Saturday, August 09, 2014

Sin Cancer

The following is an article I wrote for the weekly church bulletin I edit.
Most of my friends know by now that I’m in a battle with renal/lung cancer. The strange thing is, I don’t feel any different. I suppose that if I woke up feeling like I do now twenty years ago, I might have noticed the change. But it gradually slipped up on me. Inch by inch, the cancer has taken over my body, but I feel fine. There’s an old cliché about putting a frog in a pot of water and starting a fire under it. The water gradually gets warmer and warmer, but the frog doesn’t notice until it’s too late and the water is boiling. That’s how this cancer was with me. I didn’t notice it until it just showed up on a CT scan one day. If it hadn’t been for the CT scan, I still wouldn’t know.

Sometimes we tend to be somewhat oblivious to what is going on. We get focused on unimportant things and fail to pay attention to what really matters. Others may notice changes, but often they don’t warn you about it. That actually happened in my case. A CT scan two years ago showed a mass on my kidney that was mentioned in passing on a report by the radiologist who interpreted the scan. The doctor that ordered the scan was more interested in my burst appendix and failed to notice (or at least failed to mention) the problem with my kidney. It wasn’t until a second scan was done a couple of months ago, and I was accidentally sent the report, that I found out about it. The mass had doubled in size. It now had a solid hold on my right kidney and has moved into both of my lungs as well.

Yet, like I said, I feel fine. Sure, I have aches and pains. I can’t stand up for more than a few minutes without my back feeling like someone is poking a knife in it. I can’t walk more than 100 feet without stopping to catch my breath. But that’s just part of getting old, isn’t it? That’s what I told myself anyway. There’s nothing wrong with me. But there was.

That’s the way sin works too. Sin Cancer. It’s a gradual process. Little by little, it creeps into your life and you don’t even realize it. Or, if you do notice it, you don’t worry about it. You tell yourself that it’s not that big of a deal. Given time, it gains a solid hold that can be impossible to break on your own.

I’ve just started taking pills called “Votrient” that will hopefully stop the growth of my renal cancer, but not without a cost. I can look forward to some nasty side effects. I don’t know yet how my body will react, but none of the side effects are pleasant. The doctors say my form of cancer can’t be cured, but maybe someday they will figure it out. The best they can do is put it in remission. At the moment, it sounds like I’ll be taking poison pills of one type or another for the rest of my life…and they’re not cheap.

The cure for sin cancer is available today. It’s free and has been available for two thousand years. It’s called “Jesus.” He sacrificed his life as atonement for the sins of the human race. To atone means to reconcile or repay; it is to set things right. Jesus made reconciliation between God and mankind for all time. Like I said, it’s free. All you have to do is accept it. Believe that Jesus was the Son of God and accept his sacrifice for your sin. Acknowledge your belief by confessing it and being baptized to remove sin from your life. That’s pretty simple. Side effects? Yeah, there are a few, not the least of which is eternal life.  Take the cure for sin cancer today before it’s too late.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

While I am not a religious person, this is well written and thought provoking. Take care.