Archive for January 2013

Body Today

January 24, 2013

Living with the side effects of chemotherapy varies from day to day.   Since I completed my chemotherapy in September my body has recovered from some of the side effects.  I can now drink cold beverages again; very thankfully, my sense of taste has come back(!); and one aspect of my sense of balance seems to have returned.  But certain neuropathy side effects continue and are bothersome.

On the other hand, I am very thankful that the tests I have had in the last couple of months indicate that there are no present evidences of cancer.  Since cancer is seen as the natural enemy, this alone gives reason for rejoicing.

But, discontent with apparent healing of the cancer, I have gone through periods of longingly setting my focus on some future day when, I presume, all the side effects of chemo will be behind me too, and my body will be back to “normal.”  That is, I will be able to touch, feel, write, type, walk, and run without impediments.

I have now found myself convicted that such longing undermines an appreciation for the healing which the Lord has provided, and evidences a discontent with “this day, which the Lord has made.”  Furthermore, it shows a presumption of the nature of that “future day” when — I presumptuously hope — all side effects will be behind me.  But James writes . . .

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”– yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil.

James 4:13-16

So what if God doesn’t want to remove all of my side effects?  What if He wants me to stay “the same” as I am right now for the rest of my life?  Will I perpetually be “discontent?”  Will I be constantly “living” in a tomorrow that may never come — and failing to live in the “today” that God has graciously given me?  Am I expecting heaven on earth?  Am I living as if this world is all there is, with my hope fixed on a resolution in this life which may never come?   If so, I will not be living a life submitted to the Lord’s will.  To paraphrase Psalm 118:24, the Lord has been leading me to meditate:

“This is the body that the Lord has given me TODAY,

I will rejoice and be glad in it.”

God may choose to allow my present condition to continue the rest of my life — for His glory, and His purposes.   Or God may allow my cancer to come back.  Or He may choose to heal those bothersome side effects.  Regardless of His choice, I must trust that His way is perfect, and glorify Him through the body He has given me today.

“As for God, His way is perfect.”

Psalm 18:30a

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