Former Hillsong worship leader Darlene Zschech recently finished one of the five rounds of chemotherapy she must undergo for breast cancer. Amid losing hair and having emotional ups and downs, she's being assured of God's love, which is "one of the sweetest parts of the journey."
"I am coming to the end of round one of chemo (I have 5 to go) and all I can say is, 'Grace, grace and more grace,'" Darlene wrote on her blog Friday. "I am learning to rest in every promise from Jesus. In fact, it's His word that is giving me the strength to inhale and exhale moment by moment."
The singer/songwriter announced she had cancer around last Christmas.
On Dec. 29, she wrote on her blog that the doctors discovered at a routine mammogram she had developed breast cancer. "Since then, it has been a whirlwind of appointments, scans and surgery."
"To be completely honest, this is not the kind of news anyone ever really wants to tell. However, I have seen two absolute miracles in my body thus far and I know there will be many more to come," she said at the time, and quoted Romans 5:3-5: "Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance, perseverance character and character HOPE. And hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us."
Zschech is most famous for penning the worship song "Shout to the Lord." After serving as worship pastor at the Pentecostal Hillsong Church in Sydney, Australia, for over a decade, Zschech stepped down to co-pastor another church with her husband Mark. The couple has been leading Hope Unlimited Church on the Central Coast of New South Wales since 2011.
Since her cancer announcement, Zschech has been writing about her journey. She has been finding strength in the many prayers directed toward her as she goes through six months of treatment.
This week, she lost her hair which she finds "very confronting." "It definitely makes me look sicker than I feel."
The gospel singer wrote that her husband jokes with her saying she can now save a lot of money she would otherwise be paying to hairdressers. And their daughters have named her wig "Betty." "I love my girls and they are keeping it light and laughter filled for me."
While this has been "a quite a ride on an emotional roller," she said, "I am assured of God's love for me. Truly this has been one of the sweetest parts of the journey. My beautiful Emmanuel is never far away. Our Friends, family and our beloved church family are amazing every day. I'm ever convinced that life was always designed to be done in true community. Good days and bad days yet always better together."
She said she has been using this time to write more songs and thoughts, which she'll share "when I am on the other side of this mountain."
"In fact, we are already planning a Thanksgiving service at our church in November, where we will record songs birthed during this season. We simply want to fill the place with praise for all that God has done," she added.