My great-grandfather was a preacher, and so is one of my brothers. I never truly wanted to be a preacher. Yet I love the Lord, and His Word, and my hope is that when my life is through they will say of me: “He was devoted to the Lord.”
The NIV Study Bible describes the Hebrew word “devotion” as meaning the most intimate degree of loyalty, having love and faithfulness between an individual and the Lord. I don’t think any greater thing could be said of us regarding our relationship with God.
So, how do you devote your life to God when living with illness? Many people who suffer chronic illnesses and disabilities beat themselves up because they don’t feel they are doing much for the Lord. But I wonder, what greater thing can one do to please the Lord than be devoted to Him? When one is a constant friend and companion and in continual fellowship with God, that is an incredible thing. I suspect that there are many people “doing things for God” that never take the time to truly fellowship with the Lord.
Not always–but oftentimes–those with afflictions are so slowed down by their situation that they can barely move from their beds or leave their chairs. They may find themselves with many empty hours on any given day.
I would suggest that those hours could be spent getting to know the Lord better, strengthening your relationship with Him, devoting yourself to God.
Perhaps you don’t believe that you could ever do anything for God because of your affliction. You may feel hopeless and useless when it comes to serving the Lord. I would suggest to you that you can take the time you have and spend it on God. Get to know Him better. Talk to Him (pray), read His word, devote yourself to becoming a friend of God.
Anyone can devote themselves to the Lord. All it takes is the desire to do so.
Don’t let your affliction convince you that you are of no use to God. The Lord highly values loyalty and our devotion to Him. You may not be able to get out of your sickbed, you may be unable to walk or leave your chair, you may find the simplest tasks that others take for granted impossible to accomplish, but not matter who you are or what your abilities add up to, you can fully devote yourself to the Lord.
Prayer: Dear Lord, we spend so much time on nonsense in this world, we complain about what we can’t do, help us instead to spend ourselves in devotion to You instead. Amen.
About the Author:
Karlton Douglas lives in Ohio with his lovely wife. His desire is to live a life devoted to God.
Do you feel helpless in your ability to serve God? Have you considered devoting yourself to Him? If someone asked you, “how do you devote your life to God when living with illness?” what would your response be?