This is a Test, Only a Test

Written Aug 10, 2013 10:36am by Cindy McMurry

Do you remember the Emergency Broadcast System tests of your childhood?  Those Public Service Announcements to warn us that there could be a catastrophe of one kind or another?  They would announce “This is a test of the Emergency Broadcast System.  This is only a test.  If this were a true emergency,” blah blah blah. Then there would be this terrible static noise that scared you, even though you knew it was coming AND it was “only a test.”

Several things about those tests bothered me as a child:
1.  The noise.  It seemed so ominous.
2.  The fact that there really might be a true emergency someday.
3.  Maybe they actually meant to hit the “true emergency” button and
only accidentally hit the “This is only a test button.”
4.  They almost always happened during the “After School Specials”,
and my Dad would be on his way home from work.  If we had a
“true emergency” it would be better if we were all together.  (You
thought I was just going to complain that it interrupted my TV
show,  right?)

I am a person of faith.  I love God.  I believe God is ever present and accounted for.  I believe God can, does and will make a difference in our lives.  I believe God will not forsake us.  I believe God does and will comfort us.  I believe God has, does and will forgive us.  I believe God has saved my life more than once and protects us from the evil one.

So here’s my dilemma.  I am having a test, “only a test” on Monday.  Tests make me anxious.  We don’t get immediate results.  PET Scans are known for false positives… I know this.  I’m a planner.  I like to have my finger on the pulse and, dare I say, control things.  I can’t control this.  I can’t be sure how quickly I will get the results.  I can’t be sure the radiologists who read it are not going to read a false positive.  I can’t be sure there are not other issues in my body, even though I don’t expect them.

This test, requires fasting from any number of foods and medications, some for 24 hours.  I have an appointment with my girl Bethany the morning of the fast.  I will drive 4 hours and not be able to munch or have coffee to keep me awake.  John cannot be with me.  I’m really, really tired.  All the “this is only a test” nightmares of my childhood seem to flood me with fear.

It’s silly, I know it is.  First of all, the God who created the universe is with me.  He is on my side.  I’m a big girl and being fearful of something that “is just a test” doesn’t make much sense.  Every year when it’s time to have my bone scan, I feel the anxiety push up within me.  I hear a little voice begin to whisper, “Maybe this time it will be back.”  It’s like soul torment.

I listen for the “still, small voice” that speaks peace  and courage to me and trust in my heart that God’s got this.  And God does have this.  PET Scan, CT Scan, surgery, cancer Maffucci Syndrome, God’s got this.  This is really “just a test” and while it feels like a “true emergency” in light of the bigger picture, of the things to come, this is just small potatoes.  God’s Got It!

“And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake:  And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.”  1 Kings 19

As the world shakes around us, and the storms of our life seem to overwhelm us, we pray that each of us would stop, listen and hear the still small voice that will give us peace.

We love you,
Cindy and John


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