“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house” (Matthew 5:14-15).
I’ve always loved to sing and in going through some of my old music to teach my boys, I was started humming some of my favorites. I used to sing more with my old worship band, but I have less opportunity now. To shine seems to happen frequently with chronic illness: our usual opportunities to shine shrink.
To say learning to live with my fibromyalgia was hard is an understatement. It completely and utterly changed my plans since I am no longer physically able to do what I used to.
We all want to make a difference for God, but I when I got sick I felt like I was useless; like someone put a bowl over my lamp and my life wasn’t doing anything for God anymore.
Ironically, the fibro was something God meant for good. The pain stripped away all my self-importance since I am absolutely dependent on God and in my new-found humility, He is glorified. Any thing, little or big, that people give me credit for is all due to Him and I have been responding with “It’s not me; it’s all God!”
The depth of pain has taught me how He is responsible for anything good that I do; it is God who shines through me.
My illness made me realize that it isn’t just the big things that God wants, but my faithfulness in everything. When we choose to follow Him, especially in pain, He is glorified. Obedience when it is easy is cheap and I’d like to give God my best. He deserves no less.
Though my fibromyalgia was a huge loss for me, but I know it was a gain for God. He used it to move me right where He wanted me. There is no place that I would rather be.
Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, please help us to understand what it means to shine for You even when it isn’t how we thought we would and give us the strength to be faithful and obey in all things. We want to glorify You in our weakness and give You the credit so that others might know you too. Thank you so much for Your desire to use us where You’ve placed us. Amen.
About the author:
S.L. Payne lives in North Carolina with her husband, three biological sons and foster daughter. She has had fibromyalgia since she was a little girl, but it thankful for God’s faithfulness. She loves writing, photography and laughing with her family. Her blog is The Proverbs 31 Project at adventuresofaneverydaygirl.blogspot.com where she hopes she can encourage others.
How can we let our lights shine for Christ where He has placed us through our illness: are there any small ways that we have been overlooking?
I believe you will like this video, the official video for “Shine” with Christa Wells. When you feel like you are no longer shining or that you only add up to your mistakes or weaknesses, remember how we all shine differently, God gave us a wide range of colors that reflect Him. I think this will bless you and that you will be able to relate to the lyrics–and even smile at the ending of this video. Hugs. -Lisa