Serve As You Seek Healing

These days a great number of people have been visiting Houston for cancer treatment. Many of them are non-believers. Some of them became Christians after attending our church when they came here. I think this recent influx of people is related to the work of Brother Lee, who used to serve as a shepherd in our church and is now the director of the National Cancer Institute of Korea. When he was working at M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, he treated two well known Koreans for lung cancer. One of them was the CEO of Samsung, the other a former CEO of Hyundai Auto Company. Many people in Korea used to consider cancer a near fatal disease with no cure, but the successful treatment of these two highly visible persons changed this perception and raised the profile of M.D. Anderson in Korea. As a result, many well-to-do Koreans started coming to Houston for cancer treatment.

As you know, my wife was also treated at M.D. Anderson. As I watched her fight cancer I learned a few lessons. One of them is that you must live your life, even when you are not yet completely cured. It is foolish to postpone doing things you can do now in the single-minded pursuit of a cure, pushing everything back until you are completely healed. You may end up delaying your life forever, because in a strict sense there is no complete cure for cancer. There is always the possibility of recurrence.

My wife and I have made a commitment to live a normal life as best as we can. Health itself is not as important as what you do with your health. Life is not worth living if we constantly worry that the cancer was not fully cured, if we constantly worry that the cancer may recur even after treatment. We would be wasting our lives worrying.

Human beings all die eventually. Even when you are cured of a disease, you will still die someday. That being the case, it is not wise to make extending your years the sole purpose of your life. Instead, we should seek to make our lives full and meaningful, regardless of the number of years we are given. Suppose that with great effort and care for your health, you managed to live 10 years longer. But if the time in that decade is spent completely on the effort to live those extra years, what good is it to live 10 years longer? Isn’t it better to spend one year, if that’s the time given to you, serving your fellow human beings and God?

It is good and right to pursue good health. But it is more important to serve with whatever you have. Be careful that you do not make maintaining good health the sole purpose of your life at the expense of serving God or others.

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