April 1, 2023

Praise the Lord

1.6 min read| Published On: April 1st, 2023|

By James Combs

Praise the Lord

1.6 min read| Published On: April 1st, 2023|

God has helped me through a difficult cancer battle. 

I was diagnosed with esophageal cancer in October 2021. 

Guess what? I should be dead. 

That’s right. A study of patients with my type of esophageal cancer (neuroendocrine carcinoma) concluded that the mean survival time was 8.5 months. As of this writing, I’m still alive at 17 months. 

I don’t credit myself. I don’t credit my doctor. I don’t credit modern medicine. 

I give all the praise and glory to God. 

God is great. He has always listened to my prayers. He has always been there for me in times of great need. He has helped me endure many life challenges. 

I remember praying to Him when I was enrolled in a speech class in ninth grade. Honestly, I’d rather sleep in a bunk bed under a sumo wrestler than give a classroom speech. It scared me to death. But God pulled me through. In fact, I earned the “Most Improved Student” award in that class. 

I remember praying to him in 1991 when my grandmother died. I was 15 and had never lost a close relative. It was the first time I was forced to cope with grief and death. Ultimately, God helped me endure. 

I prayed to God in 2018 when my father was diagnosed with advanced lung cancer. I did not want him to suffer a slow, painful death. Fortunately, God did not allow that to happen. My dad had a stroke and died 24 hours later. 

These are just a few examples of how God has answered so many of my prayers. I only regret being so flawed when he is so perfect. 

I may still die of cancer. After all, no cancer patient is ever out of the woods. Even if I do, I still thank God for the extra time He has given me. Over the past few months, I’ve really bonded with my adorable niece, Charlotte, who is almost 2. I’ve also strengthened my relationship and spent valuable time with my mom, who has gone above and beyond to help me through this difficult time. And, of course, I’ve seen the goodness of mankind through the people who still call or text to see how I’m doing. And I’ve been able to spend extra time with my awesome work family. 

Thank you, God, for everything you’ve done for me. Your love is infinite and unconditional. 

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About the Author: James Combs

Akers Media Group's James Combs has been a staff writer for several local publications since August 2000. He has had the privilege of interviewing some of Lake County's many fascinating residents—from innovative business owners to heroic war veterans—and bringing their stories to life. A resident of Lake County since 1986, James recently embarked on a journey to lead a healthier lifestyle. He has lost 60 pounds and walks nearly five miles a day. In his spare time, he enjoys target shooting, skeet shooting and watching his beloved Kentucky Wildcats!

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