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Cancer: 11 years later

By Scott Tibbs, March 21, 2008

Eleven years ago today, I had my left testicle surgically removed because there was a malignant tumor growing inside of it. I've written about this before, but here are the basic facts again. Testicular cancer is the most common form of cancer in men between 15 and 34 years of age, but has an extremely high survival rate if caught early. Symptoms of TC include a lump in either testicle, enlargement of a testicle, a feeling of heaviness in the scrotum, a dull ache in the lower abdomen or the groin, a sudden collection of fluid in the scrotum, pain or discomfort in a testicle or the scrotum, enlargement or tenderness of the breasts.

It is amazing to think it has been 11 years since I walked into Parkview Hospital in Fort Wayne for the surgery. It does not seem like it has been that long. And while it might sound strange, I thank God for allowing me to have cancer. Coming face to face with one's own mortality, especially at a young age, is a way for God to "get your attention". God has used other things to get my attention over my life, including a very nasty stomach ailment a few years ago that brought me as low as I have ever been in my life.

Suffering is part of our life because of the curse that sin has brought upon this planet. Suffering also serves to strenghten our faith and trust in Him. But through it all, our Father in heaven is with us and never abandons us. It is appropriate that the 11th anniversary of my cancer surgery falls on Good Friday, where we commemorate Jesus Christ offering Himself as the perfect sacrifice for our sins. Today is a good day to be alive and to serve my King.