Having a chronic illness is a bit like walking around with a reason to keep from trusting God. It’s a bit like having this constant enemy within you whispering, “I’m here and I’m never going away, no matter what you ever do.” There are good days and there are bad days, but on the bad days, it’s far too easy to think, “God, why me? Why this kind of fight? Why this kind of illness or pain?” It’s a bit like having one of those things atheists constantly try to refer to when trying to disprove God. A constant, “Well if God is real, or if God is good and loving, then why are you chronically ill? Why would He let that happen to you?”
But what God’s begun to speak into my not quite proper heart lately is the beautiful truth that our battles are not strictly for us. Yes, our battles will shape us into who we are meant to be for Him. But the fact of the matter is that our battles are placed in our lives so that God can work through them. He might use your illness to bring others to Him. He might use your fight to teach even the most steadfast of Christians something knew about Him. The simple truth, however, is that He is going to use your battle for the good of His kingdom.
You might be sitting here like me, living with an illness, chronic or not, that mankind can never heal. But I’m here to tell you today that God is going to take your story, illness and all, and turn it into a beautiful testimony. Your pain and suffering is not because you did anything wrong. It’s not because God doesn’t love you. It’s not to harm you or destroy you. It’s to make you stronger; it’s to display God’s work in your life so that others can come to know Christ. It’s to help those around you as your story inspires and moves others. You may never get healing here on Earth, but God’s planning on using your story for the good of His kingdom, and I think that’s the truly beautiful part of it all.