Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. -2 Corinthians 5:8 (ESV)
It has been a while since I have posted anything in my blog. Perhaps I have been feeling a little sorry for myself and have avoided it with a “what’s the use” attitude. As my friends and associates know, I suffered a heart attack last year and have had a year of battling heart failure and now other health issues that may have arisen from the plethora of ‘specialists’ I have to see and the drugs they prescribe. I must confess it has left me a little angry with Hartford Healthcare and bitter with the medical field in general.
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. -1 Thes. 5:16-18 (ESV)
Somewhere along the way I strayed from the practice of giving thanks in all things. Not only must I be thankful for the things I find not so pleasant, but also remember the many things I have to be grateful for that I have learned and experienced along the way this year.
God has chosen to give me another year of life that did not seem like it might happen at the time. December 17, 2021 I was rushed to Hartford Hospital, had stents placed within my heart and spent a week there mostly in I.C.U. — not exactly getting a lot of optimism from the doctors. Mostly it was “I don’t know yet” or “I’m a little surprised you are still alive.” I’ve come some distance from that time and place and have had more time with my wife, filled with reminders of the things of greatest importance that have been obscured from my sight (in a spiritual sense). I also continue to work, being blessed to have the opportunity to do so because of the flexibility the museum has afforded me.
Sure, I have several challenges to deal with from day to day and a bevy of doctors I see to assist with those issues, but the alternative would be an absence from this life that God has not chosen to subject me to yet. The thought of my departure leaves me sad, but only in the sense that I would be away from my wife and friends. It is hard to think of letting go of earthly things and embrace only the precious things of God. One of those precious things is the fact that I will be in the presence of Jesus when that time comes and will see her and my closest friends (who are believers) again. I can only imagine how all consuming that will be. It is doubtful I will concern myself with any earthly things when I am in His presence. If anything, I will likely think of my loved ones here only with eager anticipation of the joy that they too will experience with Him. As the Apostle Paul was inspired to write so long ago, to be absent from the body is to be present with the Lord (2 Corinthians 5:8). I must hang on to that fact and strive to replace that fear with faith.