//2.22.22// hugs, ports, and twos//
This past week has been the calm before the storm. Kristi has continued to improved and recover from her surgery 4 weeks ago. I love watching her move around better and better each day. It’s interesting because she doesn’t think she is getting better. When I watch her it’s like seeing one of your friends after summer break – did they get taller and stronger? The changes are subtle and small, but she is way further down the road than she knows.
Today is a big day! Not just because it’s 2.22.22! Kristi loves these number days by the way. This whole week is a bunch of palindromes. She loves that!! No, today is a big day because she gets her port placed. This will be a huge blessing – This is what we’ve been told by friends that have received a port for chemo and immunotherapy treatments.
Kristi is checked into the OR and is now undergoing surgery. They gave her something we haven’t seen before – it’s called a Bair Hugger. It’s a hospital gown with a place to plug in a warming unit. Super cool. I told Kristi we need one of these for the house with a place to plug in to warm her feet!
Now to the twos
I’ve been thinking about life and work and play. Part of life is bad experiences. Even when we play, there is chance of injury. Remember those fun trampoline times as a kid? What about paint balling or roller blading? All fun comes with a chance of pain. No one is exempt from suffering in life. No one can escape difficulties. You may get through some of your life unscathed, but that is rare and not much of a blessing – I’ll explain.
First, if you’ve never read Ecclesiastes, you should take some time to read (or listen on the Bible app) to the Teacher as he explains the meaningless nature of life. He basically says that good and bad things happen to both good and bad people. So what’s the point? Here are a couple examples of his words. Because of today, we will only look at twos:
“So I said, “Laughter is silly. What good does it do to seek pleasure?”” Ecclesiastes 2:2
“So what do people get in this life for all their hard work and anxiety?” Ecclesiastes 2:22
As bleak as these two Scriptures seems, they are nothing compared to the complaints Solomon hurls throughout Ecclesiastes. He says out loud what we all are thinking. What’s the point? Why do I try? Why are things so difficult when I’m trying to live a peaceful life? Why is this happening to me when I don’t deserve it? How is that person prospering while I’m suffering? And the questions continue on and on.
Here’s what’s important to note. God never promises a path of ease for anyone. He told us that life is short and full of trouble. He told us that rain falls on the just and unjust alike. He tells us to expect trouble. This is not a negative approach to life, it is actually foundational to joy.
Joy has nothing to do with the lack of trouble or sickness or problems. Joy is much deeper. Joy is supernatural and is tied to hope. Hope is tied to something beyond ourselves. Solomon eventually came to this conclusion at the end of his book.
I love the final chapter! He says, Remember over and over. Remember your Creator. Here’s a sample (sorry to break the twos run):
“Yes, remember your Creator now while you are young, before the silver cord of life snaps and the golden bowl is broken. Don’t wait until the water jar is smashed at the spring and the pulley is broken at the well. For then the dust will return to the earth, and the spirit will return to God who gave it.” Ecclesiastes 12:6-7
Then right at the end he says these powerful words:
“That’s the whole story. Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is everyone’s duty.” Ecclesiastes 12:13
The final conclusion for the meaningless nature of life: Fear God! Obey Him! How could joy come from this kind of submission? How could joy be experienced when life seems to be so meaningless?
The Creator has set life in motion. Everything is in His purview and control. Everything is in His hands. Nothing happens without Him knowing, permitting, and sustaining. He IS joy! Knowing Him is joy. Following Him is joy. Trusting Him is joy. Believing Him is joy. Life is full of joy because we trust, believe, and follow. If we never suffered, we wouldn’t experience the joy of supernatural trust and hope.
Today, Kristi experienced a Bair Hugger, a chemo port, and a day full of twos. I have experienced reconnecting with nurses and Doctors and staff. I also got to buy a bag of Tom’s Waves Vinegar and Salt chips in the cafeteria (another story for another day). Life is good! God is good! Joy is overflowing! We still Trust the Creator! He is greater than a day full of twos!