Wednesday, January 18, 2017

5 Things I Learned from Cancer

5Things I Learned from Cancer

1.  Cherish the moment
Life is made up of many sparkling moments, so don't waste time worrying about tomorrow or what happened yesterday. Fix it. Plan for it. Then, trust God. His powerful presence is found in the moment. 

2. Begin with the end in mind
In Stephen R. Covey's book, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, the second habit is to begin with the end in mind. It's good advice for all of us.

This life isn't forever, so maybe now is the time to brush up on your faith. Don't wait until it's too late or you're too sick to develop a faith life.  Prepare for that. Get to know God now. Join a church...participate in a bible study...a small prayer group. Do it now! Then, when the winds blow and the tide rises, it won't be as scary.
Today's actions will lift you later, believe me. Growing your faith is like putting money in the bank. Begin with the end in mind.

3.  There is a separation between body and nurture your spirit
Nurture your spirit. Bone pain, muscle aches, brain pain and fatigue can debilitate me and leave me struggling physically, but it doesn't limit my ability to soar spiritually. Surround yourself with faith-filled friends. When I felt too poorly to get out of bed, I'd listen to holy music, the daily readings and encouraging sermons, and my spirit would soar. Despite the illness, I feel wrapped in the love of God. Sometimes I wonder if the sufferings of this life are like labor pains pushing us toward the new life that awaits us.

4. Everybody has troubles, so get over it (trust God with it)
While I was battling cancer, sometimes friends would visit and share their troubles. Surprisingly, I'd sometimes find myself thinking I'd rather be dealing with this cancer than facing their struggle.

It makes me remember this passage: Come to me all you who are weary and are carrying heavy burdens, and I will give you rest...for my yoke is easy and my burden is light. - Matthew 11:28, 30. Did you know that yokes were specifically fitted to each individual animal?  I've always heard God will never give you more than you can handle. Maybe it's true.
5. There's a silver lining in every cloud...even yours! Find it.
There's a silver lining in every cloud, my mother used to say. She's right. I can be too ill to drive, get out of the house, work, volunteer or visit friends, but I can sit in my backyard and cherish the gentle breeze blowing my hair. I can be awestruck by the beautiful sunsets. I can give unlimited time to a conversation with my kids. I can read my Bible, I can pray, I can write...Silver linings...and I thank God for them daily.

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