Jo Dee Messina Filled With 'Gratitude and Joy' Following Cancer Surgery

Jo Dee Messina is continuing her fight against cancer, but she isn't going to complain about it. Although the singer just had surgery, she is focusing on her faith and all of the positive things in her life, which she says are numerous.

"I'm leaning on God," Messina told PEOPLE. "I'm letting Him take charge. It's what's best for my soul right now. Every biopsy and every result … it feels like an eternity goes by. I know that God has me. I'm filled with gratitude and joy."

Messina is a proud mom to 9-year-old son, Noah, and Jonah, 6, whom she refuses to shield from her current struggle.

"Sometimes I need help getting dishes down from the shelf," she conceded. "I let my kids see my weakness as much as I let them see my joy of life."

"I have wanted to be honest with the kids," she continued. "I want to be a safe place for them. But I have let them see the realness of the pain and the struggle of my surgery."

Messina might be facing ups and downs with her cancer, but although she doesn't give specifics on her health, she does insist she's feeling – and sounding – better every day.

"I'm getting some of my energy back," Messina maintained. "I think I sound good. My hope is that I do. I have hope in my heart, so I am grateful ... I know that I took the road I was supposed to take. If I look back, I know that God has always been there. I want to make sure that people know that God is good."

Messina is focusing on her faith with her current single, "Reckless Love," which says, in part, "Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God / Oh, it chases me down, fights 'til I'm found, leaves the ninety-nine."

"I heard this song in 2017 as part of a package from Bethel Music and watched a version of it on YouTube," she recounted. "This song took the wind out of me. It was then released to radio [by singer-songwriter Cory Asbury] and I was like, 'It's that song again.' It resonates with my soul and my spirit, especially considering as many mistakes I have made."

Messina, who spent time in rehab in 2004 for alcohol addiction, is aware that country radio might not play a song with such a strong spiritual message, but Messina isn't about to be deterred.

"A lot of people around me have been frightened to release it to the country format," said the 48-year-old. "I don't have that fear. There is someone out there that needs to hear it. I don't care what is current or what is going to be successful, but country music is my home format. Why not share the message? God is not formatted."

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Photo Credit: Getty images/Alli Harvey