A crisis strikes.
Hope appears lost.
There is pain, discouragement, and feelings of uncertainty.
You’re not sure what to do.
Life with a chronic illness is full of ups and downs. At certain points, the ups don’t reach very high and the downs seem to go deeper than you ever imagined.
Things are hard. There’s no denying that.
But what happens next will determine the the character of your life.
When faced with a crisis, we have two choices – two options for how we may respond.
First, there’s the choice to fear. Fear leads to many feelings and actions, including anxiousness, attempts to control, bitterness, and anger.
Second, there’s the choice to trust God.
The world tells us that when we face hard things, we somehow aren’t getting what we deserve. We’re cheated out of the comfort and success we should be experiencing.
But individual comfort is not part of the Lord’s plan for living out the Christian life. Jesus told his disciples they needed to take up their crosses daily and follow Him (Luke 9:23). He told them to come and die; they were experiencing a loss of their old selves (giving up dreams, goals, comfort, family, etc.) in order to follow Christ in the way that is most glorifying to God.
As Christians, we must hold our dreams loosely. We can make plans and set the goals (those are good things when they are done prayerfully, in accordance with God’s will), but we can’t hold onto them too tightly. Anything we have can be taken from us except for the very thing we need most: Jesus. He promises us his presence, and that will always be enough.
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear.
(Psalm 46:1-2a, ESV)
While I never would have chosen to experience chronic illness, facing chronic illness gave me the opportunity to choose God.
Instead of choosing to rely on my own strength and abilities, I recognized the emptiness in my pursuit of success. I experienced the strength of the Lord as He comforted me during many painful days and sleepless nights.
As you face crises in this life, my prayer is that you would turn toward instead of away from God and you’d choose to trust instead of fear.
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