“And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.” (Colossians 1:10-12)
Chronic illness is not a sprint–it’s a long haul. Hence the “chronic.” Sometimes that seems so hard to face. The fact that we can look at the future knowing that we may not improve, can bring those feelings of depression as we struggle not to be overwhelmed.
As Christians, we can look forward to the time when there will be no more crying, no more pain–but there are days when that seems so far from where we now find ourselves.
As I read Paul’s words above, I see the reminder that as we grow in our knowledge of God and what He wants us to do, we are strengthened by His power, so we have endurance and patience to face the life ahead of us.
That endurance and patience are things that I seem to need so much with chronic illness. It is a daily fight that we must endure and we have to learn patience to cope with it.
But “joyfully giving thanks to the Father”–is that something that we are able to do for whatever “chronic” issues we face? Sometimes it’s hard to be thankful for what makes our lives so hard, or maybe harder than the life we see someone else lead.
Paul also says that by our endurance and patience, we qualify to share in the inheritance of the saints.
I wonder if the “joyfully giving thanks to the Father” will be when we see how the challenges of our lives have caused us to depend on God’s grace and strength. Because we have learned we cannot do the journey alone–we will receive the reward He has in store for us. At that time, I think we will be grateful for all that drew us closer to God.
Prayer: Father, I pray that You will encourage and strengthen all who read this. Help us to trust You, depend on You, and even give thanks for the trials that bring us closer to You. Amen.
About the Author:
Fiona Burrows lives in Melbourne, Australia. She is thankful for the difference God makes in her life, and the lessons He is teaching her, as she lives with chronic back pain. She enjoys finding time for reading, writing, and photography, and to travel when she is able. You can contact her in the Sunroom.
You can now read this on your Kindle. Find out more at http://TodaysDevotionOnKindle.com
When you are feeling overwhelmed with the daily-ness of chronic illness, what is the first thing you do to improve your outlook? Share your creative ideas that some of us may not have thought of that we can implement too!