Do you struggle with a hidden illness or a variety of medical issues that the doctors can’t seem to find a solution for? I know for me, this has been a battle I have fought and faced for many years. And I know many who have struggled or are struggling with various things. Some have struggled with mysterious, disconnected symptoms and varying degrees of pain or sickness for years, and others have had things develop over a short period of time.
It is definitely disheartening to be fighting a battle that has no name. To go to bed every night hoping by some miracle the pain will be gone in the morning. And then to wake up realizing the pain is still there or somehow worse than the night before and knowing you have been called to step out once again into the battle lines and fight.Fight and carry on with life like it’s normal, going to work, taking your kids to school–or taking care of them at home when they’re younger–cleaning the house, and doing all the duties you are called and expected to do. You call out to God asking Him to take this illness from you or to please show the doctors what is wrong with you for once so you can finally have some answers or a direction to go so you can maybe have a chance at being better and feeling good for the first time in your life, or for the first time in a long time. You cry out and wonder “Why me,God? Why do I have to struggle and fight so hard just to get through each day?” You fall down in defeat wondering how you can carry on. and the thought of learning to live with this for the rest of your life overwhelms you and you feel like you just can’t do this anymore.
Then there are days when you literally can’t carry on. You are calling into work yet again because your body is in too much pain or too tired or reacting poorly to whatever new treatment the doctors are trying. You’re housebound and sometimes bed bound and feel depressed because you can’t join in the life that is moving on around you. You feel like a failure because you can’t provide for your family or take care of them the way you want or feel you need to. And your loved ones and closest friends struggle to find their own strength to help you carry on and keep pushing through this.
It is easy to feel defeated or just too beat to keep fighting in times like these. I know from personal experience you grow tired of always having to explain what’s going on in your life or trying to help people understand what you are going through. You call upon God and His strength and know that sometimes all you can do is trust in Him to get you through this day. Even just the next five minutes. You keep trying to put on a good face and keep your testimony strong for Christ’s sake.
It is hard to keep fighting such a difficult battle, especially when the battle runs deeper than anyone can see or seems completely invisible to the world around us. It’s easy to find the strength of God in this sometimes, because you do feel Him there and you know that the only way you got through this day was because of Him. But, I’ll be honest, there are plenty of crappy days when I don’t feel like praising God for this or feel like He has His hand and goodness in it. But, God has got this, just like He’s got everything else going on in my life. He knows exactly what is going on in my life, even when the doctors and endless medical tests declare you a mystery to them and can offer you no help or answers.
Two of my favorite passages in the Bible are 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 and Psalm 139. They have been a source of strength and encouragement in my life many times over in different circumstances in my life. When I’m feeling weak, I’m reminded that God’s strength is so much greater than mine. The verses in 2 Corinthians are verses I cling to when I feel weak and tired and I pray often that it is God’s strength that can be seen in me when I’m too weak to carry on on my own. The second passage has been especially poignant for me this week as I have struggled to accept the prognosis of my recent doctors appointments, mainly because it reminds me of the intricate and intimate hand God had in creating me.
God formed your inward parts and saw you when you when you were being formed in a secret place. He knit you together in your mother’s womb and knew each day that He had planned for you before you were even a thought in your parent’s minds. He knew the journey you would go on and the battles you would face. And He knew you could handle it and that you would make it through. That’s why He called you into this special service.
You are God’s special warrior. You have been crafted with a special strength that others will never experience. You have been called to fight a battle that will deepen your soul and your reliance on God in ways others will never be able to. Don’t worry about the days you fall short or take a lapse in your fervent strength. Those days do and will come but God is beside you every single moment and will wait for you to reach out to Him when you’re ready to keep fighting on.
You may fight and some days may fail, but the strength you put on in the warpaint on your face is the strength of a God who will always prevail. You are stronger than you can imagine and you are the special warrior of God. Let Him show the world how beautiful and how strong you are. And on days you can’t keep fighting, let yourself find rest in the strength of God and know He will carry you until you are ready to stand again.