moved: Carrying the Cross

Discussion in 'Spirituality/Worship' started by sparrowshell, Jul 17, 2006.

  1. sparrowshell

    sparrowshell New Member

    Carrying the Cross 07/16/06 11:09 PM

    Hi everyone.

    Sorry, this post isn't too much of an encouragement, but I guess I have more of a question to ask those of you who have CFS and wonder what your thoughts might be.

    Just chatting in another CFS forum, I mentioned that I also was angry, after having a time of being and thinking I was pretty well again, and now I have crashed and gone back to what I was before Easter. I'm struggling with how to truly accept sickness (5 1/2 years), and wonder if this is something I may have to deal with for the rest of my life. So, I had a small chat with my priest about it yesterday.

    From a Christian perspective, I know illness is a burden / cross we have to carry. In saying that to him, he said, "Yes, it is a cross. How else can you look at it? But what is a cross? The cross is sacred. A cross is treasure. So this is your treasure." What he said made me cry (not bad crying, if you know what I mean ... crying in the sense that it touched my heart, touched a nerve). It's hard to see your own suffering as some sort of treasure. But I guess in Christ's eyes it is ... what we suffer makes us better people.

    But what I struggle with is how do you carry this cross? Actually, my struggle is more so with the service side of things. You see, before I got sick, I wanted to serve Christ, in whatever capacity that was: missionary, evangelist, preacher's wife, artist ... whatever ... but then I got sick and that was the end of that. I didn't want to serve Him because it "earns me salvation". I wanted, and still do desire to serve Him because I love Him with my whole heart, and there's nothing that I desire to do more. Now I struggle with trying to see how being ill is possibly of any service to God. But how is suffering of any value, in comparison to someone who might be sharing the Gospel overseas? Or someone who is preaching? Or even singing in the choir? I feel like my being sick is doing nothing for God's kingdom. I mean I can't even clean the bl..dy Church without having a crash!!!!!

    I totally don't understand. Does anyone have any light in this regards out there?


    Hi there! 07/17/06 12:30 AM

    I am a Christian as well, I have only been really close to God for 3 years now. And helped so many family members and especially my two young boys. Then the illness set in. At first they thought I had lymphoma. And I was preparing for chemo. I had handed it all over to Christ. I didn't want cancer but gave it up to Him.
    Thank God it wasn't. Then dx of fibro and Hashi's (thyroid). Well I haven't been the same. For me it has only been ten months and more accurately 3 months of a total lifestyle change.
    I have not taken my kids to church consistently for months now. Our church is wonderful and the kids are really happy there. They make it fun. We leave there feeling wonderful. But I am too sick half the time.
    So I started wondering how on earth is me being sick helping to serve God? How can I share the Good News with my oikos if I can't go myself?
    But we just have to keep asking Jesus what he wants us to do? He knows our pain. It must be for a reason. What I don't know. But I completely understand your questions. If we can't serve our church and help people the way we did before what can we do?
    One thing I thought is maybe being an example to my oikos and I mean being happy and at peace even in the pain. Thanking God each day for the day. Maybe one day people will see how strong we are and how strong we remained in our faith. And it will encourage others to be strong even in dire times.
    I am sorry this is long. It is a subject I battle daily with myself. I love my faith. And it questions our purpose, doesn't it? I do not have an answer for you or me. I just tell everyone I am fine and God gave me today. And hope this is enough even when I can't pull myself to church as often as I long to.
    Remember He knows our hearts. We are not alone.
    Blessed be His name!!!!!!!!


    I understand 07/17/06 05:55 AM

    I've bargained and asked to be whole so that I can serve others also...But, guess what this illness has brought me closer to my God because of it I talk to Him daily..
    W/O the disease I might not feel that closeness.

    Also, anyone I happen to meet like checkers at Walgreen's or the grocery all have some burden or mental or physical hurt. The other day I meet a woman who had a hand brace on her hand we began to talk about her painful arthritis.
    So I got her name, wrote it down and now I pray for her...


    I am not offended 07/17/06 06:14 AM

    You do not speak of any specific religion.

    And I do know were your coming from.

    Foe Every Day A New Dawn Will Come.



    WE ALL HAVE A CROSS TO CARRY 07/17/06 06:41 AM


    I have always had strong faith in god and it has only gotten stronger since i have become ill. I believe that most of us won't know the answer as to why we had to live our life in severe constant pain until we meet our maker in heaven, then we will find out why and we will understand why we were choosen to be in constant pain.

    I truely believe there is a reason for everything, just keep your faith and when your having a day where you just don't think you can make it just ask the lord to give you the strength to make it threw the day. I have had to ask god to give me strength to make it threw the day many times, for along time now, i have been unable to be strong for myself so when i'm at my witts end i also think of my son, oh i love being a mother and god and my son give me the strength i need to go on. Sometimes when you can no longer be strong for yourself you have to think of someone or something you love and be strong for that reason, my son keeps me strong.

    I never question why me or why do i have this pain everyday, just keep strong faith and know there is a reason that only the lord knows why and we will know when the time comes. Take Care and i really wish you better health and lots and lots of happiness!

    Just know your not alone sweetie! When your having an extra bad day come to this site and post all your worries because there sure are alot of good loving and very understanding people that will be here for you in your time of need. TAMMY.


    To be honest... 07/17/06 07:09 AM

    While I am usually VERY uncomfortable with the subject of religion on this board,

    IF the national dialogue were on the type of intellectual level in which you pose your well-thought out, heartfelt questions, I could NEVER be offended.

    I hope you get the answers you are seeking, as you are obviously highly evolved spiritually, and a seeker, as opposed to a know-it-all.



    meaning of suffering 07/17/06 07:21 AM

    Your post and the questions you ask remind me of a book i read. The meaning of lie- Frankl. It is about the authors experiences in a concentration camp and the theories he evolved from those experiences, a therapy called logotherapy. Although i do not totally agree with everything in his book it helped me think through a lot of the issues you raised about how to deal with suffering and see meaning in it from a perspective very different to my own. It might be worth exploring.


    worship forum dead 07/17/06 07:54 AM

    The worship board is all but dead. I've wanted to post stuff over there, but no one's around.

    Also, there have been threads discussing Eastern religion that trouble me so I just don't read them.

    As far as sickness and being a Christian goes, a couple of things that gives me great comfort are comments by Puritan pastor Matthew Henry who wrote an entire commentary on the Bible.

    In discussing Job 14, he says that 'nothing comes to pass by chance,' and that 'disease is His servant.'

    Dante wrote 'In His will is our peace.'

    I find these truths very comforting as our society places so much emphasis on being a super woman. I feel like I'm expected to be CEO of a Fortune 500 company, be a gourmet cook, perfect housekeeper, be involved in umpteen charitable causes, having an exciting social life and be the perfect wife. Obviously, I'm none of these, but that doesn't mean I'm a failure since I'm a Christian.


  2. caffey

    caffey New Member

    I don't have cfs so I don't understand what you are going through. I usually post on the arthritis board. Suffering is such a deep and complex subject.
    1. The Bible talks about comforting others with the comfort that we have received. That means the strength that you get from God you can share it with someone else or how God has helped you to cope in the dark times.
    2.The main way that we serve God is by showing His love to others. For example by encouraging people on the cfs board that you know how they are suffering. The problem is that these days people think that if they aren't doing big flashy things for God they aren't serving Him. That isn't true. He asks that we be faithful where we are at. If you were meant to be a missionary somewhere now God would have made you well enough to go. Just be loving, encouraging and faithful everyday and hang onto your dreams. Just rest and trust God and let someone else clean the church for now. Your day will come when you can do it again. Hope that helps you.
  3. sparrowshell

    sparrowshell New Member

    Thank you everyone for your thoughts and words of encouragement. They have helped me heaps ... I know I'll get through this, but you can't help but have "those days" when you're sick. Yes, it's true, with the blessings God gives to us, we can be a blessing to others ... so thank you all for being a blessing to me :)
  4. windblade

    windblade Active Member

    I don't have too much concentration or brain power tonight, but was so glad to see that you came here, and wanted to say WELCOME.

    For me, being angry with God, and learning to share that anger with him, because he can deal with it, and I think that he wants me to bring all of myself to him, has been a healthy practice for me.

    I struggle with all the things that you do, also. But I truly believe that God wants me to know him more - to be more entranced and in love with him. And that he is IN the painful sufferings that I live through, promising to work in them for good.

    I think of the widow's mite also when the things that I do are so small, but for me I am giving my all. Jesus loved that about the woman, and said she was giving the most.

    I'm so glad that you brought your questions and thoughts here! I hope we will be having ongoing conversations, sharing struggles and insights!


  5. jinlee

    jinlee Member

    I understand what you are saying. There is a book out by Joni Earickson Tada that is very encouraging in this situation. She was in her teens when she was in a diving accident and was paralyzed. She went through all the questions, grief, disbelief, anger at God, etc.,. that we all have gone through at one time or another in response to an illness or other catastrophe.

    I think you would be very encouraged by her words.

    Hope you find peace in your search for purpose, as God has a purpose for sure, it is just hard to see it from our side of heaven. I guess that is where faith comes in.
    [This Message was Edited on 08/06/2006]