Who Would I Be Today Had I Not Lived with Chronic Illness?

timeIf you could go back in time and become you–minus illness–would you? Julie shares.

“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead” (Philippians 3:13).

I recently drove through the town where I attended high school. As I drove through, several buildings brought back memories of events I enjoyed. I remembered bowling my first game ever and getting a 30.
The restaurant on the main street brought back memories of waitressing. The swimming pool reminded me of fun times with friends. But most of all, I remember being healthy during that time.

I longed to go back.

But holding onto the past is impossible. Think about people with Alzheimer disease. Oftentimes, they do live in the past, and it is very sad for those around them.

I have to ask, was I a better person in the past? Was I a stronger Christian then, closer to my Savior?

When I think of all I have been through, it has been painful at times, but it has shaped me into someone stronger. It has given me a deeper relationship with God. I also have a new sensitivity for others who are suffering. When I was young, I rarely even noticed anyone but myself.

My soul is much healthier than it was in those years. The body is still deteriorating, but the soul is getting stronger. Living in the past would only keep me from what God has planned for me each and every new day. Learn from each new moment He has for you and leave the past where God put it . . . in the past!

Prayer: Dear Lord God, It is hard not to look back and long to be healthy again, but please help me to see all the good that You have achieved in my life over the years, and how it has shaped me to be a better person. Give me hope and glad anticipation for each new day. Amen.

About the author:
Julie Buckley was diagnosed with mixed connective tissue disease in 1995 (scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and polymyositis) along with fibromyalgia. She lives in the midwest with her husband and has a grown son. She also has a blog site called “Healthy Souls,” which encourages Christians to grow stronger through their physical weakness, http://jabuckle.wordpress.com/

Can you name things that are better in your life now than they were in the past?

This is Sidewalk Prophets singing “Keep Making Me.” The video is unique and the group’s original creation (be patience in the first 30 seconds), but the lyrics are wonderful. It is so hard to allow God to make us broken so He can fix us. But this is what brings us the most joy. And this is what makes us who we are today. Hope the song blesses you. -Lisa

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