How Cancer Prepared Me For A Pandemic

How Cancer Prepared Me For A Pandemic

Journal entry by megan steele — Mar 18, 2020

I spent all of last weekend reading through my entire Caring Bridge journal. Going back to all those hard places of uncertainty, anxiety, fear for my life… Reading back through it all, I am reminded that no matter how dark it got for me, God was ever present. Always the lifter of my head. When I didn’t have the strength to look for Him, He showed Himself to me.

Here is an excerpt from an earlier post: I would like to take a minute and address what I know is a very real and valid question that a lot of people have. “Why would a good God give you cancer?” And I understand all the emotion, anger and frustration behind that question. The thing is, God didn’t give me cancer. Cancer is a result of living in a world where sin and death exist. God doesn’t want this for me. But he allowed it. And because he is a loving God, he is equipping me for what’s ahead. (“Each time he said, ‘My grace is sufficient for you. My power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9)

I still believe this. I believe we can replace “cancer” with “Covid-19”, or any other trauma. Notice I didn’t say He’d make it easy. I said He’d equip me for what’s ahead. Even if my outcome had been different. Here is a list of other things I worked through: Is control, comfort and safety my god, or is God my God? Who is the Author of my story? Am I holding the pen, or am I gonna let “He who began a good work in me, complete it?” Philippians 1:6nn-Be still and know He is God. This isn’t something I can control, so it’s time to just be still rather than frantic. Sometimes the only way to the other side of a thing is through it. Feel your feelings. They are valid. And God isn’t afraid of them or unaware of them, so honestly share them. Have it out with Him if necessary. And thank Him when necessary!



Even when you believe that God is in control, the 24 hours you are standing in can be very hard. I held on to Isaiah 40:31, “Those who trust in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. I have experienced this first-hand in the most exhausting fight I’ve ever fought. Remain teachable. Don’t shut down. If you keep an open mind, you can learn from the most unexpected places and people. Delegation~ I will do my part. God will do his part. The professionals will do their part.


I’m not naturally a patient person. Not being able to live my normal, fast-paced, busy life-style pressed patience into me. Not always comfortable, but so worth it. It taught me to slow down and not take little things for granted.nn-A little message from Luke 12:5: “Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?” I would argue that worry would likely steal moments from your life…


It’s ok to have tiny faith. When mine was the size of a dust molecule, I posted about “faith the size of a mustard seed” (Matthew 17:20) and when I went to work the next morning, a group of sweet souls blessed me with a locket FULL of mustard seeds that they had prayed over for me. I literally can’t even hold it together at this memory. When faith is tiny, others stand in the gap. It’s a powerful thing!! Thought life can be tricky. Especially when you are socially distanced. When I spent a lot of time in isolation, my thoughts would sometimes get dark. I decided to keep a gratitude journal and actively look for things to be thankful for. Even the smallest things. The sound of birds, the first sip of coffee, freshly laundered sheets… The more I looked for things and filled my journal, the more my whole demeanor changed. Mental health is important, especially during a crisis. Take care of it! Trust God on a cellular level. No matter what, there is always beauty for ashes. Nothing is wasted. So these are the priceless lessons I’ve learned. I think they are completely relevant for today’s situations. I’m not typically a “Bible-thumper” but this is my story, tried and true, and I’m stickin’ to it. If this resonates or somehow seems helpful, you have my full permission to share it. If this doesn’t make sense at all to you and you’d want to ask me anything, please feel free. I’m out of work until the end of April, so I’ve got plenty of time for you!

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