Conversation with Myself

“I’m dying,” said I.

“I know.  How far would you go?”  said she.  “How far would you go to be free?”

“Free of the thing that is killing me?  Cut it out!  Carve and slice, burn and dice, poison it until it disappears.  I surrender to the physician’s knife and knowledge.  In short: do whatever it takes.  Come what may, I want to live.”

“But how?  How would you live?  Gouge out an eye?  Cut off a limb?  Less a piece, what becomes of the whole?”

“Missing a piece?  Or missing peace?  What peace is there when my pieces won’t play fair?  What good is a whole body if the body is dead?  Give me instead a hole in the body, if the body with the hole is healthier than the body whole.  Alive to death at last, I will thunder death to that which might steal this life before its time.”

“Which life?” she replied.  “Do you really trust the Physician?  To cut out anger?  Or burn out hate?  To answer and empty your ravenous envy and greed?  To release you from bitterness, that wasting disease that numbs all the hearts senses?  Would you part with your eye if that eye is now dark?”

“Is it though?  Dark it may be, I can still see … or … think I can see.  Is that not the real world before me?  Filled with beauty and empty of meaning?  Vanity, vanity!” I cry.  And yet I yearn for another day.  What of that?  “You may be right.” I said.  “If I have wrapped myself in dark light and comforted my bitter heart with enabling platitudes, then death is not at the door.  It is inside already and I cannot see it.  Will I trust the Physician?”

“Better a hole in the body than a dead body whole,” she said again.

6 thoughts on “Conversation with Myself

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  1. Thanks for the helpful illustration and parallels, Lillis! Interestingly, the more I think about it, the more it seems that the Great Physician’s work of removing my anger, envy, bitterness, etc. leaves me more whole than before! Living with those emotions feels (at least to me) like a dark hole burning through my whole being. When my thyroid cancer fell like a death blow to an already struggling view of God’s love for me personally (due to coming in the middle of an ongoing, multi-year, daily struggle with chronic diseases and treatments), that anger burned for months. I could hardly even ask Him to take it away because I almost didn’t think He cared enough. Or rather… I thought He was doing something “good” for His big purposes at the careless expense of little me. Oh, how tenderly He showed me otherwise. And one day I realized the anger was gone – how or where, I’ll never know. All by His healing grace!

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  2. Amazing stuff ! I read your latest blog several times over the weekend. I kept sneaking a few minutes to read it as I was working one of those full on weekends but now have the time to respond. Be assured of our prayers and be assured that the welcome mat is out should you feel like a walk along the Thames to the Bounty again!

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  3. Wonderful insights Lillis. I’ve had this in my inbox for a while and read it several times since it first arrived. Each time I’m so impressed by the level of self-awareness and self-management that you express. It is a rare gift to be able to express what many others feel but aren’t able to express for themselves.


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