Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Playing Through Pain

"Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials" (James 1:2 NASB)

I get many inspirations through running.  Although, jogging can be hot, tiring, and painful, it gives me a great opportunity to clear my mind and think about life decisions.  It's also a great chance to pray because it limits the number of distractions in my life.  Perhaps the only distractions during the jog would be the occasional dog who may bark at me in the neighborhood or a car travelling on my street.  Yet I focus on finishing the run.

Last week I went running and began to develop a migraine headache.  I've had them for years on occasion.  I have what would be called "classic migraines" in that I have an "aura" or warning that a headache is coming.  For me, this aura involves having blurred vision in my left visual field.  This usually occurs several minutes before the headache comes.  The first time this occurred to me years ago I thought I was having a stroke.  Now I don't panic when the blurred vision occurs but simply take some Tylenol as soon as possible.  In most instances the blurred vision goes away after a few minutes and the headache never develops.

However, during this instance while running, I was not sure what to do.  The blurred vision started shortly after my run and I had no access to Tylenol.  In addition, the run was on a straight street.  Thus the farther I ran in one direction, the farther I would have to run to get back to my car.  So, I had a couple of options.  For example, I could stop running and walk back to the car.  On the other hand, maybe I could shorten the length of my run and get back to the car as soon as possible.   That's exactly what I decided to do.  Try to run at least a minor distance and then treat the blurred vision and impending headache as soon as possible.  So, I ended up running only a little over a mile. 

Yet, to my surprise, as I got closer and closer to my car, the blurred vision began to dissipate. It was practically gone when I got to the car.  I imagine I took some Tylenol at that point but it impressed me in that I had worked through my discomfort while running.  In other words, I had done as some athletes would proclaim, I had "played through the pain".

Playing through pain, that's how we sometimes have to live our lives.  Keep going, keep moving, in spite of the discomfort.  Don't let the affliction afflict you. Sometimes life hurts and illness or circumstances try to bog us down.  Yet, when we reach the finish line in accomplishing a task (in spite of the difficulties), there is much joy.  I'm sure I would have felt good about myself if the run had not been eventful.  However, after completing the run under adverse circumstances, I felt fantastic, not only for finishing the jog but for learning something new about life as well.

To learn more about my victory over adverse circumstances, check out my book, "A Place I Didn't Want To Go: My Victory Over Cancer' on Amazon and Kindle.  It can be accessed at:




Friday, June 14, 2013

No Escape (Trussville Tribune Article)

I had an article published in The Trussville Tribune regarding a comical experience while visiting a music store.  Check it out at:


The article doesn't really deal with cancer but hope you enjoy it.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Doing The Right Thing

I heard about a man who customarily went to church every Sunday.  His wife usually went with him.  However, one Sunday, he just didn't want to attend.  After he turned off his alarm clock, he mentioned to his wife several reasons why he didn't want to go on this particular Sunday.  For example, he was tired and needed extra sleep.  Also he mentioned some of the unfavorable conditions in the church, stating,  "The people aren't very friendly and no one ever talks to me".  In addition, the music and the preaching were uninspiring.  To make matters worse, there was also a light rain falling outside.  Finally, after he mentioned all of his reservations about attending his wife replied, "Honey, I understand why you don't want to go today.  However, you have to go...you're the pastor!"

Sometimes we have to do the right thing in spite of our circumstances.  Being an off day from work today, I went jogging in my community.  Even though I was tired from a long week of work, I commenced to running.  At first, I hated it.  I had to run up a rather large hill and sensed that this run would be a rather unenjoyable workout.  Eventually I made it to the top of the hill in spite of my physical and mental anguish.  As I continued to run, I picked up a certain rhythm and the run wasn't quite as difficult.  However, the running was still tough.  The weather was hot and humid.  My feet hurt.  I was thirsty.  Nevertheless, I ultimately completed my run (roughly three miles in distance).  Even though I dreaded the run at first, at the end, I was glad I had put forth the effort.  I felt better about myself.  I felt more healthy.  I also felt less guilty when I engorged myself at a fast food restaurant afterwards with a sandwich and tater tots.  So, my running, as Wilford Brimley used to say in the Quaker Oats commercial was "the right thing to do".

Jesus also did the right thing in spite of circumstances.  Hebrews 12:2 states how "...Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, for the joy set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God".  This wasn't easy, the Scripture attesting to how He wanted to turn back from the cross.  Luke 22:42 mentions how He prayed, "...Father, if Thou art willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Thine be done."  But Jesus persevered, was crucified and rose again.  I am so glad He ultimately did the right thing for me.  My sins are washed away by His atoning sacrifice, and I have a home in heaven prepared for me.

When I was going through chemotherapy, it was extremely painful, both physically and emotionally.  I was tired.  I was nauseated,  I was even hospitalized on several occasions.  There were times when I felt I could not endure any more agony.  But looking back, now that I'm cancer free, it was the right thing to do.

If you wish to know more about my cancer story and survival, check out my book, "A Place I Didn't Want To Go: My Victory Over Cancer" on Amazon and Kindle.  It can be accessed at: