Raise your hand if you ever feel like whining or complaining about being sick.
*waves hand wildly*
I’ve been dealing with a chronic illness (for which there is treatment but no cure) for about five years now. And lately I’ve had a whole laundry list of “nuisance” problems to deal with as well. And I haven’t felt the slightest bit like being cheerful in the midst of it all. Just ask my husband – I’ve complained. I’ve whined. I’ve felt sorry for myself.
Don’t we all do that? Whether you’re dealing with a long-term illness or something as simple as springtime allergies, isn’t it so easy to complain about it? To wonder why God is allowing you to feel so lousy? To be preoccupied and miserably discontent with how you’re feeling and become obsessed with trying to make it all better?
I’m not saying it’s wrong to try to feel better, to seek God’s healing or use medicines and common sense to fix simple problems. It’s not. But it needs to be done with a spirit of contentment and praise to God, and that’s what we so often ignore.
I was reading a few Psalms last night before heading to bed, and came across a verse that was so convicting in this area:
“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”
When I complain about feeling miserable, and wish God would change His will for my life, I am saying that He has not created me in a wonderful way. When I whine and pity my body’s condition, I am declaring that what He has made is not good. And yet God’s Word tells us clearly that God is good and all that He does (or creates) is good. His Word tells us clearly that He fashioned each one of us individually and according to His perfect and good and wonderful plan for our lives.
So even when my body is miserable, my spirit must remain cheerful and content. Because I am wonderfully made. Because everything God does is wonderful. And yes, because I know this to be true in my very soul. And therefore I must praise Him for it!
It doesn’t matter whether we feel like praising Him – it is commanded for us to do so. And you know what? Along the way, it will improve not only our spirits but our bodies as well. Because we cannot be anxious or worried if we are praising Him. We cannot be discouraged or depressed if we are praising Him. We cannot be discontent and self-pitying if we are praising Him.
So the next time you start wondering why you feel so tired or so sick all the time, remember: you are fearfully and wonderfully fashioned by a good God. And praise Him!