Day 22: Encouraging Others

Often when my body crashes from doing too much and I need to rest, I’m tempted to just crawl into a hole. Not an actual pit, of course. But my desire is to disconnect from everyone and everything, to make the day just about me.

More and more frequently, however, I find God calling me out from my hiding place. Asking me, in the midst of my moments of pain, exhaustion and discouragement to reach out to others in need. And thanks to the internet, I can do that from my bed, while continuing to respond to my body’s need for physical rest.

This was precisely my challenge today. While I did completely step back from interaction with anyone for a good part of the day, allowing myself to fully relax, around dinnertime, I was reminded of a number of friends and acquaintances who were in difficult situations and could use some extra love and support.

sunset w:tree

And it’s so interesting how, when we set aside our own woes and choose to look beyond ourselves, we can be used by God to impact the lives of others even while we are hurting. I was touched to receive messages of “Thank you, I needed to hear that,” or “Hearing from you meant so much to me today”.  The very fact that I could be a messenger of hope, while struggling so deeply is such evidence of God’s amazing grace and the strength and wisdom He gives in the midst of my weakness.

Yes, I suffer from fibromyalgia, but I don’t need to allow that to define who I am. Because of the life I have received through Christ, I can choose to step outside of my own suffering and be an instrument in His hands.

And He, the master musician, plays a tune of healing through me.

And so it was with me, brothers and sisters.
When I came to you, I did not come
with eloquence or human wisdom
as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God.
For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you
except Jesus Christ and him crucified.

I came to you in weakness with great fear and trembling.
My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words,
but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power,

so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom,
but on God’s power.
1 Corinthians 2:1-5

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