Right now, I am in the end stages of this flu/cold thing that I have been battling this week. Let me tell you, it is such a relief to be feeling normal again. However, being sick has inspired me what to write about today.
Sickness in any form, whether minor like a cold or something as serious as cancer is not God’s plan for us. He may use it for good, yes, I have seen Him do this numerous of times in my own life, but His plan is to prosper us, not to harm us (Jeremiah 29:11). I wonder then, why is it so common that when sickness comes against our bodies, we embrace it as our own? In other words, adopt it, as though it were now ours.
I did not realize I was accepting sickness for most of my life. I would use words like “My Auto-Immune Disease” and “My Bronchitis”, as though it were, well, mine, something that was part of my life. Then, I would pray and pray for God to heal me of “My – Whatever” and I would end up feeling like I was begging Him to maybe, if possible, choose to heal me. Most of the time I felt more hopeless than hopeful after praying because I felt this sickness was somehow my fault. I would have thoughts along the lines of “Maybe I’m going through this because I have this desire to pray over other people so they would be healed, so I guess having sickness is a perquisite to do that.,” and “Maybe I did something wrong that I don’t know about and this is why I’m going through this.” and sometimes I even thought, “Maybe I have too much pride and God let me be sick to humble me.” Am I the only one here that had thoughts like these?
A few years ago, not sure exactly when or even how I came to know this, but I learned to start battling sickness, instead of accepting it. First, let me fill you in on some truths that I’ve discovered:
- Sickness in not a prerequisite for a healing ministry. His only requirement is that you have a willing heart. He can use the sickness you are facing for good (Romans 8:28), and give you a new perspective on struggles and battles people face, and yes, even create a new level of compassion in you. But God doesn’t NEED for you to be sick before He can use you greatly. If God’s spirit lives in you, you already walk in authority and have permission to pray healing for others. Here is some truth from Luke 9:1: “And he called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal”. (ESV)
- Sickness is not a punishment for sin, when you live under grace. When Jesus died on that cross, he endured the punishment for all of our sins. If this is true, then we are seen as white as snow before God, without a blemish. Why then would He inflict illness upon us if He doesn’t see us as sinners but as saints? Think of grace like an umbrella. As you live under His covering, you are protected from the punishment of sin. However, if you choose to step outside of His grace, then He can’t protect you from the rain. Let me share this verse with you from Romans 3:25-26: “For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past, for he was looking ahead and including them in what he would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for he himself is fair and just, and he declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus.” (NLT)
- Sickness is not a requirement for God to work in your life. He is so much bigger than that and can create a new heart in you, renew your thinking patterns, change your habits, fulfill the desires of your heart, all without you being sick. However, He is a good God, and if you, like me, have come across being sick, know that He did not make you sick to teach you a lesson, but rest assured, goodness will come from your season. I’ve noticed in my own life how God uses the times when I am sick to bring me closer to Him and I believe He does this with many of us. He will talk to you in new ways because you have slowed down and are able to be more attentive to His voice. He will draw you closer into His embrace as you find yourself more in need of His strength. He will teach you new things about His character and His love and remind you of the promises that you walk in daily as His daughter. The more you are filled with His love, the more your heart becomes transformed. This verse has helped me during so many different seasons in my life- Isaiah 41:10: “Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand” (NLT).
Sometimes there is that lingering question of “Why is this happening to me?” There is no absolute answer to that question, but let me tell you that no matter what you go through, you can trust in God to bring you through it. He is faithful and He is your Father. Never fear for He is there for you, even when you don’t feel Him or see Him (Hebrews 13:5). He is with you, holding your hand, stroking your hair, comforting you as you go through this process and all the while, healing you – most of the time, not just physically but emotionally too. God alone knows specifically why we are going through sickness and yet, God alone is the One who can give us peace as we go through it.
With these truths I have learned, it has been necessary to also change how I speak about sickness. No longer do I use phrases such as “I can’t do that because of My – Whatever” but rather “I can’t do that YET because I am currently battling this Whatever”. Your words are powerful Princesses and what you speak will shape how you see your life and affect how your life is shaped. To say you are battling “a” sickness, rather than “my” sickness is to say that there is something foreign in your body, it does not belong, and you are not letting it make itself a little cozy bed, but telling it that it needs to go. Pronto.
Princesses, you walk in authority because Jesus has given you power over the enemy. Sickness is not of God but from the enemy and I want to challenge you the next time you come across any illnesses to speak against it and speak God’s truths over yourself. Tell that sickness that it does not belong in your body, it has no authority, and it needs to leave in Jesus’ name. You are a child of God and His plan for you is to walk in perfect health and anything that does not agree with that truth can leave right now, out the door, and not return. Don’t ever let the enemy make you feel like you are a victim to sickness. Princesses, you are a victor, a champion, and an over-comer and with God, you can face any struggle with joy and peace knowing that the battle has already been won.
I will end with this verse from John 16:33:
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world (ESV)