George’s Journey

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By Mia Freneaux

    To meet Robin Waites is an experience.  Instead of one who has every right to be depressed by the world’s standards, you are faced with someone who exudes joy and the calm, no blessed, assurance of one with deep faith.  But I see I’m starting at the wrong end.  Robin, a Central resident, has authored (though she may say “edited”) a book based on the journaling of her husband, George.  George discovered in 2006 that he had pancreatic cancer.  Throughout his battle with the disease, he shared his thoughts and prayers on a blog site.  It is these musings that Robin has collected in a book: “George’s Journey, the writings of a man facing his own mortality with faith, hope and love“, a bare faced, honest walk through the valley of the shadow of death where page after page demonstrates how the Lord never left their side.  George shares his delight in a litter of baby rabbits and the melons growing in his garden, his steadfast belief that God is there for him and meeting all his needs, his revelations on scripture, in particular Psalm 91, and the everyday occurrences of a busy, full life that had no room for self pity. 

    Married for 16 years, Robin met George through a series of events that she describes as God’s perfect plan.  Declining to go on a church retreat with a friend, Robin went on a family vacation instead.  Rather than their usual mountain vacation, Robin and her parents went to the beach, the same beach, it turns out, that the retreat was being held at.  It was there she met George, and the rest is history.  She and George had 2 children, who were in middle school and high school when their father’s illness was diagnosed.  The book picks up with them facing George’s surgery at M.D. Anderson.  It is typical of him that as soon as he had recovered from the surgery, he borrowed a tractor and created a garden in their backyard.  Deciding that cancer would not run their lives, George and Robin continued with the business of living – ball games, careers, raising children.  George’s writings become a true “working out” of his faith – how this fits in God’s plan, how God can use it to His glory.  It is an amazing encouragement to anyone going through any trial in their lives.  The wisdom gleaned through suffering and joy is a treasure, “In suffering and tragedy is when character, faith and hope are established in our lives,” Robin says, “We received a supernatural grace and comfort.  You don’t know it’s true until you have to fall on it and it catches you.”

    Robin felt God leading her to share their story when she saw how many lives George had touched.  “Last Lectures” had just been released, but she felt that that book focused on living THIS life well.  Robin wanted to write about living this life while realizing that we are here to prepare for the next.  “This life is temporary,” she shares, “It’s not what it’s all about.  You realize this when you have someone on the other side.  The reality of the next life is appealing – it’s a door we get to walk through.”  She realized that the process was “bigger than just cancer and dying.  There was a message to be given and lives to be touched.”  Robin tried for months to write the book – not knowing how to begin or what format it should be in.  Then in March of 2009 she sat down and wrote it in 3 months straight, sitting on a couch at Central Perk.  “God’s timing was right,” she says, “It was the easiest thing I’d ever done.”  The publisher and cover then fell into place in a miraculous way, and the book was released in the fall of this year.  Robin has spent her time since then substitute teaching at Central High School and giving television and radio interviews and a book talk at the Central High library.  Though there are several copies of the book at the library, there is a waiting list to check it out.  The book can be purchased at Central Perk.  It is truly a Godsend for anyone going through difficult times and needing to know that God is faithful, our “refuge and our fortress.”

Below are photos of Goerge's Journey, and pictures of the author, submitted by Robin Waites.

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