It wasn't a bad kind of worry. It was just an honest, responsible kind of worry. "I need to be realistic. I need to make sure my affairs are in order."
|Photos by Ashelie Hartle|
But a tinge of doubt came in. I was no longer sure I could "maintain that attitude."
I turned to good, religious thoughts. "God's in control. It's faith that matters, not good attitude. A good attitude is the product of faith."
But I was no longer sure I could maintain faith, either. After all, doubt--no matter how small the amount--had already crept in.
To be honest, I was in that state for hours. I wasn't directly thinking all the thoughts I just wrote. Instead, I was maintaining a good attitude. I was being cheerful. I was talking with the nurse and trying to be as encouraging to her as possible. I was enjoying the day. I got 15 pages done on Thrilled to Death. I was enjoying the time with my wife as she came in and out from laundry, cleaning the trunk of the car, and other various errands. I was keeping up with others by Facebook between chapters of the book.
But by evening, at least compared to previous days, I was tired, and worse, I was unhappy.
Turn your eyes upon Jesus
Look full in his wonderful face
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of his glory and grace
A simple shift of attention.
No condemnation. No need for penance. My Father simply swooped me up in his arms, pulled me back to his bosom, and flooded me with grace.
Doubt? Doubt about what?
Doubt about walking with Jesus tomorrow? It's so good today. Why would that ever go away?
My job is to live in the presence of God. My job is to talk about what he's talking about. He's actually said something about my dying. He's said I'm not going to die, at least not from leukemia. So I say that as well.
But really, it doesn't matter.
Doubts that I can maintain a good attitude? I no longer care about a good attitude. My good attitude is, quite apparently, mostly useless and definitely fleeting. I want Christ's attitude. It's supernatural, powerful, and eternal.