One of the great blessings that came while going through this intense trial was the constant words of comfort that were given to us. The scriptures became vital in dealing with our challenges and concerns. Many times we would be guided to verses of scripture that we felt were meant for us, or as we were having our daily devotional certain lines or phrases from the scriptures would stand out accompanied by feelings that the Lord was speaking directly to us. Other times something from a talk or a song would touch our hearts. Also, thoughts and feelings would come which we recorded in our journals.
The story of our journey would not be complete without including some of these things that either gave us direction or that calmed our troubled hearts. We are including some of them here with the hope that they might benefit those of you who are going through your own trials. We testify that our loving Father in Heaven and His Son, Jesus Christ are mindful of each of us. Their love for us is real and the promise is “Draw near unto me and I will draw near unto you; seek me diligently and ye shall find me, ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.” For us this was a reality.
February 17-24 – We learned of the cancer in Mark’s lungs and liver. Biopsy of liver was on the 24th. At this point there was great anxiety as to how to treat, and when to tell Rachel who was in Ecuador.
February 25 – (Ane) “And inasmuch as they are faithful unto me, it shall be made known unto them what they shall do.” Doctrine & Covenants 52:4**
(Mark) “Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; … God shall be with you forever and ever.” Doctrine & Covenants 122:9* “For with God nothing shall be impossible.” Luke 1:37
February 27 – (Ane) “…I give unto you a new commandment, that you may understand my will concerning you; Or, in other words, I give unto you directions how you may act before me, that it may turn to you for your salvation. I, the Lord, am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise… Peace be with you; my blessings continue with you.” Doctrine & Covenants 82:8-10, 19, 23**
February 28 – (Ane) I read this scripture before the events of the day began.“… Thus saith the Lord, Be not afraid of the words which thou hast heard…” 2 Kings 19:6 Mark got the call to go to the emergency room. We learned of the tumor in his heart as well as the results of the PET scan which was “stage 4b Metastatic Melanoma with innumerable nodules in both lungs, one on the liver, one in the heart, one in the lower abdomen, one in the muscle tissues of the back, thighs and hip.”
“Then he turned his face to the wall, and prayed unto the Lord, saying, I beseech thee, O Lord, remember now how I have walked before thee in truth and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in thy sight. And Hezekiah wept sore.” 2 Kings 20:2-3 “…I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will heal thee: …And I will add unto thy days fifteen years.” 2 Kings 20:5-6 (We didn’t know if this applied to Mark, but it helped us realize that we certainly could petition the Lord for more time.)
March 2 – (Mark) “Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him:” Job 13:15
“They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31
March 8 – Waiting for all test results before making decisions regarding therapies to use.
(Ane) “…I will go before your face. I will be on our right hand and on your left and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angles round about you, to bear you up.” Doctrine & Covenants 84:88*
(Mark) “Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until these calamities be overpast.” Psalm 57:1
March 10 – (Ane) We went to the temple and I prayed for an extension of Mark’s life. By the time we left I felt that it would be granted, but for how long I did not know – a few more months, a year, or years?
March 11 – (Ane) Mark gave me a Priesthood blessing. In it I was told that Father knows my thoughts and the intents of my heart, and that I would have an extended time with my husband.
March 20 – (Ane) “Angles speak by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore, they speak the words of Christ. Wherefore, I said unto you, feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do.” 2 Nephi 32:3*
“For behold, again I say unto you that if ye will enter in by the way, and receive the Holy Ghost, it will show unto you all things what ye should do.” 2 Nephi 32:5*
March 22 – Ane was in Ecuador with Rachel and after Mark had gone home.
(Ane) “For behold, I am God; and I am a God of miracles; and I will show unto the world that I am the same yesterday, today, and forever; and I work not among the children of men save it be according to their faith.” 2 Nephi 27:23*
March 24 – Mark started taking Zelboraf.
March 27 – (Mark) “…let your hearts be comforted…all flesh is in mine hands; be still and know that I am God.” Doctrine & Covenants 101:16**
March 30 – (Ane) “…Look unto God with firmness of mind, and pray unto him with exceeding faith, and he will console you in your afflictions and he will plead your cause…” Jacob 3:1*
April 1 -- One week of Zelboraf and the cough is gone!
April – (Ane) “…take especial care of your family from this time, henceforth and forever.” Doctrine & Covenants 126:3**
April 11 – (Mark) “For after much tribulation…cometh the blessing.” Doctrine & Covenants 103:12**
April 14 – Echocardiogram showed that the tumor in his heart had shrunk to 35% of its original size.
April 15 – (Mark) “…I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand...” Hymn – How Firm a Foundation taken from Isaiah 41:10 (Those words brought tears to my eyes as we sang this hymn during church. This was the first time I felt that I would be healed. This particular hymn has been a favorite for many years, especially the words, “Fear not, I am with thee; oh, be not dismayed, For I am thy God and will still give thee aid.” They have given me comfort during many times of trial.)
April 17 – (Ane) “I have loved you, saith the Lord…” Malachi 1:2* “…prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” Malachi 3:10* “…my soul filled with joy…I remember his merciful arm which he extended towards me.” Alma 29:10*
April 20 - (The day before the Precoa trip to Maui.) “Therefore, I, the Lord, have suffered you to come unto this place; Therefore, verily I say unto you, lift up your voices unto this people; speak the thoughts that I shall put into your hearts, and you shall not be confounded before men; For it shall be given you in the very hour, yea, in the very moment, what ye shall say. But a commandment I give unto you, that ye shall declare whatsoever thing ye declare in my name, in solemnity of heart, in the spirit of meekness, in all things. And I give unto you this promise, that inasmuch as ye do this the Holy Ghost shall be shed forth in bearing record unto all things whatsoever ye shall say… And I will give unto him power to be mighty in testimony. Therefore, continue your journey and let your hearts rejoice; for behold, and lo, I am with you even unto the end. Therefore, let your hearts be comforted; for all things shall work together for good” Doctrine & Covenants 100:4-8, 10, 12, 15**
April 21 - May 1 – Precoa trip to Maui. His heart went into A-Fib on the 24th and we spent the night in the hospital. At the end of the Celebration Event on the 26th Mark told everyone about his cancer. We were surrounded by love and support.
May 2 – We found out that Mark had Pericarditis and that his heart was in A-Flutter/ A-Fib.
May 4-20 – Trip to Israel (The plane ride there was miserable for Mark.)
May 7 – The worst day yet – Mark was very sick and couldn’t even take the meds that he had to have. Dr. Farley changed the pill regiment and he and Garland gave Mark a Priesthood blessing. He was reminded that we were in a land of miracles. The next day was SO much better! The rest of the trip was good even though he was often tired and couldn’t do much walking.
May 12 – (Ane) – Mark was asked to read scriptures dealing with the healing of Lazarus in our evening meeting after visiting the tomb that day. When he read this verse there was a feeling that perhaps Mark would be healed. It, at least, gave me hope. “…This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of God, that the son of God might be glorified thereby.” John 11:4
May 21 – An X-ray showed that the masses in the lungs were nearly resolved. His heart is still irregular, but not as fast – 100 BPM
May 27 – (Ane) “Hearken unto the voice of the Lord your God, while I speak unto you…my daughter; …. A revelation I give unto you concerning my will…And the office of thy calling shall be for a comfort unto my servant…thy husband, in his afflictions, with consoling words, in the spirit of meekness.” Doctrine & Covenants 25: 1-2, 5**
May 28 – (Mark) “…he that hath faith in me to be healed, and is not appointed unto death, shall be healed.” D&C 42:48** “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1
June 6 – (Ane) Henry B. Eyring’s talk “Mountains to Climb”. Here are several quotes that I marked:
“…great blessing could come from adversity to more than compensate for any cost.”
“If the foundation of faith is not embedded in our hearts, the power to endure will crumble.”
“If we have faith in Jesus Christ, the hardest as well as the easiest times in life can be a blessing.”
“…we can live with perfect hope and a feeling of peace.”
“The Savior has promised angels on our left and our right to bear us up. And He always keeps His word.”
Aug 2 – Echocardiogram
Aug 6 – Results show the large tumor in the heart is GONE! Dr. Urba reduced the dosage of Zelboraf 25 % to help with side effects.
August 5 – (Ane) “…for I do know that whosoever shall put their trust in God shall be supported in their trials, and their troubles, and their afflictions, and shall be lifted up at the last day.” Alma 36:3* “And I have been supported under trials and troubles of every kind, yea, and in all manner of afflictions, yea, God has delivered me…I do put my trust in him, and he will still deliver me.” Alma 36:27* “… put your trust in God…ye shall be delivered out of your trials, and your troubles, and your afflictions, and ye shall be lifted up at the last day.” Alma 38:5* “…I did cry out unto the Lord Jesus Christ for mercy…I did cry unto him and I did find peace to my soul.” Alma 38:8*
August 27 – (Mark) “Therefore we did pour out our souls in prayer to God, that he would strengthen us and deliver us … Yea, and it came to pass that the Lord our God did visit us with assurances that he would deliver us; yea, insomuch that he did speak peace to our souls, and did grant unto us great faith, and did cause us that we should hope for our deliverance in him. And we did take courage...” Alma 58:10-12*
“Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not.” Doctrine & Covenants 6:36**
September 9 – Both PET and MRI indicates no cancerous tumors are evident.
September 14 – Catheter Ablation was successful as Mark’s heart is now beating normally.
October 14 – (Mark) "whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, which is right, believing that ye shall receive, behold it shall be given unto you." 3 Nephi 18:20*
October 22 – Mark wrote in his journal: “I will go where you want me to go”
Late 2012 to early 2013 --Don’t remember the exact date (Ane)
“Therefore, he giveth this promise unto you, with an immutable covenant that they shall be fulfilled; and all things wherewith you have been afflicted shall work together for your good, and to my name’s glory, saith the Lord.” Doctrine & Covenants 98:3**
“And inasmuch as ye are humble and faithful and call upon my name, behold, I will give you the victory.” Doctrine & Covenants 104:82**
January 1 – (Mark) “And I, the Lord, give unto them a promise, that the destroying angel shall pass by them, as the children of Israel, and not slay them. Amen.” Doctrine & Covenants 89:21**
January 22 – Stopped the Zelboraf – the medicine that causes tumors to shrink or in our case to actually go away! J
January 25 – PET scan
January 30 – (Ane) Waiting to hear results of PET “And, inasmuch as they are faithful, I will multiply blessings upon them and their seed after them, even a multiplicity of blessings.” Doctrine & Covenants 104:33**
January 30 – Results of PET shows no tumors.
February 17 – One year since that 1st X-ray!
February 23 – (Ane) “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.” Romans 8:11
“…whoso is faithful unto the obtaining these two priesthoods of which I have spoken, and the magnifying their calling, are sanctified by the Spirit unto the renewing of their bodies.” Doctrine & Covenants 84:33** (accompanied by the feeling that this was for Mark NOW)
February 24 – (Ane) “For I, the Lord, have put forth my hand to exert the powers of heaven; ye cannot see it now, yet a little while and ye shall see it, and know that I am…” Doctrine & Covenants 84:119**
March 4 – Appointment with Dr. Urba – Decisions about what to do next!
March 5 – (Ane) “For I will reveal myself from heaven with power and great glory…” D&C 29:11**
March 12 – (Ane) “For there is a time appointed for every man, according as his works shall be.”
D&C 121:25* “…Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less…fear not…God shall be with you forever and ever.” Doctrine & Covenants 122:9**
March 13 – (Ane) “…all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good.” D&C 122:7**
“…Lift up your heads and be of good comfort…I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions…the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease…submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord…Be of good comfort, for on the morrow I will deliver you out of bondage.” Mosiah 24:13-16*
March 15 – Chest X-ray shows no tumor growth. Side effects of Zelboraf subsiding.
March 19 – Mark wrote:“Fear not for I am with you” is what comes to me anytime I think about the cancer. I know that He loves me and has my best interest at heart.
March 31 Easter Sunday – (Mark) “In those days was Hezekiah sick unto death. And the prophet Isaiah the son of Amoz came to him, and said unto him, Thus saith the Lord, Set thine house in order; for thou shalt die, and not live. Then he turned his face to the wall, and prayed unto the Lord, saying, I beseech thee, O Lord, remember now how I have walked before thee in truth and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in thy sight. And Hezekiah wept sore. And it came to pass, afore Isaiah was gone out into the middle court, that the word of the Lord came to him, saying, Turn again, and tell Hezekiah the captain of my people, Thus saith the Lord, the God of David thy father, I have heard thy prayer, I have seen thy tears: behold, I will heal thee: on the third day thou shalt go up unto the house of the Lord. And I will add unto thy days fifteen years; and I will deliver thee and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city for mine own sake, and for my servant David's sake. And Isaiah said, Take a lump of figs. And they took and laid it on the boil, and he recovered.” 2 Kings 20:1-7
April 1 – (Mark) “And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.” Ether 12:6*
April 26 - May 5 – Precoa Trip
May 8 – (Ane) I was considering all the things I should be doing, now that my focus was not entirely on Mark’s health. What is the most important? “Go your way whithersoever I will, and it shall be given you by the Comforter what you shall do and whither you shall go.” Doctrine & Covenants 31:11**
June 4 – (Mark) “And again, to some it is given to have faith to be healed;” Doctrine & Covenants 46:19**
June 10 – (Ane) “And all saints who remember to keep and do these sayings, walking in obedience to the commandments, shall receive health in their navel and morrow to their bones…And shall run and not be weary, and walk and not faint. And I, the Lord, give unto them a promise, that the destroying angel shall pass by them, as the children of Israel, and not slay them. Amen.” Doctrine & Covenants 89:18, 20-21**
June 11 – (Ane) “Thy bruise is incurable, and thy wound is grievous…For I will restore health unto thee, and I will heal thee of thy wounds, saith the Lord. And ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.” Jeremiah 30:12, 17, 22
June 13 – (Mark) I had some coughing and felt concerned so was praying about it. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.” Proverbs 3:5
June 20 – (Ane) “And if ye are purified and cleansed from all sin, ye shall ask whatsoever you will in the name of Jesus and it shall be done. But know this, it shall be given you what you shall ask…” Doctrine & Covenants 50:29-30**
July 3 – (Ane) “Behold, I, the Lord, have brought you together that the promise might be fulfilled, that the faithful among you should be preserved and rejoice together…I, the Lord, promise the faithful and cannot lie…receive the blessing…from the hand of the Lord, with a thankful heart in all things.” Doctrine & Covenants 62:6-7**
July 15 – (Ane) “For behold, I will show unto you that they were brought into bondage, and none could deliver them but the Lord their God, yea, even the God of Abraham and Isaac and of Jacob. And it came to pass that he did deliver them, and he did show forth his mighty power unto them, and great were their rejoicings.” Mosiah 23:23-24*
September 7 – (Ane) “The Savior is the worker of miracles. He is the great healer. He is our example, our light, even in the darkest moments, and He shows us the right way. Let us follow Him. Let us rise up to our role and become healers by serving God and our fellowmen.” Dieter F. Uchtdorf's talk "Four Titles"
November 13 – (Ane for Mark) “…wherefore your mission is not yet full. Nevertheless, ye are blessed…And now continue your journey…only be faithful, and declare glad tidings.” Doctrine & Covenants 62:2-5**
November 30 – (Ane) “And behold, we are again delivered out of the hands of our enemies. And blessed is the name of our God; for behold, it is he that has delivered us; yea, that has done this great thing for us.” Alma 57:35*
December 18 – (Ane) “Yea, they did remember how great things the Lord had done for them, that he had delivered them from death…and from all manner of afflictions, and he had delivered them out of the hands of their enemies.” Alma 62:50*
We have been recipients of a miracle, and how grateful we are. The faith and prayers of so many – members of our family, members of our church, work associates, and many dear friends – have blessed our lives in miraculous ways. With all our hearts we thank you.
* From – The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ, a record of God’s dealings with the inhabitants of ancient America (2000 BC – 400 AD).** From – The Doctrine and Covenants, a collection of revelations and inspired declarations given for the establishment and regulation of the Church of Jesus Christ in the last days (1830 AD – 1978 AD).