“Be sober, be vigilant;
because your adversary the Devil
walks about like a roaring lion,
seeking whom he may devour.”
Desperation. The downside to chronic illness. When you’ve tried everything, yet nothing makes the pain go away.
You fill in the blanks.
The side effects. The sleepless nights.
The myriad of appointments with endless specialists. The constant stringing along to the next test result.
Even the medical profession and the whole medical system, seeing the long-term harm that early carelessness and the cavalier handling of my husband’s health from his infancy caused.
You’re cornered, and that roaring lion is seeking to devour your very faith. Can you smell the putrid breath of this king of the beasts who cracks bones with his giant jaws and crushes the life out of his victims?
Life hands you no way out. As a wife watching the downward spiral, it’s sometimes all you can do to cobble together an existence from day to day. But you do. You must. Life goes on.
You catch your breath, barely, and keep moving. Where is the hope in this?
“Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by our brotherhood in he world.” 1 Peter 5:8-9
It’s not seeing a demon behind every bush. Even nature teaches us that predators go after the young and the weak in every herd.
Yep. Satan is out to get our children and the chronically ill among us. As caregivers burdened down, we are right in the line of fire, too. We’re the straggler that stays behind to help the one who is struggling to keep up with the herd.
When the lion roars loudest is when we feel alone. Cut off from the Body. Separated from the herd, so to speak.
This is why churches of old emphasized visiting the sick and weak on a regular basis. The parish church was within walking distance, so the minister was readily available. Folks could pop in during the week to pray. But the weak were circled around and encouraged by the presence of a faithful minister from week to week, as he made his rounds of visits
How to be steadfast in the faith? How to resist?
Focus on ways to strengthen your faith.
“Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
If you can, leave your loved one for a few hours and hear God’s Word taught in person with God’s people.
Remember the Lion of the Tribe of Judah will fight your battles for you.
Humbly ask Him to fight for you. His kingdom will come and His will will be done. (Revelation 5:5, Isaiah 31:4-5)
Fight on your knees.
James 5:13-18 was a shot in the arm this week. God listened to Elijah’s prayer. In humble prayer, I ask for His listening ear.
A friend of mine saw her husband pass after years of cancer treatment. She told me that she sang Psalm 34 almost every day.
You know, the Psalms run the gamut of human experience. Fear, anger, jealousy, hate, love, joy, suffering, sorrow, with praise, always praise.
I often park myself in a Psalm and pray portions of it back to God.
Watch your media intake. None of it has been encouraging and faith-building lately, would you say?
Instead, find sources of uplifting music, media, and even friends to spend time with.
Offset the negativity with truth. Loveliness. Goodness.
My prayer is that this blog will be a place to share mutual sorrows, but also to help bind up and heal wounds.
A place where stragglers circle around each other with prayer, and face the lion’s roaring together with the Lion of the tribe of Judah.
How can I pray for you this week?