Life is a blessing even when lived with chronic illness. Sandy shares how she is enjoying the time of reflection on what God has done.
“Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet My unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor My covenant of peace be removed,’ says the Lord who has compassion on you.” (Isaiah 54:10)
Twenty two years ago my husband and I were young, with two small children, and at last we were ready for the ministry. I knew life was a blessing. We both went to college, and my husband attended seminary for 5 years. Our children were 5 and 1 when we moved into our first parsonage. We had a lot on our plate, but we were excited to be in our first church. We worked a long time for this!
We did not have much money, so often we would go to a nearby riverfront park and picnic. We loved watching the boats and barges. There was a big playground and a walking path. Being a proud mom I took a lot of pictures. I felt like life was such a blessing!
There was one cloud over our exciting new life. For several years I had been having an array of mysterious symptoms. My doctor finally diagnosed the problem as fibromyalgia. It was a new chronic illness and not much was known about it. I was scared to think of what it would be like to raise a family, while in the ministry, if I got real sick.
Flash forward 22 years. Recently we moved back to the same area we began our ministry–this time as a semi-retired pastor family. One day we took a break and headed to the riverfront park to relax. Both of our children were with us, now they are adults. My husband and son walked up the steep step to the hill above the lock and dam. My daughter plopped down on the ground beside me. . . in my wheelchair. I held in my hand a photo of my daughter as a toddler sitting in the grass under a tree coloring a picture. The difference between that time and now hit me rather hard.
But since moving back to the area I thought of all of the blessings we have experienced over the years. Years of ministry in different churches, people we have met, many people walking closer to the Lord now. My “kids” are now 23 and 27; they grew up in the parsonage having seen first-hand many miracles that have occurred. Life is such a blessing! We have never had to do without, but often our needs have been met in extraordinary ways.
What an awesome God! Life is a blessing! We have quite a few years yet in the ministry. I doubt that my husband could ever really retire from ministry. I look forward to the rest of our ministry!
Prayer:God, there are moments when my immediate circumstances seem so big, but I know You have a plan for it all, as well as compassion and unfailing love. Thank you for reminding me that despite all the pain, life is a blessing. Amen.
About the Author:
Sandra Platt is a minister’s wife, mother of two great kids, and is owned by a spoiled beautiful cat. She loves to read, cross stitch, and spend time outdoors. Her prayer as she writes this is, “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in Your sight O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.” Psalm 19:14
Often it is easy to get down and see only your pain or illness and forget that life is a blessing. I encourage you to look back over your walk with God and recount the special times that He met your need, or touched your life. Will you share some of those blessings with us below?
Even if you are thinking, “Life is a blessing??” tune into the Out of Eden song, “You Brought the Sunshine.” God does hear you every time you pray . . . and He can put a smile on your face (so the song goes!)