Is Living with Cancer a Battle?
Last week I sent off a couple of submissions of my draft manuscript that recounts my journey with faith and cancer (Stage 4 non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma) from diagnosis through treatment to remission and beyond.
I am part of a supportive Christian Writer's Group who has quite an active online community. So I just briefly posted in the Facebook Group that I had sent in submissions to publishers and asked for prayer. Someone then asked what the book was about - so as a very brief way of summarising something quite complex in just a few words I said:
This led to someone private messaging me with a question, asking me why I had used the word 'battle' to describe my experience of living with cancer.
I then got a private message from someone else who has sadly been diagnosed with cancer for a second time. She quite rightly questioned my use of the word 'battle'.
This was a very good question!
I replied and explained that in this instance, a quick post of Facebook, I tried to use a word most enquirers could relate to hence use of the word 'battle'.
However my experience was one more of surrender and submission to God as well as the medical professionals. I had to learn that I was not in control, but I knew the One who was. Indeed God is fighting for me, all I was called to do was rest and to trust.
The word 'battle' is so often used in the same breath as the word 'cancer' to describe one's experience of it - especially when you haven't been through it yourself.
The battle belongs to the Lord.
Just like the Michael W Smith song 'Surrounded' that says:
"This is how I fight my battles
It may look like I'm surrounded but I'm surrounded by You
This is how I fight my battles"
I completely get it. We fight by not fighting at all! We may be surrounded, but if we surround ourselves with God, even in the presence of our enemies, He will enable us to rest. In the midst of the storm we can curl up with Jesus in the boat and sleep! His peace will be within us and around us. As we rest and trust in Him, He will fight for us.
So to answer my opening question - Is living with cancer a battle? I would say, yes it is, but perhaps not quite in the way you think.
I can only hope and pray that you will allow Jesus to fight your battles for you too.