Waves of Grace was placed on our hearts on a drive home from a vacation at the beach about a year after my (Jennifer) mom passed away from stage IV gastric cancer. It’s hard to even put into words a description about Waves because the whole idea of it leaves me speechless. Let’s start by telling you what the beach meant to my family when I was a child. We traveled to Orange Beach, AL, every summer for vacation. My parents had a condo there and we’d take off and go whenever we wanted. It was truly a blessing to be able to go on vacation to the beach and not pay for accommodations. I can’t tell you how many times I stood in awe at the edge of the ocean and completely forgot about everything I had left behind at home. For a moment, my head was clear, my heart full of beauty and family, and I just felt nothing but gratitude to the Lord for creating such a beautiful scene. We truly believe that the beauty of the ocean can heal. We believe there is complete healing in Jesus. We want cancer patients and their families to leave cancer at home and experience rest, relaxation, hope, and peace, and return renewed ready for anything. Between my mom’s chemotherapy treatments, she and my dad would take off and head to the beach. She would return strong and ready for the next round of chemo the following weeks. Mom always said she felt closest to God at the beach. There’s just something about the ocean, waves, sand, shells, and sun on your face that just breathes life.
"Come to me all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you for I am gentle in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light"
- Matthew 11:28-30
We’ve already received donations and people have reached out to us in various ways from graphic design services, to donating time at their beach home, to awesome fundraising ideas. There are many great organizations raising money to find a cure for cancer. We are behind them 100%! We say please support them where you feel led. Let’s find a cure! Why donate to Waves of Grace? We believe that cancer patients/survivors and their families need a break from cancer or maybe a place to celebrate remission, Amen! Cancer takes a toll on everyone in the family and unfortunately finances as well. We want to provide a place to rest, relax, and celebrate life and family away from doctors, treatments, and hospitals. Mike and I don’t have the cure for cancer, but we believe there is healing in Him, rest, family, friends, laughter, and the beach. It’s supernatural and so beautiful. Please contact us if you feel moved to give monetarily, or offer any ideas or services you think would help Waves of Grace.
Debbie Massengill lost her battle with cancer in July 2012. I don’t even like saying lost. It’s a victory to be healed here on earth and it’s a victory to see Jesus’ face and be healed and whole again in heaven. No doubt she’s walking with Jesus on a beach somewhere in heaven collecting the most beautiful shells. Her spirit is very much alive today. I feel her near. I feel her working the details of Waves of Grace alongside Jesus. Here is one of her last Facebook statuses:
"Left beautiful Orange Beach today... sunny skies, clear as far as the eyes can see and much warmer than here. Enjoyed our short stay so much. Found a few shells... no big ones... just little, but that's okay, they speak to me. Some perfect and some broken. Reminds me of life and each of us! God accepts us as we are with all our imperfections and broken pieces."
- Debbie Massengill (September 26, 1951 - July 15, 2012)
I love seeing God at work and connecting people throughout life. I have met some beautiful people and Ana is heaven sent. She heard about Waves through one of my best friends mom, who is a neighbor of mine and dear friend as well. She’s offered her beach home to Waves of Grace. It’s so beautiful and again I am speechless so I asked her to share her story…
“My breast cancer diagnosis February 2012 was shocking, I never get sick and there is no history of breast cancer in my family. My treatment included chemo, surgery and radiation. It was stressful, sad, sometimes lonely and there were many scary moments. In times of fear I prayed, I thought of my favorite songs such as “My God Is An Awesome God”, and I often pictured myself at the beach in St. George Island, it help me calm down.
We celebrated the last radiation session with a trip to St. George Island, straight from the Cancer Center. It was amazing to breathe the ocean air, to listen to the sound of the waves, to feel the warm September breeze, the sun, the soft sand between my toes, to spend a few relaxing days with my family enjoying God’s blessings. Every sunrise felt extra special on this trip, it was part of His plan.
A few months later, He had us on a new fast moving journey. We found a lot on St. George Island, purchased it July 2013 and completed construction of “Mamma’s Dream” in record “island time” by June 30th 2014. He did it, He guided us along every step of this journey. He put is in the right places at the right time, took us to the right people and the right state of mind to fulfill a long time dream of owning a beach house. Through it all I mentioned often that I felt there was some special reason “Mamma’s Dream” was becoming a reality.
Then He did it again! Through family members I was introduced to Waves of Grace and instantly felt the connection. It is an honor to support Waves, it is truly a gift to our family to share “Mamma’s Dream”.
No matter where Waves takes you, I hope time at the beach will provide you peace, relaxation and create happy memories with your loved ones. May every sunrise and sunset be extra special. God is good, all the time!” – Ana
Amen Ana! So thankful for you.