Don’t you just love doctors? Yes, I mean that facetiously. A surgeon who, two years ago, cut a sarcoma the size of a baseball from my leg is my favorite physician to both love and hate. I mean, he saved my life and saved my leg, so I am compelled to love him. I hate him because he never remembers me or anything about me, and always mistakes me for another patient. However, he never forgets to mention the great job he did on my leg. He is unbelievably vain.
When I speak of loving the doctor or hating the doctor, I am, of course, using hyperbole; I merely mean to say that we have a choice in how we view every situation in life. Within that one man, I find reason to rejoice or to begrudge. I choose to rejoice in the things I love about that doctor.
The Bible tells us to rejoice. Always! Rejoice in the Lord (Philippians 4:4).
Just two breaths later, Paul tells us to worry about nothing (Philippians 4:6).
Rejoice always. Be anxious for nothing… Be afraid of nothing. Those are tall orders. Some would say those are impossible orders. Yet, here is Paul writing to the Philippian Church and telling them to be anxious for nothing.
The two thoughts are tied together, rejoicing and the lack of anxiety. One may live more easily without fear and anxiety if she rejoices in everything. One worries less if he sees the bright side to even dire situations.
What was the bright side about removing a cancerous lump on my leg that even today gives me so much pain that I cannot walk more than a few yards without having it spasm? At the time, I could only rejoice in the fact that the doctor saved my leg and my life. In hindsight, I have much more to celebrate.
Had it not been for that cancer in my leg, the doctors never would have found colon cancer lurking silently in my gut. At least, they never would have caught it in time.
Had it not been for my leg, I would not have grown into a much deeper relationship with God.
Had it not been for my cancer, I would not have grown so much closer to my wife.
There are many more positive things that I could tell you that came as a result of a grave situation. I don’t have to list them; you see what I mean.
Fear not. Instead, rejoice.