The surgeon who placed the infusaport for my chemotherapy treatments and his wife were long-time friends, going way back to junior-high-school youth group. After he performed the surgery I told him I was very disappointed with my port because I had tapped it several times and was still waiting for Scotty to beam me up. My husband and brother groaned. They knew I had been waiting all day to use that line. "And," I added, "you scarred me for life." Ha, ha. I was smiling. I was so funny.
I really wasn’t very worried about surgery for the port. It was minor. I had just had major surgery where they removed everything, along with the kitchen sink, so expected the infusaport surgery would be a piece of cake. Wrong. I woke up in the middle of the night and realized the pain medication had worn off. I was going to take my next dose with a drink of water when I realized I couldn’t sit up or roll over. I was stuck. I was still recovering from my abdominal surgery, so couldn’t use those muscles and now discovered I could not use my left arm or shoulder either. I felt like a belly up turtle, struggling to flip over. I woke up my husband. “Help, I can’t move.” He had to lift me up into a sitting position. I depended on him for all movement for the next several days.
“Beam me up Scotty.” This new world was a little strange. It wasn’t what I was used to. The landscape was alien. There were waiting rooms, and robotic equipment. The people dressed differently with scarfs and bandanas, wigs and hats. The language had foreign words I did not understand. Brachytherapy? Carboplatin? And my body felt different. The gravitational force must have been stronger in this new atmosphere. It pulled at my legs and weighed my body down. The oxygen must have been thinner, I was sure of it because I felt so tired. I was no longer able to be independent. What kind of planet was this?
This world is not our home. Times of illness, and trials, remind us that our permanent place is with Jesus. Yes, He has work for us here on this earth. He has given us people to love and to share our lives. Yet this world is still our temporary dwelling. We are residents here for a little while, but it is not our home. In Jesus’ last days before He was crucified He talked to His disciples and tried to prepare them for what was coming. The unimaginable was around the corner. His disciples would face unprecedented disappointment, confusion and fear. But Jesus knew the rest of the story. He knew what was beyond the unknown. He tried to get them to see a bigger picture. He explained to them that they did not belong to this world (John 15:18). What happened here on this earth, on this planet, was not the final story.
There is another world beyond this one, another life, and we have a place there, an eternal home. Jesus said to His disciples,
“Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” John 14:1-4.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33.
Today's post is an excerpt from The Bald Headed, Tattooed, Motorcycle Mama's Devotional Guide: For Women Battling Cancer & Those Who Love Them Copyright 2013 by Sara Nelson O'Brien.
All photos are courtesy of Pixabay.