A Lot of People

It seems that a lot of Christian people are going through real hardships these days. Hardships associated with physical ailments of one type or another. There are so many Christian brothers and sisters that come to mind. Debilitating ailments, not being able to walk or move about. And then there are those who are totally incapacitated and have been for years, who depend on others to take care of their basic needs. Mothers who can’t take care of their children, wives who can’t do their part with family responsibilities. Husbands and fathers who can’t do anything because of pain. People undergoing treatment for cancer, which in most cases is almost as debilitating as the disease itself. These are Christian brothers and sisters that I’m talking about. And I don’t have a clue why.

I can lift them up in prayer and I do. But I still don’t understand why these things happen. A while ago I had a lot of pain in my leg from a pinched sciatic nerve and I could barely walk for a while. It eventually went completely away and it was such a relief to be able to walk again without pain. Pain and I aren’t friends. I don’t deal well with pain. If I encounter pain it seems to take over everything. I’ve had my share of ailments over the years, as I recall, kidney stones were really a hoot. Sometimes with pain, all you can do is barely hang on.

I don’t understand why some brothers and sisters in the Lord have to endure these things. Undoubtedly God knows but as of this moment in time, He hasn’t taken me into His confidence. And then there are mental disabilities, which can cover a wide spectrum and can be equally debilitating. Once again, I do not understand why.

I think of Nabeel Qureshi who passed away a couple of years ago with stomach cancer and Ravi Zacharias who just recently has been diagnosed with a rare type of cancer. Obviously God is sovereign. Obvious we live in a fallen world and are susceptible to various diseases and ailments. And just to make it even more interesting, we have the coronavirus pandemic currently touching all corners of the world, reeking havoc with Christian believers who are expressing everything from complete denial that it even exists to Armageddon is literally at the door. I have no doubt that the “end times” prophecies as outlined in Revelation and Daniel will in fact unfold, but there is a sequence of events in the prophetic timeline and I am finding it indeed difficult not to scream out, “For goodness sake people, get a grip!”. But I digress.

I can’t help but think that my expectations about having continual good health is somehow unrealistic. Seemingly bad things happen to seemingly good people and seemingly good things happen to seemingly bad people. I used the word “seemingly” because in most cases I have no idea what God’s “big picture” is when it comes to His sovereign will pertaining to divine healing, sickness and disease. There is an excellent and highly detailed study on this here if you are interested. But what I do know is this:

Romans 8:28 NASB

“And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.”

All things is pretty inclusive and that would indicate to me that “all things” includes physical and mental ailments. God knows what He is doing and He is in control. Am I guaranteed continual good health? I don’t think so. Am I guaranteed that no matter what ailment I my encounter, God will work it together for good, if I love God and am called according to His purpose? Yes, I believe that is true.

Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!

22 comments

  1. Personally, I always find it helpful to look at another’s pain.
    Just this morning, I looked at a very young girl’s face who’d been diagnosed with brain cancer. A kiwi sized tumor in her little head. That in itself was a reminder of how my personal pains are miniscule. She carried a brighter than life smile, despite her reality.
    I’m beginning to realize, and, this again, had crossed my mind on my way to work this morning, that the older I get the more I become heavily weighted down by the experiences (opposed to the little weight of experience the young girl carries). I see the lines in my face from the frown and the lines between the eyes from anger. I feel the stress that I carry in my shoulders and neck. The occasional chest tightness from anxiety. The past is there, indubitably.
    I just keep the faith, deal with the inevitable pain of life, and know that everything dies. But, we as Christians, keep the hope of a better life to come. Blessings, brother.

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  2. Good morning Bruce. These things you wrote about today are what I was thinking about after reading David’s response to yesterday’s blog entry. His reasoning for not believing the story of the pool of Bethesda. I found it odd that his reasoning was that it wasn’t logical for God to send and angel to heal, and to heal only one person.
    Of all the things God choses to do, I found that one pretty tame.
    Wether that story is true or not, is really irrelevant, but I can assure you, what the story represents , the power and compassion of Jesus Christ, is not irrelevant.
    PS. I’m totally with you on your take of the Corona virus.
    Have a great weekend Brother.

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      • Yes I did read it. I also find David to be top notch, but find his reasoning on Gods’ sovereignty odd in his example of sending an angel and only healing 1 person.
        As you well know Bruce, I don’t believe the bible is inerrant or infallible as it was written and compiled by men. So I am not surprised or dismayed by errors that may be contained within the pages of any said bible.
        But that’s not my point here.
        My point is that God has done far more illogical things (as far as the flesh is concerned) than send an angel to stir up water to only heal 1 person.
        Not sure if you’re understanding what I’m saying, or perhaps I’m not explaining myself well.

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      • Hi Stephen, I think David was addressing the basic unfairness of the first come, first serve issue of the angel stirring the waters, which did strike me as a bit odd or out of place too. I do understand your point although examples of who has the quickest reaction gets the healing don’t come immediately to mind. Personally I was glad that verse 5:4 was not in the earliest Greek manuscripts and is deemed to be a later addition by most scholars because it got rid of a sentence that seemed oddly out of sync, at least, for me. And yes Stephen, I’m aware of your stance on the reliability of the New Testament. I’m pretty sure we agreed to disagree on that one. Short story is I wasn’t aware of the questioning of that verse and now I am and for me that is a plus. You have yourself a great and blessed weekend!

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    • Well that was quite a post Linda Lee! I can see the connection with regard to my post. Witnessing something like that would be disturbing to say the least. And of course, there’s the unanswered questions, to which I still have no answer. The Apostle Paul stated that now we know in part but one day we shall know as we are fully known. I’m thinking that maybe it’s because being here, where we are, we are not able to comprehend it all but once we are in the presence of God we will be able to comprehend. I really look forward to that day. Blessings Linda Lee.

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  3. All these sickness have made me sober about my own health that good health is for a season. Like you I don’t know why some saints get so sick and I know there’s nothing different than I or them. On another note I never thought when I first started blogging how much prayers I will pray for people’s health. I remember your pinched nerve

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  4. “I used the word “seemingly” because in most cases I have no idea what God’s “big picture” is when it comes to His sovereign will pertaining to divine healing, sickness and disease.” That’s really the answer, isn’t it, Bruce? He’s God, we aren’t. (As He pointed out to Job. :/ )

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    • Funny you should mention that Ann because as I was writing it the thought came to my mind, “… which explains why God is God and I am not…) but I didn’t put it in. Short story is you’re absolutely right. Thanks Ann and blessings to you and yours!

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