"Why art thou cast down,
O my soul?
and why art thou
disquieted in me?
hope thou in God:
for I shall yet
for the help
of his countenance."
Have you ever had a day or two or a week or two or even longer when you just wanted to give up? To say, "enough already”? To throw in the towel? To crawl in a hole? To run far away and hibernate?
Here's a secret, if I could ever just run away and hibernate, I'd run straight to Hawaii! I've always wanted to go to Hawaii. Of course, I’d take my fabulous hubby with me as I ran away!
Just thought you needed to know that special secret about me!
Well, I'm about to be brutally honest with you.
The past few weeks, I have certainly wanted to give up, throw in the towel, hibernate and most definitely run FAR away!
Run away from what?
Run FAR away from my life-altering, never-ending, ever-changing chronic illness.
I am talking about running away from a chronic illness. But maybe you are trying to escape from a very difficult marriage situation with no reconciliation in sight. Or maybe you are stuck in a job that is "going no where fast". Or a financial situation where you are so far in debt that you can't see around, above or beneath all of the bills that keep coming in. Or any number of other situations.
As I thought of running away, this is how I pictured myself...
Hibernating like a bear in the wintertime from the heart-wrenching loneliness that haunts me at times like a horrible, frightening nightmare.
Crouching in a corner wiping the tears from my eyes with "the towel that I threw in", as I think of all the fun stuff I'm missing out on.
Hiding away from the doctor appointments, medications, adverse effects from medications and the unending symptoms that hound me and follow me around like little puppies who jump and nip at my feet and ankles all day long!
These past few weeks have been EXTREMELY difficult.
Not just physically, but emotionally, mentally and yes, even spiritually.
The days have been more difficult than usual because I caught the "sinus/bronchitis bug" that was going around and I just cannot get rid of it. For me that means being sick on top of already being sick with a chronic illness, which of course is "doubly difficult".
In the midst of taking my third antibiotic and a steroid pack, I had an allergic reaction to the steroids which were meant to help me! The "ironic" part was that my face looked like I had been out in the sun WAY too long and got a horrendous sunburn! Kind of like traveling to Hawaii, you know my "get away" place and soaking up the sun's rays, but never leaving my home!
And who says the Lord doesn't have a sense of humor??!!
Okay, I think I really need to stop and clarify something rather important here.
I wasn't just saying that I wanted to go on a vacation or on a fun getaway when I was saying that I wanted to run away. What I was REALLY saying was that I was totally and completely fed up with my situation of dealing with a chronic illness for the past thirteen years which I have no control over, but controls me.
I wanted things to change for the better. MUCH better. I wanted the situation to change NOW! I really felt like I could NOT endure one more day, one more hour, one more minute.
I was weak, weary and worn
I was frazzled, frustrated and feeling like a failure
I told you I was going to be brutally honest! And VERY transparent!
So day after day. Sometimes several times a day. As I was conversing with the Lord and telling Him how I wanted to just “run away”, He kept bringing to my mind the following verses.
“From that time many of his disciples went back, and walked no more with him. Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.”
It wasn’t like the Lord brought these verses to my mind once or twice, it was EVERY time I mentioned or even thought the words, “I just want to run away”.
I knew it wasn't a coincidence, but I just couldn't "get it together"!
Well after about six, seven, eight, maybe nine times!
Yes, call me a very slow learner!!
I got it!!
I finally put them together, and YES, one plus one still equals two!!
Even though I was NOT telling the Lord that I was leaving Him or turning my back on Him, like He asked His twelve disciples in the above-mentioned verses. What I was saying when I would say, “I want to run away”, WAS, “Lord, I don’t want YOUR will for my life anymore. I’m really very tired of YOUR will for me, and I would much rather have things MY way."
Okay, Barb, just STOP and BREATH and let this REALLY sink in!
WHAT?? Turn my back on the Lord? NEVER! But if I'm NOT wanting His will for my life, then that's exactly what I'm doing. If I think I know better than He does, then I am making myself the Lord of my life instead of Him and I have literally "went back, and walked no more with him " just like the verse says!
When it finally sunk in, I was completely overwhelmed. I quickly poured out my heart to the Lord and confessed my sin and said the same exact words of Peter, "Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.”
And He not only has the words of eternal life, but the Lord has words for every single day of my life. Every single MOMENT of my life!
Then I did some major "soul-searching" and realized that even on those VERY difficult days, I KNOW in my heart that the Lord has me right where He wants me to be at this time in my life, which DOES include a chronic illness, at least for now.
How do I know?
- Because He NEVER EVER makes mistakes!
- "For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;"
II Corinthians 4:17
- This will NOT last forever! Oh, it may be with me the rest of my life in this world, but once I leave this world, it will be gone FOREVER! I have a HOPE of healing, if not in this life, MOST DEFINITELY in the one to come in Heaven ... PRAISE GOD!!
- “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”
- Because He is the Lord and He knows what is best for me, even if I can't see it. This is where I MUST practice walking by faith and not by sight!
Those are all good reasons. Great reasons. Godly reasons.
would I want
to run away?
Well now that I wrote this post, I'm asking myself that very same question!
The next time I am tempted to run away, I think that I will run straight to Jesus because I KNOW that He is waiting with arms WIDE open.
"God is too wise
to be mistaken
God is too good
to be unkind
So when you
When you don't
see His plan
When you can't
trace His hand
Trust His Heart"
The one thing that is very frustrating to my on my huge "flare up" days is that I can't keep my concentration. I can't pray or read God's Word like I so desire to. So for many days lately, this song has been set on repeat and has been playing over and over reminding me that God IS a good, good Father, and I'm loved by Him!
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May God Bless You,