Relgion News Service offers this Q&A with Joni Eareckson Tada:
Disability advocate Joni Eareckson Tada, long known as an evangelical icon and a wheelchair-bound quadriplegic who paints with a brush between her teeth, has faced a range of challenges since a diving accident left her paralyzed in 1967.
Now sheâ€™s facing another: breast cancer.
Tada, who turns 61 on Oct. 15, is undergoing chemotherapy and recently completed a new book, â€œA Place of Healing: Wrestling with the Mysteries of Suffering, Pain, and Godâ€™s Sovereignty.â€ Some answers have been edited for length and clarity.
Q: You have gone through a number of medical challengesâ€”quadriplegia, chronic pain, and now breast cancer. What are some basic lessons you have learned about suffering?
A: Itâ€™s good not to simply resign yourself to it. Itâ€™s also good not to submit or yield to it with its overtones of `Oh, poor me. I give up. I give inâ€ and not even coping or adjusting.