Most of you know I’m close to Christ because of my lifelong struggles with anxiety. Although He has freed me from so many of my fears, it’s something I still struggle with and the last three weeks have been no exception.
Three weeks ago, the dermatologist told my husband a spot on his hand “looked cancerous.” He had the sample taken for the biopsy and we waited…
After trying to diagnose for two years the cause of a nagging pain in my ribs, my doctor convinced me I should have a bone scan to rule out cancer. I scheduled the scan two weeks ago and waited…
For some, waiting isn’t big deal. I know. I’m married to someone with a very low blood pressure. Very low. He rarely worries about anything. Ever. People like me however, always imagine the worst case. I don’t have an earache, it’s a tumor. It’s not a rash, it’s shingles (which it actually was once). This time when I heard cancer (twice) however, something unusual happened.
The last three weeks were…normal. I was present with my family instead of being preoccupied with “what-ifs.” I enjoyed every day without that gnawing pit of anxiety in my stomach. I was rational and reasonable instead of wasting time searching Google for a diagnosis. Although the relaxed among us can’t appreciate what a big deal this is, those who live too often with a spirit of fear, can.
How can I explain my peace-filled waiting? Another test result I’ve waited for.
For five years I’ve asked God to show me his love in a tangible, undeniable, real way. Part of the reason for that request was a verse in 1 John I never understood: “There is no fear in love…” Although God had liberated me from so much anxiety, I wondered why I was still so fearful even though I loved God so much. Five years of learning, waiting and praying have helped me realize why.
I never understood 1 John because I thought it was about me loving God. Rather than focus on God’s unconditional and perfect love for me, I was always trying to love God “more” by being better and trying harder. I never understood God’s love because I did with that verse what I do with a lot of things.
I made it about me.
Jesus said he came to give abundant life. I’m beginning to understand the more my heart deeply knows what my brain has always understood, that His love is unconditional, radical, unchanging and has nothing to do with what I do or don’t do, the more I experience abundant life. And when in less than three months you almost lose your dad, you’re waiting for multiple test results and the bone scan indicates your shoulder has “degenerative deterioration” (aka, I’m getting old), living everyday to the fullest begins to mean more and more.
How’s God shown me His love recently? By giving me peace-filled, abundant living in the waiting.
P.S. All test results came back negative.