Cancer… passion… cause

Right now I am doing some reading that is well outside of my comfort zone both in terms of content and normal interest. I am reading The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer.

This is the story of the doctors, patients, researchers, activists, and warriors who have fought the battle against cancer.

This story is filled with the accounts of skeptics turned believers, victims turned heroes, outcasts turned trailblazers, and “failures” that led to breakthroughs.

Some of the words that come to my mind as I read through this amazing account written by Siddhartha Mukherjee are:

  • Desperation
  • Determination
  • Panic
  • Frustration
  • Fanatical
  • Heroism
  • Visionary
  • Risk
  • Courage
  • Heart
The passion and intensity with which these warriors fought and continue to fight cancer… hunted and continue to hunt the cure for this “emperor of all maladies” is breathtaking.
Many gave their lives for this cause. Nothing was more important. The risk they took in laying their own reputation on the line… the criticism they endured as they broke new ground in the fight against this disease… the dogged determination they displayed as they suffered setback and defeat often resulting in death of patients (many times children) and public humiliation all point to one thing… they were gripped by a cause that called and demanded everything of them.
Because they answered the call and gave everything it required many people are alive today having stared the “emperor of all maladies” in the eye and won.
Do you have a cause that has gripped you like this? Are you called by something so extraordinary that you will take great risk, suffer the pain of humiliation, and press on even when the quest seems impossible?
I pray that we will all find such a cause and give our lives completely to it.

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