Thankful through Trials

People are often taken aback when I say that I am thankful for my illness.  There are many reasons that I feel that my MS diagnosis has been a blessing for me and my family.  I would have probably never slowed down and lived for the moment if not for MS.  I would not have been forced to deal with the deep-seated emotional issues I had spent my whole life holding in.  I would not have learned to let go of the small stuff and be (a tad) less controlling.

In the grand scheme of things our time on this earth is not about us.  It is about how we live our lives for God’s glory.  I spent a week or two really upset last month when I found out I also have systemic lupus. “It’s not fair” and “why me” came out of my mouth and my heart.  I was feeling very sorry for myself And then I remembered:  my trials and issues are really insignificant.  When you are able to step out of your pity party and look at the world around you, it is easy to see that I don’t have it so bad.  I have learned about the plight of chronically ill people in third world countries- hello?  How can I complain when they have no access to healthcare at all?  There are orphans in Eastern Europe that are institutionalized for life (just put in cribs at the age of four) simply because they have Down Syndrome.  Babies that are suffocated at birth because of deformities.

I think of how much this type of atrocity must pain our Lord.  How He must yearn for us to get out of our own little self absorbed box and find ways to help those that are less fortunate and more oppressed than we could ever imagine being.

What would the world be like if we all took an interest in other people’s problems rather than our own?  If we focused on loving everyone we come in contact with instead of trying to leverage situations for our own benefit?

I have been just as guilty as the rest of allowing myself to wallow in my trials.  But, the Lord is speaking to my heart so loudly lately, particularly through a passage in Isaiah 58:6-12

Is this not the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break over every yoke?  Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter-when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?  Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard.  Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say:  Here am I.

If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness and your night will become like the noonday.

The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sunscorched land and will strengthen your frame.  You will be like a well watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail.

Now, I don’t know about you but I am interested in feeling like a well watered garden and am thankful the Lord provides the guidelines for doing so.

And, in the midst of a season of thankfulness I pray that none of us lose sight of the true reason for the season!

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Comments

  1. Beautiful, Melissa. You are such an encouragement and blessing to me! I am so thankful for the technology that brought you into my life. Happy Thanksgiving!!

  2. Happy Thanksgiving!

  3. Amazing as always 🙂

  4. This is a great post and very good reminder to us all why we should be thankful!

  5. I agree with Jen, a great reminder to be thankful and not take the little things for granted in life.
    Best wishes to you!

  6. Thank you very much for posting this. I found it very inspiring. Sometimes we all need to be reminded of the good in life..and focusing on others can also help you. Although that being said..I think we all deserve a “why me” moment every once in a while…
    Hugs!

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