the blessings.

  4. Pastor Cliff Beveridge

    Kaylee and your entire family are in our prayers. Thank you for your wonderful example of standing strong in your faith. And thank you for showing Christ’s love to the mother of that three year old girl. It made me sad (and a little bit upset, I must admit) to hear about her relative who spewed out such hurtful nonsense in the name of Christ. I am thankful God allowed you to be there so you could show her what true Christian compassion is…

    Pastor Cliff Beveridge

  5. wangari muchoki

    my heart reaches out to you. I have been blessed dearly by your fathers messages and now it is my chance to encourage both you and your parents. May the good Lord embrace you all with His goodness, give you strength and healing in this season in Jesus name.
    A ministry is being birthed………it shall be well child.

  6. Margaret.A

    May our Heavenly Father give you the needed strenght and courage to face this time of trial. Praying for Keylee ‘s speedy recovery. Let us pray, wait and be still to know that GOD is Good and HE is good all the time.

  7. Tanya

    I just want to say I’ve been reading your daily devotional now for a few years and they have helped me in my walk with the Lord and I’ve shared them with many friends and family members and on my neice’s facebook page (Prayers for Cassidy) that I created when my 10 year old neice Cassidy Rousseau was diagnosed with A.L.L Leukemia Jan 2, 2011 (our world was changed forever) but our faith has grown and we know that will God’s daily guidance, mercy, strength and love we can get through this trial just as your Kaylee will !!!!!! We are praying for her and your entire family !!!!

    Love & Prayers,
    Tanya from Texas

  8. David

    My prayers are with you and the families. You can bet from now on when the opportunity arises, I will be throwing my spare change in the collections for the Ronald McDonald house(s)!
    Be strong and courageous.

  9. E. Lynne Wooden

    Dear Kaylee:

    May the Lord bless you, and keep you [guard, protect, compass about with a hedge of safety]. May the Lord make His face shine upon you, and be gracious unto you. May the Lord lift up His Countenance [give full attention in a favorable way] upon you, and give you peace [wholeness, health, security, serenity, well-being, contentment, harmony, an absence of negative stress, disturbance, tension, and conflict].” Numbers 6-:24-26 is my prayer for you, Kaylee, and your family.

  10. Mona

    I wish some of the people who said those hurtful things to you would read the book “Heaven Is For Real” and their devotional book “Heaven Changes Everything”!!
    VERY uplifting and inspirational books!

    God be with you all in this turmoil ! (and He IS !— and Jesus is Risen, He is Risen Indeed!)

  11. Becky B.

    To the entire Troxel family,

    May God show you His grace, mercy and love. And through you I know all that you meet will be blessed and feel God shine in you. Sometimes we never will see or might not understand the purpose of the trials and tribulations that we experience…but I know you trust in Him and will keep your eyes focused on Jesus as you walk this out. May everyone you meet be left better for knowing you and seeing the Lord work in your lives. You are all truly and inspiration for others. Thank you for God’s Daily Word and for sharing your lives with all of us…we share in your hope. I pray for health for Kaylee and each and every other child that is in the hospital.

  12. Mike Torres

    Kaylee and Family…..Having gone through chemo, radiation and a stem cell transplant I have experienced the power of prayer……Our GOD has a plan for you…..We do not know what, when or how…..We just have to continue to accept GOD’S grace and be strong in HIM.
    Cancer tests our faith…..Live the life GOD has given you…..HE has a great gift for you.

  13. hellen

    Dearly beloved! It is painful but you are not alone. God is with you in every circumstance. He actually knew what would happen long before each one of you were formed in your mothers’ womb. He said in Isaiah fear not for am with you. Bed not dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yea I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Though you walk through the fire, it will not burn you and through the water they will not overwhelm. David said ” my times are in your hands”. He may seem far away but he is with you. He actually experiences the pain and lightens it. He will carry you through it. Just be firm. He is with you. Our pastor here in Uganda also experienced what you are going through. According to his wife, it was traumatising but she observed that many other children experienced the same but her daughter’s response to the treatment was different .
    Sometime back I watched someone on TV from a centre that handles cancer patients and he said one of the treatments included hugging the patients twelve times a day, such that they feel loved. Receive my hugs please. stay blessed and smiling. Your miracle is on the way.

  14. Angel

    God Bless!!!
    All things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose.’ (Rom 8:28)
    ‘For I know the plans I have for you says the Lord, plans to prosper you not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.’ (Jer 29:11)
    5  Then, teaching them more about prayer, he used this story: “Suppose you went to a friend’s house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You say to him,  6  `A friend of mine has just arrived for a visit, and I have nothing for him to eat.’  7  And suppose he calls out from his bedroom, `Don’t bother me. The door is locked for the night, and my family and I are all in bed. I can’t help you.’  8  But I tell you this—though he won’t do it for friendship’s sake, if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence. [8] 
       9  “And so I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”  10  For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. (Luke 11)

  15. lovenia britten

    I haven’t been a subscriber to your devotionals for very long but they have touched me. Thank you for sharing your journey through cancer with your daughter Kaylee. You and your family are a blessing my prayers are with you

  16. Kate Lewis

    God Bless you all.
    You and all your family are in my prayers.
    You truly are a burning light for Jesus.

  17. Dan Arellano

    Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed. (Isaiah 53:4, 5 NIV84)

    Therefore, it is God’s will that Kaylee be healed. And all glory will go to Him.


  18. Ashley R

    Our God is such a good God. As I look at the beautiful faces of innocence, my heart smiles. These children are going through things that require strength, determination, faith, love and patience. So many of us complain and worry about little things. Yet God show us through kids how his love is everlasting. I read these devotionals everyday and everyday my strength is stronger. I cried the day I read this devotional and looked at these precious faces. I asked myself how I could question Gods purpose for me in my life. I looked at the picture above and thought these children are going through life changing experiences yet they smile with so much joy. They have joy to be alive and see another day. Something I have taken for granted. They smile even though they are battling cancer; even though the chemo therapy takes out their hair….they still smile with joy. My God!

    I talked with my family about Kaylee, someone I have never met physically. I asked that we all pray for her and all the other children in the world. God you are so good and I know there is a reason for your actions. I pray God that you can help Kaylee and her family gets through this. Kaylee I pray for your healing, in Jesus name amen.

  19. May Namutebi

    Steve and Family,

    Thanks for the update about your daughter, will continue praying for you! Jesus cares!

  20. carmelitaa

    Dear Pastor Steve and family,
    Ever since I read the sad news about kaylee’s cancer, I started to pray for her and your family . I cried when you mentioned about crying silently with her when you held her. as a parent and now a grandma I can relate how feel specially when your daughter is still so young and have to undergo such a great pain to recover. My prayer, love and care will always be with you through these difficult time . God really really cares for all of us, I know because I have been through a lot of problems, trials that I could not imagine if not by God’s grace. simply said, mine was nothing compared to yours, but then we assured that our Lord WILL NEVER LEAVE OUR SIDE BUT WILL ALWAYS CARRY US THOROUGH

  21. Debora Moore

    My Prayers go out for kaylee, and her family. God know see and care. Your faith will see you through. Cancer loose, being a child of God. this life and all the tears and pain will fade. kaylee will have a new body in the end. We all will according to God word in the book of Revelation 21.God Bless always.

  22. Hazel Bauerbach

    I went to my meeting today called Ripples.This a cancer support group who meets monthly,has devotions,sends cards and teddy bears out to victims.I mentioned Kaylee,asked for prayers and one of the cards we signed today to send to Kaylee.I was given a card and they would love to send Kaylee a teddy bear.They will send it as soon as I can give them your address.Just wanted prayers and to make Kaylee feel better. I hope this will be ok.Love and prayers Hazel

  23. Martha

    I am touchedand depressed. She is too youngto be going through all that pain. But God knows why.

    Just hang on there. It will come to pass and she will be healed. In Jesus Name, AMEN

  24. sasha

    My dear friends, I long to have great profound words or the prayer to move Gods hand to heal and remove suffering such as yours …
    I have none. I only possess love for you, respect and admiration for YOUR STRENGTH and FAITH.
    Thank you for being who you are, thank you for staying true to God in the face of such a time and test, thank you for your faithfulness to the ministry that has helped so many people , thank you for bringing thankfulness and humility to the surface of my families thoughts and prayers, thank you for showing us all that in the midst if personal trials how we can still share Christ thru a playing ministry as kaylee has or thru your ministry of reaching out to other parents as they would not have that if you did not give I feel guilty for being well, I am thankful to God that He has brought this humility to me to change my heart and the way I see everything.
    You are to be honored as true friends of the King, faithful servants of God and teachers of faith. May your hearts continue to have strength and confidence in faith in Jesus . May HIS angels have charge over you and attend you all.

  25. Lisa

    Steve,Kaylee and the rest of the family,

    At this time my sister Sherry is also battling cancer and I am her main care giver, last Friday 22nd March, 2013 she had he last ‘dose” of the second rounds of Chemo. She didn’t even want to go. So I know the task – many, many times I wish I can take the Chemo for her especially when the veins in her arms are hurting after the doctor had to “flush” it so that the medication can flow, or when she is in so much pain, “everywhere hurts” she says. Maybe I shouldn’t write these things to you because its not so encouraging, but i really want you to know that if we could we would have taken these medications and pain for you instead, but that can’t be. And I can tell you all of my experiences because I know you understand what I am going through, I hurt and sometimes I feel so down and I have to stand up and not let Sherry see my hurts. Well I love you all. And I love Sherry. And Kaylee both you and Sherry are the prettiest bald girls I have ever seen.


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