On Tuesday night I visited my brother-in-law in the hospital. He had been admitted to re-insert a feeding tube into his stomach. Several weeks ago, he was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer.

I will never forget the conversation we had a couple of days later. He said, “Tim, they say I have Stage 4 throat cancer. You know, there is no such thing as Stage 5.”

What a sobering thought! According to his physicians, he was in the final stage. He knew the end could be very near. Yet, in a time like that, he held his head up and said, “I don’t know what is going to happen, but I know God is in control. I want to focus the rest of my life on making it better.”

In conversations since then, he has talked about some areas in his life that he wants to improve. His focus is to make whatever time he has remaining his best. Shouldn’t we do the same?

Last week, during another appointment, his doctor informed him that his cancer was in fact at Stage 3, not Stage 4. What great news!

This made me realize a lot about perspective. How could it ever be great news to be told that you have Stage 3 throat cancer? Only when you consider the alternative.

Life is all about perspective. Through what lens do you see your life? If it’s through a lens of gloom and doom, take another look.

Life filtered through poor perspective is like light filtered through a dirty window. Take time to clean the window through which you view your life, and you just might be surprised at what you see.

My brother-in-law has found a way to focus on improving the days he has left. The truth is that none of us knows just how much more time will be given to us.

What’s stopping us from sharing his perspective?