When we picture a person dying in our minds, most of us see an elderly person, lying in a hospital bed surrounded by their loved ones. We see someone who simply closes their eyes and falls asleep praying to the Lord. While that is such a beautiful way to pass into the eternal life, it is simply not always the case here on Earth. Babies die unexpectedly, children die, people die in car accidents, on planes, in their homes, and on vacations. Which makes death such a scary word, often correlated with platters of food, bouquets of flowers, kleenex in your pocket, and wearing the color black.
While I had always thought I was untouchable from death at this age, I came to a point after my diagnosis where I began to accept it. It was a very difficult realization that we will all die eventually. I thought to myself about the most invincible and powerful people I know and about how powerless they were when it came to death.
The tragedy in accepting the ending of a life is that we think we have so much time. For some silly reason we, as humans, think we have all the time in the world. We want time to achieve an impressive college degree, time to land an awesome job, time to create a beautiful family, time build a home with a white-picket fence wrapped around it, and time to spend growing old with someone we love so dearly. We believe that "one of these days" we will have time to grow in our faith, time to read the bible, time to pay attention to those in our lives who mean the most to us, time to take a vacation with our family, time to visit a nursing home, time to volunteer, or time to do a favor for someone who could never repay us.
But what we don't realize until we are forced to, is that we do not get to choose our life span. We do not get to choose how much time we have left in our hour glass. None of us are perfect, and we are all guilty of putting off what is truly important in order to build the life we've dreamt about. We get so caught up in working 8-5 jobs and checking off the to-do list, that we forget to embrace the gifts we've been given. The blessing in a life-threatening diagnosis is learning this the hard way.
So what means the most to you when your knees hit the floor? I can guarantee that when someone in a fancy white coat with a stethoscope around their neck tells you your days are limited, you will not want more time behind a desk. You will not wish you had a better college degree, a better job, or a house with a white picket fence. You will want more time with your family, your partner, and your friends. You will want more time with God. You will want more time with people, especially those nearest to your heart.
So after pondering death, getting use to the idea, and still being scared out of my mind. I came to accept it through the power of turning my fear into deepened faith. It showed me that
The goal is not to live forever, the goal is to create something that will
My testimony is my "something". It is my story and something I will die happily with when my day does come. My work here on earth is not finished yet, and I believe that is why God lead me down this path of healing, giving me more time in my hourglass. He needs more and more people to find Him, find His gifts He's given us to heal, and find that there is more than one option in the face of a diagnosis. I recently read a quote, "you'll be surprised to know how far you can go from the point that you thought was the end" and it instantly drew tears. I thought my life was over, that my time had run out. But God was only tapping me on the shoulder, teaching me lessons no amount of money could ever buy, and calling me to do His will.
So hold your loved ones tight, and find yoursomething.
Choose to be crazy. Choose to see things differently.
"Do not be afraid, keep on speaking, do not be silent." Acts 18:9