Senator Ted Kennedy died today.
He wasn’t a personal friend of mine. I never met him.
Although I’ve respected his family’s sense of civic responsibility through the years, I wouldn’t say that I was overly concerned with the Kennedy family’s activities. . We come from different socioeconomic backgrounds and I never summered on the Cape, but I can certainly appreciate his devotion to the great commonwealth of Massachusetts. I didn’t always agree with Senator Kennedy on political matters, but I share the love he had for this country.
Even though I really didn’t know him and never followed his career that closely, I wept at his passing today, because he was a member of the family that all cancer patients and the people who love them belong. A club of sorts. Today we lost another soldier in the fight.
His death hits my family particularly hard because Senator Kennedy had the exact same kind of cancer that my dad has. Today we were reminded yet again of the deadly nature of my dad’s disease. We seem to walk a very thin line between knowing that we serve a sovereign God Who is not afraid of cancer and the knowledge that we are weak, fearful, vessels of dirt who know that not everyone who fights this fight wins…at least not on this earth.
Every morning when I wake up and countless times througout the day, I have to make a conscious decision not to let cancer be the theme of my existence. It is difficult to not let this diagnosis consume me or my family. I daily remind myself that despite my dad’s illness, life goes on. I choose to be an active participant in my own life and in the lives of my family and friends. We are not this cancer. But on days like today, even the headlines hit too close to home and we have to give pause and voice to the deepest concerns and hurts of our hearts.
I pray this prayer often:
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time, one moment at a time…
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace…
Taking, as He (Jesus) did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it…
Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His will…
That I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with Him forever in the next.
Today I pray for Senator Kennedy’s family…and for all the other families who are fighting their own fights against cancer all over the world on this very day.
Some will hear the word “cancer” in the context of their own lives for the first time today. Some are waiting for test results to see if their cancer is back. Some are watching poison slowly drip into their veins, praying that it will save their lives or at least prolong their time on this earth. Some are lying all alone in a dark room on a cold table as machines radiate their bodies. Some will stop fighting today and will enter their eternal destinations. All of us are hoping for a miracle.
Tomorrow my dad has another MRI and we’ll hear the results on Friday. As always, my family covets and greatly appreciates your prayers for us.
Thanks for the kind comments you left on my last post. Although you certainly wouldn’t be able to tell it just by reading that post and this one today, I’m really not a call away from the Suicide Prevention Hotline, I promise. I’m probably more pensive than usual, but I’m truly okay. I’ve been extremely busy since I was last here and I think immersing myself in the details of day-to-day life has been healthy for me. It helps me to remember that life is so much more than temporary troubles and God means for us to live out all of our days for His glory. I had hoped to come back today with a more lighthearted, upbeat post, but when I heard the news today, I knew I needed to put words to my thoughts and this is the place I often do that.
Before I go, I know that most if not all of you personally know at least one person with cancer or are friends with someone who is dealing with cancer in his or her family. Many of you probably have a family member who has cancer. Will you do me a favor? Will you pray specifically for your friend or family member today? I know there are many of other hurts in this world that have nothing to do with cancer, but just today, I’d like you to ask God to bring to your mind as many people who have this disease so that you can take those people to the throne room of the Almighty with your prayers.
Thanks. I appreciate it.