June 28: Relay for Life


It's a dirty word. 

And it will remain just that, just an abstract concept or a disease, until it hits you close to home. A friend. A relative. A family member. 


Then cancer is no longer just a dirty word. It has a face. A name. It becomes personal. It breaks your heart. There are real people who struggle with this disease every day. Some will survive, many won't. 

It's funny how in our selfish human nature, terrible things--cancer, human trafficking, poverty, mental illness, abuse--are so incredibly easy to ignore until they break into our tiny bubble of a world and wreck everything we thought we knew. Until they have a face, and a name. But there is beauty and healing and comfort in the wreckage. There is restoration and hope. But we have to first acknowledge, feel and mourn the wreckage before we can experience any of that.

Relay for Life 2013. When Tosha was actively undergoing treatment for cancer, Clayton gave her his funny glasses so that "she would have more hair." Out of the mouth of babes...

And you know what that is? It's called love, and next to loving God, it's what we're on this earth to do. That's our calling, or mission. True love isn't like what you see in the movies. It's not always ooey gooey and warm and fuzzy. It's not what you want to do or what makes you happy. True love is completely opposite of selfishness. It puts others first, especially when it means sacrifice. True love runs toward when everything in you wants to run away.

Maybe it's not cancer. Maybe there's another burden that the Lord has placed on your heart. Maybe you've been ignoring the pull the meet someone you know in the depths of their pain and mess. And it's hard. It won't be easy. But there will be comfort and hope and healing and even joy on the other end, and you will never experience the true depth of those unless you first wade through the abyss of pain. 

What is the Lord calling you to run toward today?