I have a new ritual thanks to our oldest daughter. She gave me a small devotional book for Christmas that fits perfectly in the pocket of my Bible case. Each daily page contains a short message about living in peace and without fear. Meaningful  words. I can read it in a couple of minutes and it’s accompanied by two or three Bible verses to look up. I have always wanted to adopt the practice of spending my first  waking minutes with God’s word and this was exactly what I needed, the impetus to begin. Small. Brief. Inspirational. A baby step in the right direction. Sort of a spiritual power breakfast.

After a few weeks, I added a little more time working on the readings  for my current Bible Study by Beth Moore on the gifts of the spirit called Living Beyond Ourselves. When I do this, I can stay up to date on the study with no cramming and I enjoy much deeper comprehension. I began feeling exceptionally in tune with God through this practice. He is so good.

Now I see it has been an intense training program,  part of a God-given preparation process for an unexpected plot twist. The call saying, “Mom, it’s cancer.” 

Nothing can prepare you for those words except the supernatural sense of trust and peace that comes from being in tune with the Holy Spirit moving in our life. Instantly I knew God would use this to unleash a wave of blessings beyond what we can comprehend in our humanness. 

Almost immediately, Christian friends began heaping prayers and kind gestures on us. A huge, heartfelt outpouring of loving friendship born from a common bond of faith showered us with strength. It is almost impossible to describe the power of their loving support. Women friends in particular excel at this open and unselfish sharing and we are in awe of their generosity. Our daughter’s friends have been absolutely amazing. They know the depth of her faith.

We are just beginning this journey, this process of healing. As I write this we are not sure yet of the course of treatment. The answers will come within the next few days. This we do know, though, that through the boundless love of God we will be supported by a small army of prayer sisters and brothers to give us the peace and grace we need to conquer our fears. Knowing we never walk alone will allow us all to step confidently into the future.


Betty Streff

Betty Streff began her career as a customer service representative for a large corporation in Omaha. Four years later she found herself to be a farm wife in a small rural community with limited opportunities for women. After a humbling self assessment, she listed her assets as talents for sketching, sewing, and the natural ability to strike up conversations with complete strangers. Using these and her optimistic nature, she began stitching up some bibs and pillows for a craft show, who wouldn't? Over the next 25 years she became a serial entrepreneur obsessed with studying faith, spirituality, leadership, motivation, and management as she developed her businesses. Betty has spent the last few years working in corporate America in the hospitality and manufacturing world and she continues to immerse herself in the study of what makes people tick. The explosive growth in the relatively recent science of positive psychology fascinates her. Betty devours everything she can find on the subject and is especially intrigued with people who thrive no matter the circumstances and in discovering ways that happiness and optimism can be learned. She is currently exploring ways of sharing and cultivating the exciting possibilities with both individuals and businesses. She and her husband Steve have been married 45 years and are blessed with 2 incredible daughters, 2 fantastic sons-in-law and 6 amazing grandchildren.