I have felt so inadequate in my ability to “do something” while my brother (affectionately called H) fights cancer and recovers from his brain surgery. He suffers from the same disease that took our father’s life in 2008. I couldn’t “fix” it for my dad and I can’t “fix” this for my brother; he’s in God’s adequate hands. However, I did realize that I could offer hope to H each day to help him fight a battle I know he can win! He’s a warrior; an inspiration of hope himself, but even the greatest warrior needs a strong army supporting him. My desire is to uplift my brother and his family, just offer them a little more encouragement, and maybe I would somehow feel “useful” in this battle of a lifetime. I want to think I helped in a situation that is out of my control. It’s the only way I know how to contribute to this fight.
Our Life as One
I soon realized this “fight” is not only cancer…it’s all the struggles of life. It is our life, not lives. We become connected as our “lives” intertwine together; we are simply a component of one huge “life.” Sometimes it’s hard to wrap my mind around it, but it’s true. We have all survived piercing and devastating pain along with experiencing ecstatic joy. We each have had our triumphs and failures. We have been abused and we ourselves have hurt other people. We have been wrapped in bondage and tasted freedom. We have felt strength and weakness, confusion and clarity. We have been fearless and afraid. We have helped others in their time of need and we have grasped for support when we needed it ourselves. We are not that different; we are alike indeed. We all seek security, love, a better life and peace. We are all God’s children, alive together…now.
We are all going through difficult times from time to time whether it’s a super-stressful day, trouble with a wayward child, trying to find a better job or battling a life-threatening illness. We are all going through something. I want us to ban together and join forces so no one stands alone. The enemy always seeks out the weak or tries to isolate his prey from the protection of others so he can easily devour and destroy. Don’t fall victim in trying to do it all alone…I’ve tried. We weren’t created to live isolated. We were created for community and were meant to flourish in the positive support that can offer. I’ve been hurt by “community of others,” just as you may have been… but its time to risk involvement. Place yourself in an uplifting environment and surround yourself with encouraging people and let’s ban together as one.
In honor of my brother’s intense and fierce battle with melanoma, I am excited to launch a new campaign today… a campaign of H.O.P.E. (How Our Peace Endures.) I’m talking about yours and mine. How does your peace endure? Mine can only survive with HOPE. What does hope mean to you? Do you get enough of it? Where do you get it? Jesus Christ has been my “hope” in all situations. He has given me strength to prosper and endure while providing hope when the situations in my life were hopeless; He keeps my hope alive indeed! “I can do all this (LIFE) through him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:13). I also receive hope in the selfless acts of others, in kindness and in love.
It’s my prayer and purpose to bring us all closer together in a positive way. I passionately want to instill hope and encouragement to a negative and hurting world. Please help me do that by simply participating and/or spreading the word. My goal is to present a place where hope can always be found. That place may not always have the right words, or offer solutions to all the world’s problems but it will be a safe place to come for support and encouragement. Some days, I may need your support or words of encouragement. In fact, I know I will (it’s part of my imperfection!) All are welcome. If I can provide a place that offers you hope for today, then you can pass it on to others tomorrow and they can pass it on further; it grows exponentially. Before you know it, we’ve all made a difference. “Making a difference” can be a random act of kindness, a smile, a positive reinforcement…no matter how small the act, it could be the one that ultimately saves a life!
Come together with me and let’s make our own difference through peace, love and support. Sounds so simple and cliché, but if we start uplifting each other instead of tearing one another down, we will become stronger individually and also as a society. Get on board with me, don’t do this alone…you don’t have to be alone…I don’t have to be alone.
Keep moving forward and keep your hope alive. Join me in a daily search for hope and encouragement through my H.O.P.E (How Our Peace Endures) Blog along with posts on Facebook (Tanya Kilgore, Author) and Twitter (@TanyaKilgore). Let’s do this together and stay connected! Let’s spread H.O.P.E. together wherever we can…and let me know how your peace endures on this crazy journey called life!
Hope exists. Recovery is possible. Healing is waiting. Peace is here.