Years ago I gave myself permission to not set resolutions. And if I do have goals for the new year, I start thinking about them in November, and plan to begin working on them in late January. Just as people around me are feeling disheartened about breaking their resolutions, I am beginning mine. I’ve learned to have a scheduled grace time in January to give my body time to recover from December.
Living with chronic illness can make us feel like Job does in the scripture above. All “success” may have been driven from us. We each define success in different ways. It may be a job or providing for our family, but it may also be volunteering for ministry, or creating memories for our children or grandchildren.
With the impact illness has our lives, especially during the chaotic holidays and extreme weather conditions that affect our bodies, we realize we do not have the power to help ourselves. Only through surrendering our needs, our hopes, and yes, our goals for the new year, over to God can we help ourselves.
The world says January is a time of change. Every commercial, magazine cover, or talk show is talking about exercising or losing weight. Last week one talk show host admitted with horror to her colleagues that she weighed about (gasp!) 130. Her obvious embarrassment made me frustrated. It would take me many months to ever be 130 and I’d be thrilled with it.
But those of us who suffer have a special place in God’s heart. Psalm 34:18 says, “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” Rather than always seeking to accomplish God’s action-packed assignment for us, it is sometimes to “…wait in hope for the Lord.” (Psalm 33:20)
Prayer: Lord, help us know as Psalm 46:5 states: “God will help [me] at break of day.” I’m taking it one day at a time, seeking help and seeking You.
About the Author:
Lisa Copen is the founder of Rest Ministries which she began a few years after being diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis in 1993. She is the author of “Beyond Casseroles: 505 Ways to Encourage a Chronically Ill Friend,” available at http://beyondcasseroles.com and 100% of the proceeds support Rest Ministries.