Tuesday, January 1


I think perhaps I am afraid to go to sleep because when I wake up it all might be different. But as the hours crawl onward, further into the new year, nothing has changed. The city, the people all sleep, to wake tomorrow and go on about their lives. Another year, another six months, another week... does anything really change that much?

It came as as screeching halt to my life in May of 2007, what will be six years ago, when they said I had cancer. It all changed. The way I tell time, the way I feel time going by. Sometimes in drops, and other times in torrents that, no matter how much I grasp at it it can't, or won't, come back.

Almost six years past my sentence of death... more time than some have been given, and at the same time less than others... but who can really claim to know when that last breath will come? Even at 90 there will be someone who has lived longer, taken more breathes, lived through more, than me.

Time continues on... days roll up in weeks and weeks become months and months, years... I feel them differently than before that day in May. Yet, they act the same as they did every day up until that point. I am aware of my minutes and I feel like I can't plan for any kind of future. Being able to tell what is happening a week from now now seems like a huge blessing. I can't even imagine writing an event on my calendar for next year with any kind of confidence. Yet, most of you do.

Would I change if tomorrow I was healed? Would I revert to the way I was before? Is that what really keeps me from being healed? That God knows I would go back to pre-2007 me if given the chance? Or would I? Would I live differently with the burden lifted? Or would I be replacing one burden for another?

What is the cost of healing? Knowing that I am prepared to die and then, being somewhat confident of the when, the how, it is replaced with a giant question mark that hangs over everyone else. (That is generally just ignored) What else? Could I ever stop talking about how God had saved me? Did the three friends of Daniel (Daniel 3) ever stop telling people about what God did for them at the fiery furnace? How could I be silent? Would the desire to tell the world burn me out? How could I tell everyone? How is being saved eternally through Jesus Christ any different? Why don't I tell more people about that? That's more important than being free of cancer... yet here I am not saying much.

Sometimes it seems like God uses dead people more than he uses the living. In the face of death we leave statements, comments, memories, and then, we die. And in that death shock-waves of effect on the friends and family we touched momentarily before our deaths... Is my story worth more with the final punctuation point on the end? Or does it matter? We don't really know if the apostle Paul was killed or not. Some traditions have him going to Spain and retiring there. His story begins and ends with a few letters in the new testament.

At this point I don't know which way I'd go. I think there would be some remarkable story for everyone to tell about the sickness being removed from me and the effects that story could have. But then how I face death, how I face the end, might be just as powerful a story. Or maybe the end doesn't matter. Maybe it's the fight that is the point of this story. Maybe whether I live or die isn't the point. We all want a happy ending to our stories, and barring that some kind of closure, but what if the point of MY story wasn't about how it ended, but how the whole thing was fought. 

I don't know what God will choose to do with my story, my life, but I pray it has been, and will continue to be effective. I also hope the "ending" (be it life or sickness) is also as meaningful. I'm not really sure which one will end THIS chapter but I am looking forward to it as much as the rest of you.

Thank you Lord for bringing me this far, give me wisdom on how best to tell the story you have given me, and how to share the saving you have already blessed me with.

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