Contentment Is a Two-Sided Coin…

I remember like it was yesterday where I was when I first heard the news of this sobering day twelve years ago.  Living in the Maryland-D.C corridor, we were near the front lines.  Yet our sorrow was tempered with joy as we delighted in the birth of a precious new baby boy in our family that morning only a few hours after the first attack on the Twin Towers. We had a measure of peace, a bit of contentment in a world gone awry.

I am reminded that even in long-term chronic illness, we can see the ebbs and flows of pain and joy, judgement and mercy, intolerable suffering, and the breath of heaven that gives meaning to our very existence.  My sister-in-law’s breast cancer has gone into remission again. My husband has had a far better than normal summer.  A year ago he was totally miserable. We were pleading with the Lord for relief for both loved ones.

Contentment does not mean that you live in a blissful state of denial about the trials you are currently experiencing. I talked to a friend a week ago whose husband has been wheelchair bound for years.  She shared some of the dearest gems of Christian truth with a small group of ladies she calls family.  Yet when I asked how her husband was doing? Ummm, not so good. But , we don’t need to talk about that today.

In the journey of life with the cross of a chronically ill spouse, we are all in different hard places. Still, we can learn with Paul to be content. He knew how to be abased and to abound. If we treasure the mercies and joys God allows in our loves, we will realize again that the sufferings are only temporary. There will be new mercies to bless God for. Gloriously,  the pain will finally end in a bright new day!  Even so, Lord Jesus, come quickly!

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2 thoughts on “Contentment Is a Two-Sided Coin…

  1. Thank you for your blog, I just found it. I too am dealing with a chronically ill spouse (diabled police officer,hit by a car and in chronic pain) and have two small children, 4 and 2. I work full time and am the bread winner and due to my husbands condition our plans for homeschooling were derailed and i had to put the kids in school and daycare. fortunately they are adjusting well. My husband sleeps a lot and lately (almost 24-7) so is unable to help with the children. . I have felt mostly like a single parent and extremely lonely. My family does not understand and would probably prefer I get a divorce because some of his issues are self-induced byhim from taking so much pain medication. Their mentality is starting to rub off on me, which I know is not good. My friends also don’t understand and I am starting to feel very isolated. Fortunately we are connected to a wonderful church and we are both receiving counseling but sometimes it’s just not enough. I too deal with my own issues of anxiety and depression which get put by the wayside due to the needs of my husband. I have been studying The Word and praying, but I am not receiving the “immediate relief” we all search for. I know that we will not have complete peace until we are at home with Him but it is hard toalways live in that mindset. Amen to “Jesus, come quickly”. i’m ready any time. yet i know in my heart there is work left to be done (unsaved love ones). I love Paul’s epistles and need to meditate on the truth daily. Thanks for your transparency and support, I will visit your site more often now that I know it’s here!

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  2. Gwen,
    So glad that my blog can give some small encouragement along the way. Thanks for taking the time to comment. I will pray with you about your situation right now. Loneliness is a common thread I hear from wives of chronically ill husbands. I have been on a yahoo support group for Christian ladies called husbandwithillness@yahoogroups.com for many years. Mostly I am a silent listener. It made me realize that though I was (at the time) the ONLY lady in my large congregation in my shoes that I was not alone. Even at church it can be lonely and isolating to have a chronically ill spouse. My husband, too, has struggled in the past to make truly good friends because it is hard to relate to anyone since all the men are working (or job hunting).

    I am currently working on a book of encouragement for Christian wives of chronically ill husbands. (In all my “spare” time—LOL!) I’ve read the summaries of several books in the secular realm for wives, and their advice is NOT what you need to remain faithful to your Lord and Savior. Keep resting in HIm, and keep yourself in the love of God as Jude says. Please feel free to touch base as often as you can and let me know how I can pray. I’m so glad God has given you two precious children. Love them hard! They grow up way too fast.

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