Saturday, January 3, 2009

New Year; Same Problems

Hope deferred makes the heart sick, But desire fulfilled is a tree of life.--Proverbs 13:12.

How can one cope with chronic illnesses and still have faith in God and not lose hope? Here are a few ideas to ponder for this new year.

1. No matter how anger or disgusted you may get with God, do not stop praying, reading the Bible, attending biblical worship (if you can get there), or having fellowship with serious Christians. You have have seasons of disengagement or disgust with God--as I do--but don't let them last very long. If you cannot attend religious services, some churches will send ministers to pray and celebrate communion with you at your home.

2. Be open to, but not naive about, new medical possibilities. Yes, that thing you never new about that might really help you may be out there or something new may have just come out. On other hand, who knows? And, of course, beware of the snake oil.

3. Try to be patient with people to just do not get chronic illness. Explain your situation and give them some literature to read. Pray they will have eyes to see and a heart to feel your situation and that of so many others.

4. Never forget that the sufferings of this world are not to be compared to the glory to be revealed in the Kingdom of God at the sound of the Last Trumpet. Look ahead; it is not escapism, but realism. The resurrection of Jesus assures Christians of that (1 Corinthians 15).

5. Be on the look out for mature Christians who have faith to pray for healing. Don't rush into this, but consider praying with these folks. Some have this special gift and have pray in ways that you and those close to you cannot.

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