Monday, September 26, 2011

Poached Egg or the Son of God

I love what C.S. Lewis has to say about Jesus and want to share his thoughts with you. I think he gets it exactly right:

"I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: 'I'm ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don't accept His claim to be God.' That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic--on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg--or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronising nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to."

-From C.S. Lewis' book Mere Christianity

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Trusting and Healing

Last week while on vacation I met a survivor of stage IV bone cancer. Against all odds, she is surviving and is in remission. She told me God healed her. After hearing some of her story, I have no other reasonable explanation for why she is still living other than God truly did heal her.

After she shared her story with me, I told her a little about myself and how I'm living with thyroid cancer. She looked at me for a second and then said, "If you trust in God, He WILL heal you and keep you on this earth." I didn't know how to respond. Anyone who knows me knows I believe in the power of prayer and in the healing power of God. But this lady looked at me and suggested to me that I am not cancer-free because I am not trusting in God. Maybe that's not what she really meant to say, but it's what she did say. The only thing I could get out of my mouth was, "I do trust in God." I was so rattled and angry that I couldn't say what I was really thinking.

I'm thankful that God has healed her, but cancer did not take up residence in my body because I don't trust in God. It's not hanging out in my neck because I haven't been trusting in God. On the contrary, the ONLY way I am able to move forward with life is BECAUSE OF my faith in God. He has sustained me and will sustain me. This I know to be true.

I also know that, as much as I wish I could say I do, I don't trust in God 100% of the time. I wish I did, but does anybody?! Does anyone live without doubt and worry and fear all of the time? I know I don't. I know it's easy to forget to trust in God when lumps pop up in my neck or when a scan is coming up. But I don't think that's the reason I have cancer.

I might be cancer-free in this lifetime. That is my hope and prayer, and I know God hears that prayer. But just because I haven't been healed on my timeline doesn't mean God isn't just or merciful or full of grace. He is all of those things all the time.

I don't really know what my point is here, but this lady shook me up so much that I just needed to write about it. I think I'm writing now because I needed to respond, and since I'll never see this lady again, I responded to you.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

This too shall pass

How often do we hear the words "this too shall pass" when going through a hard time? I know I've heard it more times than I can count. People say it with the intention of being encouraging. I really do appreciate the Barnabas' in my life who are great at encouraging me, but too often, the conversation goes something like this:

Me: "Yeah, so. I have cancer."
Barnabas: "OMG, you're too young to have cancer. Well, just remember that this, too, shall pass."

I really do appreciate the gesture. But what Barney forgot to mention is WHEN this will pass. I mean, really, does anyone really know that this will pass? Is it realistic to even suggest that it will? I don't think so. How can anyone know for sure that cancer will not be a part of my life for the rest of my life? Unless you're God, you can't know. You don't know if I will ever be cancer-free on this earth. I don't know. My doctor doesn't know. The fact is, this might not pass in this lifetime.

See, I was thinking about this earlier today. I decided that what's important is that cancer really is temporary when I look at it with an eternity mindset. I know that cancer is an earthly thing; it's temporary. When I die and step over into eternity, I get to leave cancer behind. That's a promise from God. So when we're talking about cancer in the eternal sense, it too shall pass.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Relay For Life

Relay For Life is an awesome event held by the American Cancer Society every year all over the world. For me, this event is largely about celebrating life. It's about celebrating being a survivor of cancer. My favorite part is the survivors' walk. Joining together with friends and family and other survivors and caregivers from my community is such an amazing experience. It's a great reminder that we are not alone.

This was at the campsite next to my team. This makes it seem like the team had a vampire theme, but just to the left of this weird fang-y mouth was a cut out of Willy Wonka and some Oompa Loompas. I think the message here is that vampires and Willy Wonka both hate cancer.

I don't even know.


The luminary ceremony/walk is a time to remember our loved ones who died as a result of cancer. I raised my candle and walked for a dear friend who made (and continues to make!) a huge impression on my life.

If there's a Relay for Life in your area (and there probably is if you live in the U.S.) then I highly encourage you to check it out. It's an awesome experience.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Survivor Observation Area

Last Friday, I participated in Relay For Life. More on that later, but for now, enjoy this picture. Close to the main stage at Relay there was a "Survivor Observation Area." I'm still not sure what that was for. Maybe the survivors were supposed to perform while all the other attendees watched from the designated observation area. I dunno. My family and I found it very amusing, so of course we mocked it the entire time we were there. During one of our walks around the lap, they decided to stop and observe me. Next year, they're bringing binoculars to enhance their survivor observation experience.