Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Quantity vs. Quality of Life

When you’ve been diagnosed with a terminal illness, you think more soberly about “numbering your days” (Ps. 90:12). Chemo/radiation treatments prescribed for cancer patients are not intended to cure, but to extend life. But there’s a downside: these can cause considerable discomfort! (Thank God, mine has been minimal!) Thus, each person, must consider how much pain he is willing to endure to extend “quantity of life” at the expense of “quality of life.”
Now here is a spiritual analogy that just screams for a spot on this blog. The Greek word in the phrase “abundant life,” zoe, means a different “quality of life” than bios. Paul says if we’re not “suffering the loss of all things,” we are not going to “gain Christ” (Phil. 3:8). That is, to have the quality of life Christ wants to give us (John 5:21), we must endure some discomfortBut don't worry; our Great Physician will never prescribe treatments that would cause more discomfort than we can bare.


  1. Greg,

    Sometimes the "suffering" comes in the form of not being noticed, of maybe having our friends (or even enemies) get public acclaim for something we did or said to inspire them, and them taking all of the credit for the good that resulted.

    Sometimes,when we do the right things in the shadows they remain there; whereas, others receive much applause for the few times someone actually "caught" them being good.

    Regardless, the pain of suffering can hit us just as much in our self-esteem (how we see ourselves in our emotional life) as in our physical bodies or any mental anguish over how life events affect us.

    Eternal life (zoe) in its quality gives us the firm assurance of having our names written in the Lamb's Book of Life. That is of so much more value than having the demons being subject to us...and we need a frequent reminder.


  2. and let endurance (because of suffering) have it perfect effect on you, that you may be complete, and lacking in nothing. (James 1)