Wednesday, October 05, 2005
a different kind of battle

The Wudan / bible study crew of guys and I cancelled our regular study to go and visit Dennis at the UWMC. As hard as it was to see him at the hospital again and hearing all the cold details of his current condition, I'm thankful that we could at least spend time with him to just hang out, talk, and pray for him.

I really think it is both God's grace and a testament to Dennis' character that he's the one whose seems strongest in dealing with the situation. If any of us other guys were in his situation, I'm not sure we'd handle it so well.

Of course, maybe the hardest thing that most of us are wrestling with is why this whole situation is happening in the first place. When you think of the things that guys of our age and background are supposed be dealing with, I don't think most 20-somethings expect to be fighting something like tumors and bad health. Dennis is neither a heavy smoker or a heavy drinker, and to my knowledge has never done drugs. He doesn't eat babies or massacre helpless woodland animals, and yet, this is the painful path that has been given to him to walk.

It all makes me say "WTF" a lot more these days too.

Honestly, visiting him at the hospital brings back memories of other hospital visits, and though I was never presume to place my own issues on a pedestal above his own situation (because obviously, they're different), they're there in the back in my mind. Like David posted, it's the thorny matters of theodicy that can make it tough for anybody to cope, both the person suffering and those who care for him/her.

Sometimes the hardest enemy to fight is your own doubt.


Though it's not completely related, a quote from a book I was reading back when I was in Japan comes to mind again.

"Your pain is deep, and it won't just go away. It is also uniquely yours, because it is linked to some of your earliest life experiences.

Your call is to bring that pain home. As long as your wounded part remains foreign to your adult self, your pain will injure you as well as others. Yes, you have to incorporate your pain into your self and let it bear fruit in your heart and the hearts of others.

This is what Jesus means when he asks you to take up your cross. He encourages you to recognize and embrace your unique suffering and to trust that your way to salvation lies therein. Taking up your cross means, first of all, befriending your wounds and letting them reveal to you your own truth.

There is great pain and suffering in the world. But the hardest pain to bear is your own. Once you have taken up that cross, you will be able to see clearly the crosses that others have to bear, and you will be able to reveal to them their own ways to joy, peace, and freedom."

-Henri J.M. Nouwen


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in?scrip?tion (n-skrip-shun)n.
1. The act or an instance of inscribing.
2. Something, such as the wording on a coin, medal, monument, or seal, that is inscribed.
3. A short, signed message in a book or on a photograph given as a gift.
4. The usually informal dedication of an artistic work.
5. Jeremiah 31:33

the facts.
name. Gar AKA "that Chinese guy" "Sleepy.McSleeping"
ethnicity/nationality. Chinese/American, 4th gen.
location. Sea-Town, WA, USA Kawanishi, JAPAN
occupation. less-cynical poor grad student
age. younger than you think, older than you know



UnseenGC @ AIM
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