Right now I have some mental clarity! That doesn’t come often for me, so I’m taking full advantage of the moment and writing you all an update. For those who don’t know, I’ve been sick for about a year and a half now with Lyme disease. I don’t want to write about the symptoms or what the past year and a half has been like. Maybe that’s for another time. Today I want to write about something else.
Lately, because of treatment and a fairly long downturn, I have been isolated a little more than usual. I haven’t been able to go to my wonderful church, or see my friends. I sit here in my cave of light blue, with a mirror that was poorly placed right in front of my bed so I can see myself every time I cry (I should really move that thing), and I rarely ever emerge-except on those days that my pain gets below a certain number out of 10, then I take full advantage and get out of the house. But this past week I’ve met some people that have truly inspired me. And even though “met” means over Facebook, it feels just like we sat over coffee and chatted. They are radiant human beings that haven’t let Lyme disease stop them one bit. I’ll be the first to admit, I’m not one of those people. Aside from the obvious physical symptoms, I’ve been profoundly affected by all this disease can do to your mind, all it can do your spirit and your faith. Plus I walk on concrete as much as possible in order to avoid ticks now. As I call it, I’ve “gone concrete.” I hear re-exposure makes Lyme even more intense the second time around. But these people aren’t like me. Those things aren’t on their mind and they amaze me. They’re still hiking and walking trails, the same trails that likely infected them. They’re still reading their Bible as if the thought of God’s abandonment in their pain has never crossed their mind. Their courage baffles me. There have been moments in this journey, and I predict there will be again, when I didn’t care about learning lessons anymore and I just wanted to be healthy again. Being in pain in those moments eclipses what is happening in the bigger picture. But right now in this moment of clarity, I care about the lesson. I long so much to have the eyes these girls have that are able to see things mine don‘t yet have the ability to see. I long to not be easily moved or affected. I hope I can be as beautiful as these girls are who tough the pain and have become more creative and inspirational and faithful to Jesus through their trials. I’m not good at it yet. But I want to be more than anything. And Jesus knows that’s my heart’s goal and desire. However I don’t desire for this disease to last long enough for me to get good at it!
Anyway, this is a verse that I’ve been thinking about lately. I don’t say that to give the impression I’ve been in the Word a lot through this because I haven’t. I struggle to pick up my Bible and read promises that feel so much like they’ve been broken in the midst of my illness. But deep down I know they haven’t been. I know I’ll look back and realize they were more than fulfilled someday. But this one verse has brought me a lot of comfort recently. It’s Jeremiah 22:16, “He pled the cause of the afflicted and the needy; then it was well. Is that not what it means to know Me?”