These last few days have been hell… or so my frail body led me to believe. I dont remember a time when I was more sick, had a higher fever, or committed my soul over to the Lord more times. More than two days were spent in bed, curled up in the fetal position, shivering, fading in and out of consciousness, yet never crossing the brink into blissful ignorance. I did not sleep a wink; for two whole nights the seconds would drag on, after seemingly tossing and turning for hours I would look at the clock to see that only one minute had passed. It was an eternity of agony. In that time I even forgot how to swallow, due to the excruciating pain of my superfluously swollen glands. a few bottles of prescription/OTC medication later, I am still alive. Thank God.
I am sick way too often. (Though never like this.)
Some people like to point that out to me. They say I clearly am a worse sinner than the average joe (or apparently child too, since they are sick the most.) The theory is that I must have some crazy secret sins tucked away in the closet. I must be offending God more than the healthy people and He is punishing me out of wrath.
So is He?
Does God punish people for sin with sickness?
Alot of people would say “yes He does,” and quickly bring up anecdotal evidence of some “sinner” that “got what he deserved.” This is, of course, never examined against the millions of little Hitlers in full health while countless numbers of children die from sickness.
Lord have mercy on us for our silly beliefs.
Sickness is a result of sin, that is true. All disease, pain, afflictions, sorrows, and such entered the world due to sin. Everything bad around us is the result of sin. Your sin, my sin, our sin, their sin, Adams sin. Yet that does not translate into punishment, especially when Gods children are concerned. Pain and sickness is the opposite of punishment!
On a global level, it is the merciful plea of a righteous God, it is the wake up call to a world dying in sin. A call that says: repent, believe, and be saved!
On a personal level, it is the refinement of an individual. Its is Gods loving hand working in His child for the good of His child.
Some suffer more, some less. I cannot explain why, only God can know. I dare not presume that means there is more refinement needed in that person, because only One can know that. He permits it for His plans, to test some like Job, to draw others unto Himself; maybe sometimes to teach us or lovingly chastise us. We are His sheep and He our Shepherd.
I am not saying that I am better or worse, that I am an undeserving Job, or that I have sin in my life. Truth be told its probably a little of everything.
I don’t understand exactly why God inflicted this upon me and maybe I never will. I’m not really sure what I need to do or learn, expect to have patience and trust. I repent and commit myself into His hand.
I know one day, when we shall see and know as we ought, I will fall at His pierced feet and thank Him for these last few days.
And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.