October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
It is a wonderful time to reach out to women in our group or community to acknowledge and support those suffering with breast cancer. Today we will talk about how the Lord cares for the brokenhearted and bandages their wounds.
Scripture: Psalm 147:1-4
Decorate the room with white tablecloths and pink table decorations such as balloons or flowers and pink or white hearts printed with the theme scripture verse. Make a pink ribbon pin for the women as a reminder to support those dealing with breast cancer.
Put together a report on breast cancer using the following resources:
National Breast Cancer Foundation—nationalbreastcancer.org
American Cancer Society- https://www.cancer.org/cancer/breast-cancer.html
- Invite someone from the American Cancer Society to speak to the group or arrange for a cancer survivor to share her experience. This will make the subject more personal and help the women to connect with others.
- Create a “Do You Know” worksheet or game with information about breast cancer.
- Prepare handwritten notes or cards to send with the comfort pillows.
Craft: Comfort Heart Pillows
These pillows are meant to be used to ease pain for people recovering from mastectomies. They can be used under seatbelts and to lean against to alleviate pressure and soreness. For complete instructions visit: Ashleycrafted.com and click on the service projects in the scroll down menu or https://ashleycrafted.com/2019/03/27/comfort-heart-pillows-for-breast-cancer-patients/. Click on “Breast Cancer Pillow” to find a pattern, instructions and a supply list, as well as printable tags to add to the pillows. There are other patterns on Pinterest.
These pillows could be made for specific individuals whom the women know, or call a local hospital and ask if they could be distributed to patients recovering from mastectomy surgery. Spend some time in prayer over the women who will receive the pillows.
Read Psalm 147: 1–4 from The Message.
Did you notice the phrase in the middle of this portion of scripture? “He (The Lord) heals the broken hearted and bandages their wounds.”
Many of us have been affected by cancer. Either we have had it, or we know a family member who has. Cancer sucks! It sucks the life out of a person. It can suck the joy out of our heart. It can suck the peace out of our minds and can lead to depression and anger. But the Bible reminds us that our joy is in the Lord. Listen to the words of Nehemiah 8:10 (NIV): “Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!”
Even if we have not been affected by cancer, we have all had our hearts broken and experienced wounds. Some of us today are carrying around wounds from years ago. We have trouble praising God because we are still licking those wounds. When we are angry or focus on the bad around us, we have trouble praising God in our present situation.
Praising the Lord when we don’t feel like it is offering a sacrifice of praise. The writer of Hebrews talks about this: “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise” (Heb. 13:15). It doesn’t say to offer praise only when things are going well. We are told to continually offer a sacrifice of praise.
The writer of Psalm 147 reminds us to let it go, to remember who God is, and what He is capable of doing. This is the same God that counts the stars and names each one. He goes on to remind us how great our God is and that His strength knows no limits. “He heals the broken hearts and bandages their wounds. He counts the stars and assigns each a name. Our Lord is great, with limitless strength; we’ll never comprehend what He knows and does” (Ps. 147: 2-6, MSG).
So often we hold onto the bad—bad situations, the bad break–up, the past hurts. All of this begins to eat away at our hearts. Sometimes we feel that life hasn’t treated us fairly. We have been dealt a bad hand. We have family and friends who are sick, or maybe you are living with a serious illness. We allow our resentment to make us angry and bitter, and we blame God. This keeps us from becoming what God wants us to be.
We read in Proverbs 4:23, NIRV: “Above all else, guard your heart. Everything you do comes from it.” When you’re feeling low or defeated, don’t let those feelings steal your joy. Go to the scriptures and cling to the promises of God. “God is our refuge and strength, an ever–present help in trouble” (Psalms 46: 1, NIV). “The name of the Lord is a fortified tower; the righteous run to it and are safe” (Prov. 18:10). “Do not grieve, the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Neh. 8:10 NIV).
So whatever hand you have been dealt, “guard your heart.” Cling to the promise that God can heal the broken hearted and bandage your wounds.