Forgiving cancer

At the start of this week I went to the funeral of someone I know who had passed away from cancer. It was interesting to observe that the sadness that was present wasn’t so much because he was gone as because cancer had taken him.

It’s the same thing that still hits me about the death of a family member years ago, an anger at the cancer that took him. It’s an anger that our bodies might betray us in such a way, for in some ways that’s what cancer looks like, cells that become self-centred and obsessed with multiplying, to the detriment of the rest of the body. And we haven’t yet found a way to reprimand these cells and make them fall back into line.

This morning as I was driving to college I was listening to the song Brother, and these words stood out to me.

Forgiveness is the garment

Of our courage

The power to make the peace

We long to know

Open up our eyes

To see the wounds that bind

All of humankind

I know that I’m still angry that cancer took my uncle. There’s an anger that we couldn’t do anything to stop those out-of-control cells. But there was something in this song this morning. Maybe its time for me to forgive those cells. To have courage, that I might then experience the peace we all long to know.


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