Sunday, 21 April 2013
It'll Be Alright On The Night
"And you must always remember there's one good thing about being trapped down here: It'll save funeral expenses." Puddleglum The Marshwiggle
For those of you who have read The Chronicles of Narnia, you would have already become acquainted with this delightful and hope inspiring character Puddleglum from The Silver Chair. He is known for his spectacular ability to fixate on the worse case scenario while putting a crass positive spin on it which has the effect of making the situation seem even more hopeless.
I've been thinking about the concept of worst case scenarios recently and I have come to the conclusion that such a thing does not exist. Why? It is because no matter how big the disaster you encounter or can conjure up in your mind, it could always be worse. I have to admit, that the worst case scenario often springs to mind when I am faced with a hard situation. Granted, not every disaster I have thought about has come true, but quite a few significant ones have.
When I am faced with a new symptom of unknown diagnosis, I automatically run through a list of possible diagnosis it could be. It is just how I'm wired. I don't think it is wrong nor do I think it is harmful. I would like to suggest that the harm is in fixating on the outcome be it good or bad. You can't control the thoughts that come to mind but you can control what you do with them. There is a difference between accepting that something is wrong and then grieving, and being overcome by it. When I was told that I had an infection and I was told what bacteria was grown, Infective Endocarditis automatically made it onto my list of differential diagnosis even before the doctor discussed it with me. It was a pretty big blow even before the official diagnosis. I did hope and pray that it was not, but my prayers would always end with an acknowledgment that God is in control and He will make everything alright. But that did not mean I was expecting Him to take away the current suffering, it meant that the outcome of my current situation isn't the issue. He makes everything alright by giving me the faith, strength, peace and grace to cope with whatever comes my way. The problem with setting your hopes on a positive outcome is that it is not grounded, it is false hope. The problem with convincing yourself that the outcome is negative is that you will be miserable and will become bitter. Trying to convince myself that the outcome will be positive is just as futile as convincing myself that the outcome will be negative because the future is unknown to me.
The cancers that my body has had to endure along with its complications is likely to have long lasting effects. There is no organ of my body that will not be effected either in the short term or long term. I have played through the scenario in my head of what it would be like if a major complication were to occur, say for example, not being able to have children, and it hurts. The truth is that this could happen. I don't know what the outcome will be. But there is one thing I do know. God always has my best interests at heart because He is a loving father. When I chose to follow Him, I gave Him my life. Often, I have cried to Him and asked Him how much more will He take from me? But when I think about the sacrifice He made and the price He paid so that I could have a relationship with Him, that storm in my heart is calmed as I realise that giving my whole life over to God and allowing Him to do what He will with it will never come close to the sacrifice He made for me. That is how He makes everything alright. This is where the peace lies. When we entrust our hopes and dreams to the One who loves us more than words can describe, we find peace because the trust in God as a loving Father who always works for the good of His children trumps everything else.
The phrase It'll Be Alright On The Night is interesting because it assumes that hardship and disasters will occur right up to the dress rehearsal. But ultimately, when the curtains rise and the show is performed for real, things will go well. Life is the disastrous rehearsals, but when it comes to show time, when we meet our Maker, it will be alright on the night.