When We Receive Criticism About Our Illness or Affliction

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)

Christians with afflictions are often familiar with the book of Second Corinthians because the Apostle Paul mentions his struggles with afflictions. It is strange that I never questioned the reason he made mention of his afflictions. Recently, while reading the ESV Study Bible about Second Corinthians, I discovered that the reason the Apostle Paul made mention of his afflictions was because his authority was being questioned because he was so afflicted.

We have all come across this. Either we have questioned our own standing with God because of affliction, or others have advertently or inadvertently questioned whether we had done something, or were doing something to displease God and cause our affliction.

The Apostle Paul was making a defense of his standing with God and also teaching the Corinthians that they had it all wrong–affliction does not mean we are outside of God’s will, instead, affliction is an opportunity for God to show His grace, strength, and power through us.

Perhaps it is human nature that causes us to look for the source of pain and suffering. If we step on a tack we immediately look for the source of pain so that we can remove it. Likewise with illness and affliction we want to know what caused it. Did we do something wrong? Is God angry with us? Can we stop some action, or begin some new action that will end our suffering?

Sometimes a headache is just a headache. Sometimes a disease or affliction is just a disease or affliction. Perhaps the only real meaning we can find for our afflictions is by taking that pain and suffering and allowing God’s comfort to reach through us and out to others who are also suffering pain and affliction.

When you are tempted to blame yourself for your illness, or when others are blaming you for your illness, remember the Apostle Paul. He was afflicted to the point that fellow Christians were questioning his status and relationship with God. Yet Paul is proof that God takes us in our afflictions and delivers His own power and glory and goodness through our afflictions. We are vessels of His grace, not victims of His wrath.

Prayer: Dear Lord, when we are tempted to doubt ourselves and to doubt You because of our afflictions, remind us that You use the weak and afflicted people to show Your grace and power. Amen.

About the Author:
Karlton Douglas lives in Ohio with his lovely wife. It is his prayer that God will work His grace and power through his afflictions.

You can now read this on your Kindle. Find out more at http://TodaysDevotionOnKindle.com

You can now read this on your Kindle. Find out more at http://TodaysDevotionOnKindle.com

Have you doubted your standing with God because of affliction? Have others questioned your faith because of your affliction?