Cinthya Miranda – Denver, Colorado … I wore my “Once an Adventurer, Always an Adventurer” shirt to my first doctor’s appointment. It’s a comfortable shirt. I found that I look nice in the color puce, I love that it was a gift from Lacinda Hopkins, and it’s a valuable mission tool as people sometimes ask, “What is an Adventurer?”

After so many tests, I finally had a diagnosis: Endometrial Hyperplasia/Carcinoma. Don’t bother looking it up; it’s just a fancy way to say, “precursor to uterine cancer.” Due to my results, I was scheduled for surgery.

I came home that day and lay on the couch to wait for my husband. Breaking the news to him was harder than receiving the news. My mind played games with memories I’m yet to have and would possibly miss: Liam graduating pre-school; Kaylon and Kyleigh getting baptized at the International Pathfinder Camporee; my husband, Daniel Gonzalez, making silly jokes or intelligent remarks during a sermon he prepared; of his smile that takes my breath away every time.

After he heard what I had to say and the initial shock went away, he said, “stop being silly.” My jaw dropped, but his remark brought me back to reality. Talk about God knowing the right person for you … He was right, I was being silly. I was dwelling on the cup-half-empty verses. I decided to smile even though my heart was breaking.

Daniel and I started walking together. I would have moments that we called ” waves.” Waves was my safe word that meant that I needed to get out of that place so everyone would not notice how ugly I cry. During these walks, we talked about life, treatment, and what I wanted done (and not done) in case treatments did not work.

One day, Daniel was sleeping, and I didn’t have the heart to wake him up so early. I went alone for my sunrise prayer walk, using my “Once an Adventurer, Always an Adventurer” shirt. I needed to ask God “what’s next?”

I walked to a small hill where a medium pine tree lives. It felt so inviting to sit down. As I was doing so, I felt a cool, gentil breeze envelop me. To some it was just that, wind. To me it felt like a hug with the promise that, regardless of the outcome, I would be fine. I felt a little more lighthearted, but still a little gloomy.

Suddenly, some hawks landed on the ground with a thud, fighting over some food. I had never jumped up so fast. Looking up to the sky, I knew God was just trying to help me snap out of the doom and gloom.

The day before my surgery, an opportunity came up to financially help a child in need of surgery. I was debating in my heart whether I should help her. I wanted to, but I also needed the money for my out-of-pocket surgery.

I gave the aunt $100. It’s very little compared to what the kiddo needed, but it was literally all I had left from all my appointments. I figured that God always provided, and she needed it more.

That very night, someone I wasn’t expecting told me to put the surgery bill on their card with lower interest rates so that I could make smaller payments. And the morning of my surgery, someone called me out of nowhere and helped me a little too. I didn’t even ask.

Yuris Robles brought me soup and a visit. My church family Three Angels, Lacinda Hopkins, Karolina Montano, Nataly Lerma, and Waleska Valdez texted me words of comfort and prayer.

My sister-in-law Silvia Sainz Gonzalez took Liam to school and brought him home so that I could have a moment to rest. The blessing I gave to the little girl came back to me twice fold. I still have a long way to go both financially and physically, but “do you see the blessings?”

I wore my “Once an Adventurer, Always an Adventurer” shirt one more time for my surgery. Now it wasn’t just a mission statement, it was for my own comfort. I needed to feel once again enveloped, and I knew that the ones that knew my situation would pray every moment for me.

After the surgery, I was in pain, but cancer free.

Confirmation of God’s love came to me one more time when my husband was taking me to an urgent CT scan because the doctors believed I was showing signs of sepsis. I felt apprehensive as I knew this meant a serious surgery that I wasn’t ready to go through again.

On the drive to the scan, I saw a car pull up with the license plate “JSHUA19.” I opened my Bible and read it out loud: Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go (Joshua 1:9, NIV).

The full force of God’s word hit me. I have experienced wonderful things throughout my life that let me know God is with me, but this takes precedent.

My “Once an Adventurer, Always an Adventurer” shirt became a symbol of comfort and of hope for me. It reminds me of what I went though, how I felt, what Jesus did for me, and of all those who took the time and prayed for me.

I’m thankful for the blessing the Lord gave me and continues to do so. I hope my story also blesses you. Know that, regardless of what you are going through, you are never alone, and you have me and Jesus. Please take a moment to pray for all our sisters going through some sort of hardship.

Cinthya Miranda is RMC Adventurer coordinator. Photos supplied.