Chronic illness feels unfair.
“Who made man’s mouth?
Who makes him deaf, or mute? Who makes him blind?”
I struggle to accept it.
“How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide Your face from me?”
My understanding of God strains under the load of unyielding weakness.
“Why are you sleeping, O Lord?”
Have genetic flaws contributed to my suffering?
“You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I am fearfully and wonderfully made.”
Did environmental factors contribute to weakening me?
“All the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be.”
Is it my fault because of choices I’ve made?
“Do not be discouraged, for The Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Why must I be so hobbled?
“For Your arrows have sunk into me, and Your hand has come down on me.”
I long to pray from a heart full of joy, but the truth is I’m weary of being ill.
“There was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me.”
I fear it may never end.
“Cast your burden on the Lord, and He will sustain you.”
Praying for relief doesn’t seem to do any good.
“I pleaded with the Lord that it should be removed from me.”
Does God hear? Does He care?
“But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you,” for My power is made perfect in weakness.”
Is this punishment? Do I deserve this because I’ve been bad?
“Neither this man nor his parents sinned, but this is to display the glory of God.”
I feel useless.
“Be still and know that I am God.”
What if I can’t handle the future?
“My heart and my flesh may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”
Lord, I need help.
Teach me the cross. Help me die again to self, and the expectation of good health.
Protect me from anger, self-pity, envy, and bitterness.
In my weariness, be my endurance.
In my anxiety, be my peace.
In my suffering, be my fourth man in the fire.
Walk with me, Lord Jesus.
With you I can do all things.
Apart from You, I can do nothing.
Teach me to be content whether abounding or in need.
Whether healthy or sick, strong or weak.
Give me eyes to see what You see,
to love what You love,
to hate what You hate.
Take my life – take this weakness –and make it count somehow for Your glory.
Thank you for your promises. Please give me strength to believe them.
Thank you for your faithfulness. Please help me to trust Your heart.
Thank you for the blood of my Savior.
Thank you, Jesus, for taking my sin as Your own
and giving me Your perfect holiness as my own.
Please help me be content with weaknesses and hardships, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
For the sake of Christ, help me be content.
All glory and praise to You, Lord Jesus.
“For God alone my soul waits in silence;
from Him comes my salvation.
He only is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.”
I’m sharing this personal struggle with God because God uses overheard prayers to build up His children (1 Corinthians 14:16-17), filling the Bible with written prayers for us to “overhear,” including the entire book of Psalms.
The point isn’t to highlight my personal suffering, (which is not special or unique). I hope that by listening in on my honest struggles with God, you may take heart that in yours, you are not alone. “Through many trials we must enter the kingdom of God.” (Acts 14:22).
I’m trusting the Almighty Father, that as we pour out our hearts to Him, both privately and in the hearing of our fellow travelers, we will find rest for our souls, though the earth give way, and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.
“In this world you will have trouble, but take heart, I have overcome the world.”