#5: The light of life

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it … Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.” (John 1:1-5 & John 8:12)

At some stage after the Doctor told me I only had four weeks to live if I didn’t respond to treatment, I remember thinking, “I always thought my job as a Mother was to teach my daughters how to live well, but maybe instead I’ll have to show them how to die well.”

At the time a friend mentioned that years ago her cousin had Leukaemia & he’d survived & that now his family just sees his illness as being like a distant nightmare they’d woken up from. “How lucky, that’s what I want this to seem like for us,” I thought, and now thirteen years later that is how our family describes the time of my diagnosis and stem cell transplant. How lucky!

A friend of ours has just been diagnosed with Breast Cancer & she asked me “what did you do?” to survive. I’ll always share my experience when someone asks but I’m also always cautious answering that question because although I had what I consider to be a miraculous healing, I never want anyone to feel that if they or a loved one die from cancer it’s because they failed in some way to “manifest a miracle” or that God failed them; because despite what our society somehow covertly implies, death is not a failure.

I always say something like “this is what worked for me, it’s different for everyone, take what resonates with you, disregard what doesn’t.” And then I explain that I entered a deep state of prayer and meditation & I talk about the power of prayer by friends, family and strangers. I also took full advantage of world class modern medical science and given my poor prognosis asked to be part of medical trials. I had the laying on of hands and even a spiritual healer (both pretty intense experiences that I’d be happy to share with you over a cup of tea at the kitchen table, or a glass of wine!). I also dug up an old book ‘Metaphysical Meditations’ that I’d read when I had Chemo; visualising Christ’s Light filling my blood cells and bone marrow. And whenever I was scared (which was most of the time!) I filled myself and surrounded myself with Christ Light and I’d say “I am healed now.”

I told my friend all this not to overwhelm her or freak her out but just to let her know that I threw everything at healing so that I could raise my little girls to be little women, and that I did all this knowing that it might not work.

It’s strange writing about this stuff now because I really do kind of forget that it happened. For many years after I was healed I focused very gratefully on the here and now, the only moments we really have. Of course there is deep meaning in living like that but it was also, for me, essentially a kind of trauma response I think. So while I still do find great meaning in focusing mindfully on the present moment, I have also started just peeking ahead to the future, which feels a bit liberating. And I try to do both wrapped in God’s Divine White Light. Ω

Reflect: Visualise Christ’s light in your body. Imagine it radiating from your bones, lighting up your bloodstream, illuminating every cell. In your mind’s eye, wander around your body. Where does the light shine brightly? Where are there shadows? Talk with God about this.

#Lent2020 © Sanctuary, 2020.


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