This is Jade, she is an amazing girl. She is funny, smart, obviously adorable, full of life and she has cancer. However, cancer is something she has, it is not who she is. Yes, she is a fighter and has had to deal with more in her short time here, than I, even as an adult, have ever had to endure.

But she is more than even that. She is JOY. After meeting her, when I think of pure joy I will picture curly red hair, laughing at nothing, spinning in a circle, and being miles away from reality.

Jade was in the hospital the week before and it didn’t look like she was going to be able to join us for the Casting Crowns show on Friday night, but against all odds and through a little miracle she was released and was able to come to the show. Her mom said it was a thrill for her to meet me and thanked me for spending time with her. However, what Jade and her mom didn’t know was how much meeting her would mean to me.

I have been in a bit of a dark place lately and have been struggling to find my way out. I have been praying that God would help me change my heart and my attitude, but I just have felt stuck. Jade got me unstuck.

She was a reminder to me of all the many blessings I have and how we have a choice in life. We cannot always choose what we go through, but we can choose how we go through it.

After meeting Jade and being inspired by her, I am pro choice. I am reminded to choose JOY. Choose to live life without worry even though there might be things to worry about. Choose to love things that might seem on the surface unlovable, and choose to spin around in circles laughing at life.

For a little girl fighting cancer, I am sure the bad days could easily outnumber the good ones if she chose to let them, but instead Jade chooses to fill her heart with the word of God and not the fear of what she is facing. For her, “Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying.” -Romans 12:12 is more than a verse she heard at church, it is the way she chooses to live life.

Jade might only be 5 years old, but she taught me a valuable lesson. “Everything is awesome” if we choose to see it that way.

So while Jade thought it was cool to meet me, she is living proof that we never know what God is doing behind the scenes or the impact we will have on someone’s life no matter how old or young we are.

Thank you Jade, the pleasure was truly all mine!


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