Stories & Testimonials

Read stories of cancer survivors who have greatly benefited from the presence of faith in their lives.

Featured Survivor Story

Do You Live A Life of Success?

by Matt Ellefson - Sioux Falls, SD

September - 2017

Before I was diagnosed with late stage cancer in 2009, I really thought I was living a life of success. I had recently remarried, had five wonderful and talented children, had a great paying career, always drove a new car, and had a lot of friends. My wife and I would travel and explore life together, spend time with our family, and party with our friends. We struggled from time to time, but we were do better than most so I thought all was good. I was bringing home a bigger paycheck than most of my friends and I really thought I was living a good life. A life of success. But, what really does success mean?

Success

noun   suc·cess   \  sək-ˈses \
: degree or measure of succeeding

How do you measure success? Does the amount of money you have compared to others mean you’re a success? Does living in a very large house determine success? Does having a more expensive car than any others around you mean you’re a success?
These may be worldly or short-term measures of success, but they’re not Godly or eternal measures of success.

Success is not a comparison of how you rank among others. And it’s not necessarily the accumulation of wealth. Success is fulfilling what God created you to do. Fulfilling it day by day, season by season, challenge by challenge, blessing by blessing. We are all in the process of whom we will become. Embrace your setbacks, disappointments, and delays. Know that they’re a valuable part of success. Challenges don’t happen to you, they happen for you. No matter where you are along your path of life, if you had attempted to be here earlier, you wouldn’t have been prepared.  All of your life experiences, both challenges and blessings, are part of God’s plan to get you prepared for what’s next.

Having the courage to be the person God created you to be and fearlessly going wherever God sends you = SUCCESS.

 

Do you have an inspirational story of how faith helped you face cancer without fear? Let us know, we’d love to hear from you.

August featured story

August - Featured Survivor Story (a user favorite from the past)

Matt Ellefson - Sioux Falls, SD

August - 2014

As I sit here, contemplating the next stage in my cancer journey, I’m humbled by the continuous support and love I’ve received from all of you along the way. Thank you for your thoughts. Thank you for your support. And thank you for your prayers.

On July 22nd, while in Colorado for my scheduled checkup, I learned that my cancer was back. But before you worry, it’s only making a small appearance. A recurrence is not something completely unexpected for someone living with a terminal disease however, for the last 20 months I’ve been blessed with clean scans.

This has been the longest period of time without a recurrence since it all began in late 2009. After each three-month scan, my wife and family came to expect my text upon leaving my doctor’s office that read “NED!” (No Evidence of Disease). This time it was different; “Not exactly what we were hoping for, but manageable.”

After the initial shock faded, I found myself in battle mode again. I was ready to discuss details with my amazing medical team and determine the best plan of action for my third cancer recurrence. I’m stronger and more prepared than I’ve ever been since this all began, so fear is nowhere to be found.

Over the past five years, I’ve experienced some incredible highs and devastating lows while surviving cancer. And because of that, I’ve learned many things:

• Faith is far stronger than fear.
• Answers to your prayers don’t always come in the manner you expect them.
• Each challenge you face only prepares you for the next.
• All it takes to face this disease is all you’ve got.

But most importantly, I’ve come to learn that when God is all you’ve got, you have everything you need.

My faith in combination with complete confidence in my medical team has allowed me to continue living fully. I live each day as it comes and spend genuine quality time with the people I love. My mind isn’t clouded by worry or anxiety or guilt that I’m not doing enough. I feel a complete and utter peace. I love life, I love my life, and I have a lot to live for.

And I want this for you. I want this for all of my friends and people who are facing cancer and difficult times in their lives. I’ll be the first to admit that achieving peace and confidence in God’s plan isn’t easy, I still struggle with it myself. But I try to remember that God doesn’t promise it will be easy, He just promises it will be worth it.

These feelings bring me back to my mission – which is to help others remove fear from their cancer journey. It’s my hope that SURVIVEiT®, with its combination of survivor knowledge, medical expertise and faith resources, will be exactly the tool you need. A tool that will provide you with the direction you deserve and connect you with those who have walked your walk. Most importantly, I believe SURVIVEiT® will be a tool for bringing you and your family peace during the battle of your life.

Fear is an emotion that takes too much and all too often controls our lives. It is my sincere hope that by working together and lifting each other up, we will create a world free from the fear of cancer.

 

Do you have an inspirational story of how faith helped you face cancer without fear? Let us know, we’d love to hear from you.