Friday, August 17, 2012
This is for Eric (200th Post)
One thing I’ve always hoped my blog would be is a source of help, hope, and learning for others. I’ve always thought that if people could see the journey I’ve been on and how I’ve responded (both positively and negatively) to the issues I’ve faced in life, then they might find some sense of comfort, understanding, compassion, or hope in their own journeys, and in dealing with others facing similar situations.
With that in mind, I thought it fitting to share Eric’s video (above) with all of you. Here is a man, just 28 years old, dying from leukemia. For the last few years he has been chronicling his battle with that disease online. He has brought much awareness to what all a person with leukemia goes through, and has even raised money to help others who are going through it as well.
I can’t imagine the sort of emotions he is facing right now. Stress, worry, fear, panic, anger, frustration… what else? Hopelessness? Maybe a growing sense of peace?
When I think of dying, fear is usually one of the first things I think about. I fear death. I fear it because I don’t know what will happen. As a Christian, I believe I’ll go to Heaven and be with God and family and friends. But even in believing these things, death is something that frightens me. There are things I want to be able to experience in this world before I die. There are people I don’t want to feel sad or to be burdened by me no longer living. I wonder if it will hurt, or if I’ll know what is happening when it happens. Or if I’ll even be able to be brave about it. And then I have to admit that I also worry about being wrong. What if there really is no God and no Heaven, and once this life is gone, that’s it? That in the end, all that we are is lost in a single moment.
I like being planned and knowing, or at least being able to anticipate, what is going to happen. Death doesn’t exactly cooperate with me in that. I don’t know when I will die. And I don’t know how it will happen. I don’t even know what exactly will happen when it happens. It is all just an unknown. And even though it is certainly a part of life—to someday die—it is still something which I think most of us would agree we do not look forward to. Most of us would rather live. But when you know you are about to die, that must be incredibly difficult; especially when you are young, knowing there is so much more to life that you could experience, but won’t.
My heart aches for Eric. I know sometimes I get really down because of some of the things I’ve gone through/go through, but none of that is comparable to what Eric has faced. He has battled his illness for years, and now it is finally claiming his life. I wish he could get better. I’m going to be praying for him to get better, somehow. But if he doesn’t, I know the matter is in God’s hands. I believe firmly that everything happens for a reason. We may not always know what that reason is, but I believe God is at work in all things that we do and in all that happens to us. He can use anything bad of this world and transform it into something so good that it is beyond anything we could ever imagine. I just hope He will grant Eric some level of peace, hope, and understanding, and that he will know how his living has made a positive impact on others.
Please all of you pray for Eric and his family. I’d say they could really use our prayers right now.