We who preach and write, do so in a manner different from which the Scriptures have been written. We write while we make progress. We learn something new every day. We speak as we still knock for understanding...If anyone criticizes me when I have said what is right, he does me an injustice. But I would be more angry with the one who praises me and takes what I have written for Gospel truth than I would be with the one who criticizes me unfairly. -Augustine

The Day of Adversity, Part 2

The Day of Adversity, Part 2

Yesterday’s Lamplighter moment discussed various adversities that we often face–as well as the way that God gives grace to the humble during these times. A reader wrote to me with some follow up questions, and I wanted to share her question and my answers below.

Our reader wrote: “Dear Mark, I am experiencing many of the same physical symptoms that you listed in your daily moment. For years I have felt ill and I continue to worsen, leaving me with little strength to be the mother and wife I need to be. I am often so tired, I only wish to be in bed. I feel like a slave to the washer machine and stove and when my husband comes home, I only want to lie down and rest. What did you do to overcome these illnesses?”

Here is my reply: “Dear Sister, for me it was a serious dose of humility and brokenness. When I relinquished control of my life to Christ and my family, I gave them back their own identity and their own self-worth. I became a servant rather than the ruler of their lives–and I began to heal. Whenever I go back to my controlling nature, those symptoms begin to rise again but I quickly return to the state of servant and so far, all is well with my health. In fact, I am feeling better as a 56 year old than I did when I was 25.

Illness comes for a variety of reasons, but often I believe there is a sin issue that lies beneath the surface. However, not all illness is because of sin. Jesus said that the man’s blindness was not because of his sin but for the glory of God. But in James we learn to call the elders to anoint with oil so that our sins might be forgiven. So there are times when there is a connection between our health and sin.

I also think that many Christians suffer with chronic illnesses because they have never sought help from those wiser than themselves. My wife and I saw a biblical counselor for 6 1/2 years; I believe this also was a major factor in my healing. Even 20 years later, I still visit with a Christian counselor when I feel stuck in a logjam with my wife or one of my kids or someone at work. I see the wisdom of God’s people as a gift to the church. When we expose ourselves to light we can be truly helped. I have said this many times–and I’m often a slow learner of my own counsel–when we entrust ourselves with God and others, we find help and healing and restoration.

Lastly, one of the most important factors in my complete healing was Psalm 119. “It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I might learn your statutes.” Or, “Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep your word.” Psalm 119 is filled with healing truths. I hope this helps…it truly has helped me.

Published in: on December 1, 2011 at 1:50 pm  Leave a Comment