I sat on the front row of the Denbigh Baptist Christian School talent show and dinner. I was having serious regrets about the hotdog that I had just consumed (this was the Monday after chemo and I was still nauseous) but was still enjoying the music of the evening. Three girls stood on stage and sang one of those country songs that describes a fairytale existence for a girl. My guess, it was by our favorite country girl star, Taylor Swift, who continually sings about every girl's dream life. I remembered back to a few summers ago when I was driving with a couple of girls from the youth group I was leading at the time. We had the windows rolled down and we were belting out one of these songs. You have to admit, Swift does create some great car singing music, at least for us girls.
Life had seemed like such a fairytale then.
Things in my life seem to have fallen into place perfectly. I had a wonderful family. I was going to a great school and studying what I had wanted to study all my life. I had met the perfect guy, he had romanced my socks off, and we were going to get married. I would graduate and we would live happily ever after with several kids and a dog. Everything seemed to be working out according to my plans.
Then, I was diagnosed. Everything seemed to be falling apart. Would I graduate? Would I get a job? How were we going to live? Was I going to beat this cancer? Suddenly, I looked around and thought, "I am not living in a fairytale anymore." There was no way cancer had been part of the plan.
At the start of these girls' rendition of their fairytale song, I was mourning the loss of my fairytale. I was hoping that their dreams did not get battered like mine. However, as I sat there, I thought about God's plan for my life. As a Christian, I believe that He is daily, and in every circumstance, moving to draw me closer and closer to Himself. Romans 8:18-30 speaks of suffering yet also about how God is working all things together for the good of those who love Him. He is conforming us to the image of His Son. My "good" is not ultimately that I will be cured or that I will one day have the career and family that I always dreamed of. My "good" is knowing Christ more.
Cancer is part of my fairytale.
Although cancer seems to have taken so much from me (student teaching, last semester at college, my physical fitness, and my love for cheeseburgers), it has not taken away my love for my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In fact, it is making me love Him more. Daily I have to battle to be content with where He has me and to trust in Him when I do not know what even the next day brings. Daily I must remember the Gospel, that Jesus Christ died to pay for my sins so that I might know Him now and one day be with Him forever. Even though it is such a day by day struggle, I am falling deeper and deeper in love with Jesus Christ. Cancer has not taken away my fairytale dreams. God is using this to draw me closer and closer in the ultimate fairytale of being wooed by Christ.