Living Life As A Zebra!

Living Life As A Zebra!

Okay to start things off for today, I have a very simple question for you.

If you could become any animal which one would you choose?

I know ones right off the top of my head which I definitely would have NO desire to become!

A slimy, slithering, scary snake!

A vampire bat! Just the thought of that gives me the creeps!

A warthog! That is one of the most ugliest animals God ever created!

Okay, so what are some of the animals I would choose to become?

A brave, bold, roaring lion!

A service dog which would aid a blind person, someone with a disability or a handicap.

A tiger! They have the most beautiful, vibrant colored skins. An interesting fact I found on tigers, "Every tiger in the world is unique. No two tigers have the same pattern of stripes."
That's our AWESOME God!

What about a zebra?

I was told recently by my doctor that I AM a zebra!

Let me explain!

I recently had a doctor's appointment. However, they hired a new Physician's Assistant (PA) since I last visited this particular practice.   

I knew I would be seeing the new PA, so of course my mind was in a bit of a tizzy asking myself questions like,

"Will she be nice?"

"Will she understand my chronic illness?"

"Will she take the time to get to know me or will I just be another number to her?"

I've seen enough doctors over the years to know all doctors are NOT the same.

Some are very understanding and take time to really get to know you and they LISTEN.

But some just brush you aside and act like you're taking up their precious time especially when you're a difficult case like myself!

I actually had a doctor in the past tell me that I was cutting into his lunch hour!


Photo by Ana Sofia Guerreirinho

So I had no idea what to expect two weeks ago when the door to the exam room swung open.

But much to my relief, she was a fabulous doctor! 

As I was getting to know her, I told her many of my doctors in the past have labeled me as an anomaly.

The definition of anomaly,

"A deviation from the common rule, type, arrangement, or form. An odd, peculiar, or strange condition, situation, quality.

Synonyms include: oddity, peculiarity, abnormality, irregularity, inconsistency, quirk, rarity

Not a very flattering description, is it?   

As soon as I mentioned being labeled as an anomaly, she immediately responded and told me that I was like a zebra!

I had NO earthly idea what she meant!

She went on to explain that in medical school she was taught most patients will be normal like horses.

A horse will be a healthy patient who may get sick every now and again, but they respond well to treatment and recover fully. They live a "normal" healthy life.

But every now and again, you'll get a patient who won't fit the mold. No matter what you do or try, they won't respond to any medications or treatments. They just don't get better. You literally run out of treatment options. They are known as zebras!


I REALLY prefer being called a zebra MUCH better than being referred to as an anomaly!  

So here's the $100,000 question!

Why do some people get to live their lives as a strong, vibrant, healthy horse, while others must live their lives as a zebra coping with life-altering, painful symptoms on a daily, hourly, moment by moment basis?

My answer? I don't know!

Wait, I DO have an answer to that question.

Because it's God's choice. He is God, and He can do whatever He chooses to do!

So if I had MY choice would I choose to be a horse or a zebra?

Well, I think the answer to that question is quite obvious!

Of course I would choose to be a horse! Who in their right mind would ever choose to be ill?

But it's NOT my choice and since God, in His sovereignty, has chosen for me to be a zebra, then it's up to me to be the very best zebra I possibly can be for the Lord and for others.

Granted, I cannot do the things a strong, vibrant, healthy horse can do such as, teach a Sunday School Class, hold a ladies' Bible study in my home, head up the nursery (or even work in the nursery!), bake goodies for shut-ins, sing in the choir, make a meal for someone recovering from surgery, be the church secretary (which I worked as right before I became ill)

So as a zebra what CAN I do for the Lord and for others?

I can pray for all those who are doing the work of the horses or pray for other zebras, even if it's a super bad day and I must do my praying in my bed or sitting on my couch in my jammies with my feet propped up!

I can send cards to those who are doing the work of the horses or send cards to other zebras.

I can send a text message of encouragement to those who are doing the work of the horses or send encouraging text messages to other zebras.

And guess what?

In the eyes of the Lord, the things which the horses do and the things which the zebras do have EXACTLY the same meaning as long as they are being done with an attitude of desiring to bring honor and glory to the Lord!

So if you're a stallion standing behind a pulpit teaching a Bible lesson to a room packed to overflowing with people or a zebra laying in bed alone in the dark beseeching the Lord on behalf of others, the Lord DOES take notice and counts both labors of service of equal importance!

A final word to any zebra who may be reading this.

Is it always as easy to live the life of a zebra as I may have portrayed it to be in this post?


Days of utter darkness

Days of unending tears

Days of horrendous, unrelenting pain

Days of heart wrenching loneliness

Days when all you long for is to be a strong, vibrant, healthy horse.

Oh, zebra, hang on, better days ARE coming.

For if you know Christ as your Saviour, this world and all its pain and suffering, is but a stepping stone to a MUCH BETTER home in Heaven.

When the days are long and lonely and the nights are filled with pain and fear, always remember to hold fast to your First Love because He is definitely holding fast to you.










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May God Bless You,



  • Zebra4Jesus

    March 15, 2017 at 9:59 am Reply

    Ok! So I just love that post! In this world of horses there is nothing quite like another zebra putting life in words, encouraging you where you are. It's refreshing, inspiring and invigorating! Thank you so much! Your fellow zebra

  • Barb

    March 15, 2017 at 12:27 pm Reply

    Oh WOW, you just blessed my socks off! Thank you so very much for YOUR words of encouragement to me! The words mean even more when they are coming from another zebra!
    God Bless You ♡♡♡♡

  • Linda

    March 15, 2017 at 9:32 pm Reply

    Have to admit, Barb, the heading of this post had me intrigued! Your words are a wonderful encouragement to other "zebras". To those of us who aren't, you have reminded us that there are many "zebras"- and each each one of them is unique, valuable and definitely not "less" than anyone else, and certainly able to be used by God.
    I don't know what sort of animal I'd like to described as! To have a lions boldness would be great (I don't!). To have the eyes of an eagle and discern things clearly would be good; to be ever faithful and ever loving as my daughters dog is great too. Our God has created amazing animals, each with their own uniqueness - I suspect there is a lesson we can learn from every one of them!
    Barb, your corner of the web is such a welcome respite - thank you for being here! Love you and send hugs and prayers over to you.❤

  • Barb

    March 17, 2017 at 3:04 pm Reply

    Linda, my faithful "Barnabas"! Oh, how I always look forward with great anticipation to your comments. Your words are such a huge encouragement to me. Yes, I can certainly understand how the title of the post had you intrigued! My doctor had me intrigued when she first called me a zebra!
    I absolutely LOVED you sharing what animals you might choose to be and why! Thank you my dear, sweet friend for once again blessing me with the JOY of your friendship ♡♡♡
    Love you and sending you buckets filled with hugs across the seas just for you!!!

  • Jennie Verrilli

    April 5, 2017 at 3:24 pm Reply

    Thank you! For this wonderful essay. I too am a Zebra. I have written you before, I have Severe IBS. I have tried everything known to man, but nothing has worked for me. I still believe in God. I love getting your e-mails.

    God Bless you!

    Jennie V.

    • Barb

      April 5, 2017 at 4:09 pm Reply

      Oh Jennie, yes of course I remember you♡♡♡♡
      Oh how I know it feels when the doctors no longer have an answers. Thank the Lord that He always has the answers and even if He chooses to not reveal them to us, He is always with us providing us with His peace.
      God bless you, Jennie
      I will be praying for you ♡♡♡♡

  • Jennie Verrilli

    April 5, 2017 at 3:26 pm Reply

    I am sorry. There is 3 of these posts. I don't know how to erase them.

    • Barb

      April 5, 2017 at 4:03 pm Reply

      It's okay Jennie, I'll delete the others

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