I know you must think you are important. You seem to have so much power. While yes there are times that you lose a battle, it seems so often that you are still winning the war. You claim the lives of both princes and paupers, young and old, white, black, olive, human, and animal. You leave behind a wake of hurt and pain for the loved ones, and I think I speak for all when I say, “I really hate you.” My family has not escaped your grasp either, and I do not assume you are finished with my loved ones, or even me for that matter. You are good at what you do, but I wanted to write and let you know a few things, at least from a Christian’s perspective.
Cancer, your pain is only temporary:
There is, no doubt, a lot of pain involved in trying to beat you. There is often associated with this battle treatments like chemo, radiation, surgery, and other uncomfortable and hurtful procedures that we do to combat you, but this pain is only short lived. Sometimes we beat you, and you never return. Yes, scars may stay, but you are not the giver and taker of life, Cancer . . . there is Someone higher than you. Even if this life on earth ends for the Christian, eternity in Heaven where there is no more cancer is just beginning. You see, the pain you give is only temporary, and there is really nothing you can do to change that. Temporary pain is real pain no doubt, but it is not eternal.
Cancer, you have no real power:
Oh yes, you may believe yourself to be a powerful foe, but just like Pontius Pilate, 2000 years ago, you have no power unless it be given to you (John 19:11). You didn’t start the process of pain, hurt, or power over people. You are simply a bi-product of sin, Cancer. You have no power except that which is allowed for you to have through our good and gracious sovereign Lord. Does the Lord take delight in the death of someone though your diseased tentacles? No, but He is sovereign over it. For in His book it is written, “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints” (Psalm 116:15). While it may seem as if you are omnipotent in your spreading of such a dreadful illness, you have no real power except what the Lord allows for His own glory through it.
Cancer, your ultimate defeat is imminent:
Lastly, I would like you to know that your day is coming. You have done some great damage in your time here. You have no doubt won some battles, but the end of you and the end of this sinful and disease filled life is coming to an end very soon. Your ultimate defeat has already been accomplished. When Jesus came and lived a perfect life, and went to the cross to satisfy the rightful wrath from the Father . . . this is when you died. He defeated death on the cross. He defeated sin there, and He defeated you there as well. See, there is coming a day where all will be made right. All will be made new. Yes, you can take a life, but through Christ there can be new life. There can be eternal life. You sir, are only temporary. You will be no more. You will cause no more tears, no more pain, no more feelings of “they are gone to soon.” You will be swallowed up in victory because of what Christ has done. You are done, Cancer. You are done.
Yes, you may very well take from us those we love. You may very well continue for a short time to ravage our bodies and those whom we care so dearly for, but you will not have the last word. The last Word comes from The Word made flesh, and He said “whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16b). Cancer, you cannot take that away. So, while you may devastate us and try to stomp us out, I want you to remember that I very much do hate you, and while you may rob me or my loved one of life here on earth, you will never be able to rob us of our eternal life. Your time is coming, Cancer. There is nothing you can do to stop it. Oh, and in case you have not heard our mantra, just let these words echo in your ears, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:21). Death may come to us, but our life will be eternal.
Soli Deo Gloria,
Adam B. Burrell