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Making Sacrifices We Didn't Want to Make: Bravely Following Jesus No Matter the Cost

By Kristy Mikel

Brave Women Series - Kristy's Story

2022 is a year I will not soon forget. Maybe that’s the case for many. For me, it felt like the year that tried to break me.

“Kristy,” came my mom’s voice through the phone. “Dad’s surgery is scheduled for January 24th.” We’d received news about his diagnosis back in October 2021—cancer. I hate that word. But the doctors seemed confident they could successfully remove it all without complications. Still, their confidence didn’t lessen the agony of the wait.

The earliest available date for surgery was January of the following year—over 3 long months away. Three months where the cancer could continue spreading for all we knew. Our comfort? Knowing there were a handful of other families walking through the same journey. We all held our breath, waiting for a cancellation to open up an earlier date or for the day of surgery to arrive. What a terrible club to be part of.

I should fill in a few other details. As all of this was unfolding, I was over 9,000 miles away, living in Thailand. I’m a full-time missionary, so this has been my home for 6.5 years. And even if I wanted to be home with my family during this time, I couldn’t. Covid travel restrictions and visa limitations in Thailand made it impossible. It felt like a perfect storm.

Those months felt agonizing. My dad wasn’t acting differently, so it didn’t seem we had much to worry about. But I’ve heard so many horror stories about cancer. It’s a silent killer. What were we supposed to watch for?