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Ryan Ross
Ryan Ross

Everything Happens For A Reason: And Other Lies...

I got thousands of letters and emails. I still get them every day. I think it is because of the questions I asked. I asked: How do you live without quite so many reasons for the bad things that happen? I asked: Would it be better to live without outrageous formulas for why people deserve what they get? And what was so funny and so terrible was, of course, I thought I asked people to simmer down on needing an explanation for the bad things that happened. So what did thousands of readers do? Yeah, they wrote to defend the idea that there had to be a reason for what happened to me. And they really want me to understand the reason. People want me to reassure them that my cancer is all part of a plan. A few letters even suggested it was God's plan that I get cancer so I could help people by writing about it. People are certain it is a test of my character or proof of something terrible I've done. They want me to know without a doubt that there is a hidden logic to this seeming chaos. They tell my husband, while I'm still in the hospital, that everything happens for a reason, and then stammer awkwardly when he says, "I'd love to hear it. I'd love to hear the reason my wife is dying."

Everything Happens for a Reason: And Other Lies...

Now faced with death, she began to ponder the irony of her diagnosis in light of her area of expertise. Kate spent a great deal of time around people who believed everything happens for a reason and that an illness of this type was a sign of sin or failure in her own life, yet she knows that realistically there is no magic spiritual formula that is going to shrink her tumors. In contemplating what it means to die without the types of certainties that those who've surrounded her believe in, she finds beauty, humor, and poignancy in the little things in life and discovers some hard-won truths about what it means to truly live.

Do virtue and success go together? If I am good will only good things happen to me? Kate Bowler was forced to face these false narratives when she got a life-changing diagnosis. She was living the life of her dreams- a new job in academia, newly married to her high school sweetheart, and finally pregnant after years of infertility- when she found out she had stage four cancer. How could this perfect world of hers come to an end?! In the shocking reality of waking up to the uncertainty of life, she realized that the idea that everything happens for a reason isn't a guarantee that only good will come to you but that even in the seeming dark times of life, there is love, goodness and beauty to be found. 041b061a72


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