Today Markus begins his 12th round of chemotherapy. The past two weeks have been very pleasant for him. He’s only had to come to the hospital once for bloodwork and has been able to spend quality time with his family and friends. This past weekend he even went to the Okanagan with a few of his friends, and even though he couldn’t take part in surfing and wakeboarding it was so good that he could just take a break from the “cancer life” for a few days.
Today is also our 25th wedding anniversary. With the events of this year, we’ve had lots to reflect on. We live near a river and have spent many hours walking along its banks, and even swimming in its pools on hot summer days. The river is a place of tranquility for us and many a good conversation has been had in its presence.
The river reminds us that it is not always the straight path that leads us to where we must go.
At the beginning of 2021 life was moving forward with seemingly predictable certainty. Then, as Markus said in the first blog on this website, “God had other plans.” Since Markus’ diagnosis we have certainly felt called to uncertain paths, paths that we never anticipated travelling.
When we were married Tante Pat (Jennifer’s aunt) initiated what has become a tradition in the Siebenga family – filling a time capsule with memories that are then sealed up and only to be opened on said couples 25th wedding anniversary. We had a small celebration with family this past weekend, where a highlight was opening the time capsule. It was quite surreal to read messages that were written that long ago, some by people who have been with Jesus for many years already. We struggled through tears to read some of them, especially the lengthier note from Tante Pat which included these lines, “Life is not always easy or fair, but God’s promises always give us hope. We pray that today, tomorrow, and yesterday God watches over you, guides you on his path and may you continue to walk together on the path.”
We are so thankful that through trial God brings us closer to himself. He has not promised an easy life to anyone, but he has promised that in his strength we will persevere through those times when life is not easy or fair.
“In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” (1 Peter 1:6-9)
|Mateo with his "New to the Crew" outfit from Uncle Markus|
|A pre-dinner walk along the pier in White Rock|
|Jennifer's parents spoil us to a dinner at the Boathouse|
|A timeless message from Tante Pat's family|
|Even though he couldn't surf Markus still had a great time at the lake!|
|Reading messages from the time capsule|