Today, out of nowhere, my vision started to get so splotchy that when I looked in the mirror I couldn’t even tell it was me! Though I’ve made progress with the POTS and Lyme Disease, the damage caused to my eyesight from the brain injury has gotten worse. I’m seriously almost blind right now as I write this! When my vision acted up today I thought, “Forget this, I’m not letting it hold me back!! I’m writing an article!!!
I wish I handled every obstacle in life with that attitude, but honestly I don’t. God was showing me today how I’ve let relationships hold me back, beat me up emotionally and affect the way that I see myself. I must recognize that those are lies and that I need to leave those things in the past!! I need to “Get up'” move forward, and thank God that I’ve had Him through all the hardships.
I see how the Lord has given me a “fighter attitude” these past 5 years while being bedridden. I have looked to God to help me use these obstacles to grow closer to Him. I have constantly asked Him to bring good out of the trials (Which He was already doing before I asked)! I decided to choose to see what God was doing in my trials, and to push through the hardship no matter how much pain I faced. I have literally fought to live and not die. Yet I realize sometimes, other trials in life have consumed my thoughts and emotions. I have at times given into self-pity. I don’t understand why certain people have treated me poorly, or worse – unjustly hurt the people I love. I still don’t understand.
Sometimes, people wonder why I didn’t question “why?” the chronic illness was happening to me. I was only 20 years old when my world started falling apart with that car crash. I didn’t question God or life. I knew I lived in a fallen, imperfect world where disease and hardships happen. I knew I had a God who died on the cross so that He could free us from the hardships of this fallen world and give us a life with Him in Heaven (when this life ends.) Maybe I didn’t question the disease or car crash, but I did question the damaged relationships in my life. Why were they playing out like this??? I suppose it was because people have free will. We get to choose how to treat each other.
There’s a story in the Bible of Jesus raising a little girl from the dead.. The little girl’s father had found Jesus and asked Him to come to their house cause his daughter was sick. The father knew Jesus could help! When Jesus arrived, there were people all around sobbing. The little girl had died…. Or so they thought. When Jesus saw the girl He said she wasn’t dead she was only sleeping. Those who were around mocked Jesus, they didn’t believe Him. So He told them to leave. Once they left, “He took her by the hand and said to her “Talitha koum !”(which means”Little girl, I say to you, get up!).” (Mark 5:41) To everyone’s amazement she was now healthy and standing.
I think that this story can be used as a metaphor in our lives. Sometimes there is a hardship (like the little girl’s sickness). Her father ran to Jesus, just like we can run to Jesus when something is dying in our own lives. Sometimes what’s dying is our self- esteem, we take rejection as a personal testimony to who we are. Our trial could be anything, losing our job, losing a loved one, losing our house, sickness, money problems, relationship problems etc. These hardships are not because the universe or God is punishing us. It’s just a hard world we live in where bad things happen.
The people who were sobbing about the little girl’s death can be compared to the thoughts we have that are sobbing, or bringing negative thinking to us. When Jesus said the little girl was not dead, He saw something that no one else could see. Just like when our lives are falling apart God sees that our lives aren’t over or permanently ruined…. He sees hope. There is good in our lives and He can bring beauty out of our hardships. Jesus told the little girl to “arise” (Get up!). I think God asks us to “Get up” (with His help) but often we curl up in a ball and fall into self-pity.
I realized today that I need to get out of my thoughts of self–pity. I need to leave behind the unanswered questions of “why” and instead I need to “ Get up.” I’m not saying there isn’t a time to grieve, cause grief is healthy. But there comes a time when we put our grief aside and look forward. We listen to the Lord gently whispering “Your life isn’t over, you’re not dead. Get up, arise.” Maybe what we are beating ourselves up about is mistakes we have made. It’s good to realize we’ve made mistakes, to repent to God, and apologize to those we’ve hurt. But we can’t beat ourselves up forever. We’ve repented to God and now it’s time to let the past be the past and let God guide our steps for the future.
Get up. We don’t want to let our negative thoughts about ourselves, about life, about God, about others destroy us. And those thoughts will destroy us and slowly bring death to our spirits. We can’t do it on our own, we need to ask God for help. ‘Jesus help. I can’t do it without you.” This was my prayer this morning, this is my prayer about every day! 🙂 (Sometimes several times a minute LOL!!). I need Him, I need His thoughts and guidance. His thoughts bring us life.
What does He say about us??? Look to the Bible to see the way God sees you. He loves you, He died for you, He forgives you, He has a plan for you. What about the sickness that is plaguing your family?? God will be with you. He won’t leave you or forsake you. He Will still use you.
I may not be able to change my vision, (my eyesight.) But I’m not going to fall into the thinking of fear, anxiety, and self pity. I’m gonna get up out of that thinking and still enjoy my day. Today is still “the day that the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it.”(Psalm 118:24)
What about the strained relationships… well it’s time to no longer grieve, or take the rejection, or let it change the way I see myself. It’s time to let God help me to “get up” out of that thinking and focus on the good relationships I have. It’s time to see the way God sees me.
I may not be able to change the way these people see me or treat me, but I can change the way I see myself. It’s time not to beat myself up for things I haven’t done… or for things I have done. It’s time to accept God’s forgiveness and to forgive myself.
God is good, loving, and pure. He will be with us through every obstacle. And there is nothing in life, no situation, no mistake we’ve made that will change how much our Heavenly Father loves us. 🙂