Please welcome my friend and fellow Christian author, Lynn Eib, as she shares the story of when her world crumbled before her eyes. Through honesty and authenticity, Lynn invites us into a journey of faith-based strength, hope and resilience in the face of crisis. She offers opportunity for us to reflect on how we deal with adversity, fear and uncertainty too.
5 WAYS A PANDEMIC IS LIKE HAVING CANCER
When this novel coronavirus invaded our globe, it was such a stark reminder of my long-ago cancer diagnosis that I actually said to myself: Now everyone will see how it feels to have your world fall apart right before your eyes.
For the past thirty years, my life has been divided into B.C. (Before Cancer) and A.C. (After Cancer) and now yours is too: Before COVID-19 and After COVID-19.
In 1990 when my 36-year-old world was rocked with stage 3 cancer, my pastor-husband was nearly paralyzed with fear that he would bury yet-another wife. Our little girls, ages 8, 10 and 12, tried to adjust to a bunch of babysitters and a mommy who either was lying on the couch or puking in the bathroom. I took a leave of absence from my newspaper reporter job and got replacements for my many volunteer church positions.
All the busyness of our happy home came to a screeching halt as we focused on defeating this unwelcome intruder.
So here are 5 ways today’s pandemic reminds me of that cancer diagnosis (and don’t miss the last and most important one!)
NO GUARANTEES—I remember thinking that it would be much easier to go through the pain and anxiety of weekly chemo treatments for a year if I knew they definitely would cure me. But there was no such guarantee—only the sobering fact that I had about a 40-percent chance of surviving. (Wouldn’t you like some guarantees regarding all your virus precautions?)
NO PLANS—Friends would ask if I wanted to go somewhere or do something on a certain day, but I couldn’t make definite plans because I couldn’t predict how I would be feeling. People tried to encourage me by saying things like “Just take it one day at a time.” Honestly, there were days when I was just trying to get through the next hour or even the next five minutes. (Wouldn’t it be nice to have definite dates to travel, go out to dinner, get a haircut?)
NO PEACE—Thoughts of cancer, my uncertain future and plenty of what-ifs filled my mind each day (and night!) I knew it wasn’t good to worry, so I worried that I worried too much! (Don’t you wish you didn’t think about COVID-19 every single day?)
NO NORMALCY—How I longed for life to return to normal. I just wanted my happy B.C. life back. And deep down inside I wondered if that ever would really happen. (Don’t you yearn to turn back the clock on social distancing and disinfecting everything?)
But there is one more “NO” which links these trying circumstances and it is the most important one:
NO DENYING GOD’S FAITHFULNESS—Because my life felt out-of-control, it brought me to my knees. And as I lifted to God my empty hands, my tear-filled eyes and my aching heart, He poured His promises, His power, and His peace into my life.
In 1995 on the fifth anniversary of my cancer surgery, I wrote a poem which is just as relevant today:
When your world is crashing down around you, trust Him.
When what is unfolding doesn’t make sense, trust Him.
When you see no light at the end of the tunnel, trust Him.
When your silent tears spill down, trust Him.
When the pain refuses to subside, trust Him.
When your heart screams, “Why?” trust Him.
When you have more questions than answers, trust Him.
When the devil tells you otherwise, trust Him.
When it’s the last thing you feel like doing, trust Him.
When there’s simply nothing else to do, trust Him.
Lynn Eib is a newspaper reporter-turned author, a passionate encourager, and always a truth-teller. She has six titles published by Tyndale House, including the award-winning Peace in the Face of Cancer.
Connect with me, Laura Padgett, on Twitter @lauraleepadgett or my Facebook Author Page
Check out the books I have published:
- “Dolores, Like the River,” available at Westbow Press, Barnes & Noble, Amazon and all major online retailers.
- The award-winning “Jesus in Shorts: Twenty-five Shorts Stories of Life-Changing Jesus Moments,” available now at Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Or see the Events tab on this website for locations where I will be selling and signing my books.
See the Buy Books tab on this website for other books I am featured in, including “Chicken Soup for the Soul” books and Xulon Press, “Letters to America”.