5 Ways to Pray for Your Chronically Ill Friend

5 Ways to Pray for Your Chronically Ill Friend

Hello there! If you’ve come here to learn how to pray for your chronically ill friend, I’m really excited that you’re taking this step to be a source of support for them. Here’s a short guide to praying for them. (This guide used to be available by download only, but it’s now in blog post form as well. Here’s the free PDF if you’d like to download it.)

Thank you so much for loving your friend well. They need you!

1) Pray for Physical Healing

Psalm 103:2-3 says, “Praise the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits – who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases. (NIV)

Let’s remember that the Lord can and does provide physical healing. Pray that the treatment your friend is undergoing would work and that doctors would have wisdom for how to treat. Don’t be afraid to pray that God would intervene and provide healing and relief from the physical pain and other symptoms. Ask God to supernaturally work and take away the physical burdens of the illness.

Read more

Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.

Why Hasn’t He Proposed Yet?

{Full Disclosure: Jonathan gave me permission to share this with you}

I went into my relationship with Jonathan believing that he was the one – the one I was going to marry. Our story is quite different than the average dating story.

We didn’t just meet each other, exchange numbers, text a lot, hang out, and then decide we should probably make it official. He didn’t go the more traditional route of asking me on a date to see how we interacted, either. In fact, Jonathan didn’t tell me that he liked me until I had moved back to China – halfway around the world. Not exactly an easy distance to travel to see one another…

Why hasn't he proposed yet?

We began to fall for each other while attending a Bible study at his church, which has now also become my church. Jonathan and I knew of each other back in high school but we weren’t friends. In fact, at one point I even had a friend who crushed on him and I remember saying something like, “He’s fine, I guess…” in response to her telling me about the crush. I never imagined that just a few short years later I’d find myself with feelings I couldn’t shake.

Read more

Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.

Held in the Fire

Today, I’m excited to share with you an article by one of my favorite writers, Glenna Marshall! Glenna has become a friend of mine through the Hope*Writers community and it has been a joy to get know her. Something we have in common is our experience with chronic pain. While enduring chronic illness can often leave one feeling hurt and discouraged, Glenna’s perspective and trust in Christ has been encouraging to me as I’ve walked in faith during this rough season. Let’s welcome Glenna! 


Pain is white and blue, the hottest center of a flame.

Not a gently flickering candle, but an explosion of blistering heat, a fire that blazes without burning out. It starts at the base of my spine and reaches out to my hips, radiating down my right leg with fiery tentacles that entangle themselves around my bones, wrapping tightly around nerve endings and tendons. My ribcage aches while pain slices back and forth across my spine until I’m certain my body will snap in two.

It might feel better if it did.

Held in the Fire

I have an autoimmune disease called Ankylosing Spondylitis. There’s a long, scientific explanation of how my body attacks itself, but the primary result is an inflammatory arthritis that feels much, much worse than it sounds. I lived with AS for five years of bent-over, crushing pain that wrenched me out of sleep every night and pressed me with fear every morning as I sluggishly worked to stand up straight. I didn’t look sick, but dawn always found me uncomfortably dozing while sitting up, surrounded by ice and heat packs and pain medication. The continual, abrasive nature of my pain sanded down any hope that I would ever feel normal again. Like most autoimmune diseases, mine didn’t come alone. It brought a host of other chronic diseases and disorders, ranging from annoying to excruciating, depending on what day it is.

Read more

It’s Been Rough, But God’s Been Gracious

I’d like to write a blog post telling you about how great I feel now that I have been on treatment for about two months. I’d like to tell you how happy I am and how I feel confident everyday. I’d like to tell you a lot of things.

But, the sad truth is that life is still pretty rough and it likely will be for a while.

It's Been Rough, But God's Been Gracious

Yes, I have had some good days interspersed amongst the bad, painful, horrendous days.

Those good days make me smile. When things are good, I have energy and I feel more like myself. It’s delightful!

But, the bad days still leave me hurting. They leave me questioning. They leave me suffering.

My prayer life has been changing since my health took a decline back in February. During some points of this health journey, I couldn’t pray. I didn’t feel like God was there. I could barely process a thought, let alone speak words in prayer.

Now, though, God has been meeting me. It’s amazing, actually. I always knew I could go to God during hard times and he would be there, but I had never been to a point of sheer desperation like this before. Now, I literally need  God’s strength to get me through the day.

Read more

Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.

A Different Take On New Year’s Resolutions

Extravagant Love As I prayed over my life to further grip God’s will for the coming year, I was convicted by the reality that most new year’s resolutions don’t last. God showed me that following Him with my whole life should be my focus. Living life to the fullest in 2014 is not about doing all kinds of cool things that make me feel good about myself, but about trusting God’s work in each area of my life.

 He laid on my heart that He loves me and that I am to love Him back. Thus, came the realization that this year isn’t going to be about a checklist.

There’s nothing wrong with to-do list resolutions. I actually find writing tasks and crossing them off to be quite therapeutic. However, that’s not what I’m meant to do this year. God’s asking me to trust him with the small things – something that comes from the overflow of His extravagant love.

Read more

Emily Lofgren’s heart beats for authenticity. She craves true connection where we can be real about our struggles and find hope together. Emily became a Christian in college and since then has had a passion for writing in a way that helps others encounter life. Grab your free copy of her eBook Finding Hope Through the Fog.