TODAY’S FORECAST: Peaceful
Whew! This has been a long week couple weeks for my family with that nasty flu. I’m reminded of that Cranberries song “Linger,” Do any of you remember it? “Do you have to let it linger? Do you have to, do you have to, do you have to let it linger?” 🙂 That’s how I’m feeling about the flu at this point! I had it for 6 days, then Meghan started it last Sunday and has been very sick with high fevers, a bad cough and just a general feeling of cruddiness. Today, she has had moments when the fever has finally broken and I see a little light behind those eyes. Then the headache starts in again or she consciously realizes she’s been stuck in the house for 6 days and she gets so frustrated. She just wants to feel better and wants to know when it’s going to get better. Don’t I know the feeling!
Yesterday, I had a CF clinic follow-up appointment. We (CF team and I) celebrated joyously when we learned that despite the flu that had plagued me the previous week, the antibiotics that had been treating my bacterial lung infections were working (at least to keep the infections in check for the moment) and that my lung functions were UP. That’s a big thing for a CF-er, especially an “old” CF-er like me, and typically makes for a really momentously good appointment day. Unfortunately, like many others with CF, there are other factors to be considered besides lung function.
I have CF-related arthritis that has been getting chronically worse the last few months. I present with mysterious rashes, severe and sometimes random arthritic pain that spreads to my surrounding muscles. I started flare-ups 14 years ago, the year Bob and I got married. That flare-up left me on steroids, pain meds and I couldn’t walk for a week. Luckily the flare-ups were few and far between for many years, maybe one every six months. Then just last year they started in again and became more frequent. First every couple of months, then every couple of weeks. Now, I can honestly say that not a day goes by that I don’t have severe joint pain somewhere in my body. Sometimes it consumes me and other days, other things with my health overshadow it and I just get through the pain. I’m on regular pain medications for it now, which I hate. Like our Miss Meghan with her flu, there are days I throw my hands up in frustration just wanting to feel better and wanting to know when that’s going to happen, if ever.
God hears that frustration, I know He does. I’m no expert, but I think He recognizes it for what it is, part of our humanness and seeks to comfort us through His words and encourages us to trust in His plan — that it is of goodness and not of wrath or vengeance. When I was having “The Talk” (for any of you who read that post) with my kids the other day, we were talking about why bad things happens. We went all the way back to the Garden of Eden to Adam and Eve. If you remember, Adam and Eve started out in perfectness, oneness with God. He desired that for them, longed for it, but then they made a bad choice and look where THAT got us! With free will, we continue to make bad choices and bad things happen. I know what you’re thinking, that’s great Jen, but that doesn’t explain disease and natural disasters, right? Yeah, I know, it still stumps me as well, but honestly, I wonder if it’s all part of the imbalance that was created at that moment.
The thing is, God filled His word with verses and verses and more verses about God’s plan for us, even in our times of frustration. I Googled “frustration with God” and this amazing page came up with 45 verses explicitly deal with times of frustration. Check it out for yourselves. http://www.openbible.info/topics/frustration
One of my favorites is Romans 8:18-21:
18 I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. 19 For the creation waits in eager expectation for the children of God to be revealed. 20 For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope 21 that[a] the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the freedom and glory of the children of God.
To me, that says, I know you’re frustrated, but wait until you see the blessings of heaven. It isn’t even worth voicing all these frustrations because if you stick with Me and believe in My love for you, the life of the future will make the frustrations of this life mere has-beens. What an incredible promise! So while we get frustrated because it’s part of our humanness, we need to keep our “eyes on the prize.” That is what I’ve been trying to do and I pray that God in His infinite wisdom will continue to help me with that goal. I know you have frustrations in your life too. Big or small they need to go to God, period. Hang in there, everyone, and when you’re getting to that point, try delving into His word. God Bless and Easy Breathing.