God is Faithful
If we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot disown himself. 2 Timothy 2:13 NIV
In the course of illness and reading to uplift myself from the frustrations of chronic illness, I came across the idea that God is faithful. Just because you can’t feel/hear/see God, doesn’t mean He’s gone. He’s still present even though we might turn our backs on Him.
This concept was life-changing for me.
Chronic illness is the most mind-bending experience I’ve had. Put a pebble in your shoe and go for a walk. At first, it’s no big deal, but eventually, that pebble will wear at you. The chronic pain I’ve dealt with for years is exhausting at best and soul crushing at worst.
When you have a chronic illness, there comes a point where life must carry on no matter how bad you feel. Life marches on, the world keeps spinning, certain things need to be done. There are no sick days or excuses from certain facets of life.
Kids make carrying on with life even more intense. Toddlers don’t care how poorly you slept or if your pain is especially intense today. Grade schoolers must get to school every day. Once they’re at school, life will be easier, but getting them there is harder than it should be.
I don’t care how big or exciting your goal is, overwhelming pain will short-circuit any plans you might have.
Pain is draining. Extended pain, day after day, is mind-numbingly exhausting. A person can put up with a huge amount of pain, to a point. Everyone has a wall, and your wall can be pushed further and further away with practice. But once you reach the wall, it’s hard to carry on.
Scripture has been important to me in dealing with chronic pain. I’ve reached my wall more times than I’d like to admit. In fact, most mornings I reach my wall driving the kids to school. Getting up and moving in the morning is intensely painful, and then add driving, and I’m spent.
However, stopping is not an option. In fact, some amount of regular activity is helpful. Keeping a normal, active routing helps tremendously. Eating a gluten-free, plant-based diet and exercising keeps me out of bed. Everyone is different, so different diets work for different people. But sticking to whole foods and mostly fresh is usually ideal.
In addition to these physical routines, creating spiritual and mental routines is vital to keeping sane. Whatever your faith walk, feeding your soul is vital to feeling grounded.
I’ll leave you with this thought.
God is still there. God is faithful. Just because you can’t feel His presence doesn’t mean He’s left. The sun doesn’t stop shining just because you turn away from it, neither does Christ’s love for us stop shining. Remove your distractions, create life-giving habits, meditate on His word, turn yourself to the Son.