“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28).
God uses our pain in funny, surprising ways. When my fibromyalgia flared up terribly in high school, my plans had to change.
I had wanted to be a missionary and was going to major in music and english in order to get into some closed, developing countries. But I was too sick to be able to live in a place where medical care is sketchy at best. I was devastated.
God had better plans. He used my pain in ways that I never expected. He asked my husband and me to become foster parents. It makes no sense. I’m sick, we already have kids, we have a small house. I wasn’t even 30 yet. But He asked, and we couldn’t tell God no.
I thought my pain was going to be a liability. God meant it as an asset. When I work with birth parents, I’m able to be open about how God changed my life and how I’m broken too. We relate on the basis of our pain. We’re equals so they listen about how God is my hero.
I used to think that because I was sick, I was no good. Now, I get to serve God because I’m sick.
What I’m doing is hard and I’m completely dependent on Him. He gives me the strength– it’s the only explanation. All of our situations are different, but I know God doesn’t waste pain. No matter what He has placed in our lives, He intends to use it for good.
We tend to think we have to be perfect people for God to use us, but He’s always preferred the broken ones. However little we have, He can do big things with it as long as we trust His plan. They are better than ours.
Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, please help us to be dependent on You and trust in whatever plan You have for us. Please help remind us that even the little things matter and we don’t have to do big things for You to make something big out of it. Help us to connect with others in our brokenness and to share our story of how You are our hero. 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 is thankful for God’s faithfulness. God has used to it help her see Him in everything; the three boys have supplied the humor! She loves writing, photography and laughing with her family. She just launched her brand new website uncommongrace.net where she hopes she can encourage others to live in grace. You can follow her on Twitter @saralynnpayne.
How has your illness changed your plans? Even though we don’t always get to see the results, has your illness allowed you to touch others?
When I heard this song, “Get Up” by the group Building 429 the lyrics resonated with me. It talks about how we just need to keep getting up and allowing God to have whatever we can offer Him. And He will do something with it. We don’t need to be famous, have good health, or know all our scriptures by heart, but we do need to be willing to follow Christ where He leads us–and that is a place where God uses our brokenness. Enjoy! -Lisa