I’m sitting here on this Easter night contemplating this question… “What does it really mean to love someone through it?” and “How far are you willing go to love them through it and what exactly is involved in that?”.
That’s the whole idea behind Team Martina… we’re a community service group and we’re a family of friends founded on the basis of “loving people through” cancer, crisis or other challenges. That’s what we’re all about. That’s what Martina McBride’s song, “I’m Gonna Love You Through It”, talks about. That’s what The Isaacs wrote the song about.
But how many of us have really stopped to consider how far we may have to go with that? I bet not many of us.
Just what kind of commitment are we talking here?
Overcoming cancer can take a long time and some times the end result is not what we had prayed for after all. And, in the interim, things can get pretty hard. Even those of us who may be just visiting in the life of a cancer patient, and not directly involved in the day to day struggle of fighting cancer, may not appreciate the level of commitment, understanding, and love required even of us bystanders.
Let us, for a few minutes, remember that we’re all dying. We all have a terminal condition. We have all been dying since the moment we were born. The Bible says in James 4:14 that we are like vapor… a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. We cannot even say what our tomorrow holds. Everything in this life is temporary.
I thoroughly believe that the basic purpose of our lives here on Earth is about serving each other and making this world as best as we can - to move onto an incredible eternity with God, our permanent home. I don’t feel like we can attach too much importance to anything on this Earth. This is just a gateway… our end goal and home is beyond. We’re on a journey… together.
So if indeed we all have a terminal illness then we’re all loving each other through it everyday aren’t we? So how do we do that? How do we treat each other every day with more and more understanding as we move through this life?
How do we become more and more understanding with someone suffering through something like cancer as the months, weeks, and years go by, when the struggle grows long, when the rubber meets the road, their body grows weaker, when the money runs out, when we get tired… after the music stops and the song is no longer playing and we don’t feel inspired… how long are you willing to hang in there for someone battling cancer?
Our friend and cancer patient Taira says that when you do something to help someone, you will get double for your trouble… this saying is inspired by a passage in the Bible meaning God promises to restore to you what you have lost and give you even more. But what if you don’t get something back right away for your trouble? Are you anxiously waiting for that “something”… your reward? Or are you comfortable just helping someone and expecting nothing in return?
I think we’re all hoping deep down that we get something.. don’t you? Very few of us can totally let go all the time of the desire for some kind of recognition or reward. It feels really good to make that connection… to participate in a good deed and see that… YES!… it really resonated with people and made a difference and they liked it.
We give gifts to friends to not only just give them something… but we also get the reward of connecting with them, making them smile… it makes us feel good. We get something back in that way. It’s human nature to want that. That’s a big part of what draws people to do volunteer work and do good deeds… we all speak of how ‘rewarding’ it feels.
I think that often that reward is out there, it just may not be in the form we expect or come in the time we expect. And as we mature, we do learn to savor and enjoy the satisfaction of simply helping someone and letting it go… letting that good deed go out into the universe with no strings attached.
It is very freeing to be “no strings attached” in our life and in our giving. Free yourself from that burden and enjoy the rewards.
“The true meaning of life is to plant trees, under whose shade you do not expect to sit.” - Nelson Henderson
“I have found that among its other benefits, giving liberates the soul of the giver.”