Over the last few months my goal has been to be more vulnerable and real with you. I don't know any better way to do that than by sharing my journey over the last 9 year of living daily with an illness. In the next few blog posts I and a few others will be sharing stories of how God has taken something like illness and used it for His glory. I pray that these next few weeks you find hope, encouragement, peace, and a reason to keep fighting through the things shared here.
At the age of 10 when you ask God to use you in big ways you think that He will send you to a small village in Africa or ask you to lead someone in your school to Christ. But God's plans for me to be used was unlike those of a village in Africa or leading someone to Christ on the playground! He knew that the things I was about to encounter wouldn't be the same as if He sent me to Africa. Nope, instead at the age of 9 I began what would be a LONG journey of not actually being truly diagnosed with a disease but rather being labeled under a broad umbrella of having a Connective Tissue Disease and Rheumatoid Arthritis.
This lable was life changing it meant that I now had to learn how my body functioned and when it was telling me to rest or push through. I missed school for countless doctors appointments that never had true answers. One time I had to give 28 vials of blood that turned out to be negative for all the things the doctor was testing for. And while I am thankful they all came back negative just once I wanted one of them to say "Postive for _____" just so that I could tell people who asked.
My symptoms consist of rashes that come whenever they want, muscle fatigue, a weakened immune system, lots of joint pain, headaches, and much more. For a looong time I was taking medication that had lots of side effects and would change the symptoms for a few months. But then my body built up a tolerance to the medication. So I had to whine myself off them and change to another.
When I beginning this journey I didn't reliaze how life changing it would someday be. How hard it would be on days I didn't feel good, days when I'd have to miss things that kids should never have to miss because they sick in bed. Things that I would love to attend but couldn't because I hurts so bad. I love to run but running hurt my body a lot! Yet their were time right in my bed where I would read my Bible and worship Jesus through the pain. Despite the pain. Because I didn't know what else to do. Those where the times that were most rewarding times. God blessed me with people that would send me book, after book, after book so that I could enjoy something while I stayed in bed. I am SO beyond thankful for those people and you know how you are! But above that I am thankful for the way these last 9 years have deepend my faith and need for Jesus.
You see their are days where I could wake up and possibly not be able to walk, or be covered head to toe in a rash but you see my God is bigger than this battle. Yes at times am I frustrated, discouraged, and flat mad at my circumstance for sure. But let me be the first to say all I did was ask God to use me for His glory and if this is his perfect and pleasing will then use me over and over. Had I not gotten sick I would have NEVER started writing, or digging into scripture, or even thinking to use social media as my platform but here I am. I know that through this label of illness God is changing me but I pray more that he changes the people around me! I pray that when people see me they see Jesus!
So my question to you is will you let God use you in the way that He wants to use you? Because when you do it a life changing thing. And trust me He will. Don't be scared he probably won't give you some life changing sickness like He did me. But you might be the one He sends to Africa. He might send you to love the unloved. You never know until you say "God use me for your glory" and then listen and I promise you will hear from Him. Then in the good and the hard moments worship him because it's in those moments that you will experience him in new ways and hear new things from and about him.
Please leave a comment and share a way God has used you or if you have questions for me feel free to leave them here or head over to my Instagram @Simplylovingjesus and DM me or send me an email. I LOVE hearing and answering your questions and comments ❤
Thanks for being here!
If you find this post encouraging, inspiring, and empowering would you please leave a comment! I read and reply to every comment! It also helps me create content that you need and love! -Makyna