I would never ‘in’ this world be glad that I had cancer. Yet, from a life-learning, God-honouring, spirit-living, ‘out’ of this world, perspective, I am thankful that I did.
I know that sounds weird and even a little foolish - how can anyone utter those two words in the same sentence; glad and cancer? But I am glad.
I am not glad that those wretched, devouring cells wreaked havoc in my body. I am not glad that I had to have 6 months of intensive bittersweet poison course through my veins traversing - not differentiating between the healthy and the hideous untoward. I am not glad that my family and friends were sent into turmoil as they tried to figure out how to help.
But I am glad for a million other reasons.
- God got my attention
- I learned to lean on Him alone
- I realized that I am NOT in control of anything
- I learned to love deeper
- I learned to speak sweeter
- I learned to listen better
- I learned to forgive quickly
- I learned to judge slowly
- I found out that some things don’t really matter and it’s not important for me to win all the battles
- I learned the value and importance of family
- I discovered what unconditional love means.
- I learned that when I don’t allow people to help me, I am actually stifling the God-given gifts of others
- I found out that death is nothing to fear
- I learned the importance of giving hope to others
- I found out that God doesn’t need me to defend Him. He just needs me to serve Him.
- I found out that ‘paying it forward’ is the best way to pay someone back
- I learned that gratitude is more than an emotion – it is an action
- I came to the conclusion that gratitude is also an attitude that can change perspective and promote well-being
- I learned to give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for me...
No, cancer is not something I would wish for anyone to go through. But even seven years later as I give thanks to God that he chose for me to survive the battle, I am still learning. God is not finished with me yet, and I know every morning when the sun comes up I am filled with the love of Jesus and the hope in His promises and the peace that passeth all that understanding [that I thought I had.] As I think upon these things I know I have two choices when I roll out of bed – wallow in self-pity, bemoaning all that I have been through and all the troubles that lie in wait OR I can put a smile on my face and say – “Okay, God – what are we up to today?”
And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Colossians 3:15-19