Saturday, February 12, 2011

When the answer is NO

Isaiah 55:8  "My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the Lord.

I've been pondering this verse for a couple of days now.  What does it mean when the answer is different than the one I think is right? 

I often think that I would be a much better person if "only" I was well.  I could do so many more things.  I could work, volunteer, babysit, go on long trips, exercise,.......  then I look back and wonder who I was "before"?  Was I a better person?  Did I accomplish anymore that was worthwhile?  When I am honest with myself, I have to answer no to that question.  I was busier, I did more, but I don't think that it was necessarily "better". 

My relationship with God was not nearly as strong.  I was always compassionate, but I have learned so much more about compassion in the years I've been sick.  I've learned that things are not always as they seem.     I thought I knew all the answers.  I have learned that I indeed do not.

I have asked God many times to take away this disease.  He has chosen not to.  I have asked Him why?  He has chosen not to answer me.  Instead, He has strengthened me and given me more than I could ever ask for.  He has deepened my faith and blessed me in so many different ways.  You all are now a big part of that blessing. 

My personal life is full.  That is one of my favorite ways of describing it.  Full.  Not always full of good things, but indeed full.  God has supplied all I need to live this life He has given to me.  I run to Him and He fills me up. 

I choose to believe that while the answers to my questions are NO, there is a reason.  There is something better on the horizon for me.  I don't know what it is, or how it will present itself, but I know its there.  I will wait and try to be ready when it arrives.  I will live while I wait.  It may be from my bed or sofa, but I choose to live, regardless of the circumstances that come my way.  I will learn all I can about my condition, I will do the best I can with what I have been given.  I will continue to look forward.  And upward.  I will walk with Jesus down this long road.  

One of my favorite songs is "Praise you in this storm" by Casting Crowns.  It says it all.  

Thanks for being part of my blessing.  I am finding more of myself through all of you.  

Blessings to you all,



  1. Oh, Elaine, this is so lovely - so full of hope and the willingness to find goodness and joy in whatever God sends.

    I'm not generally one for self-help books, but I did read the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People at one point when I felt like illness was making me totally ineffective (i.e., "worthless"). Stephen Covey spends the first few chapters talking about the importance of having a mission or vision for life (he's Mormon, I believe, so his vision has a strong spiritual underpinning). It really made a difference for me, to realize that I can still further God's kingdom on earth despite illness.

    When you talk about learning more about compassion, that is incredibly powerful! And gorgeous! Illness isn't stopping you from bringing God's kingdom to life here and now. And it can't. Ever. As long as you seek God's way, "way will open," as the Quakers say.

    Blessings to you, Elaine, and good cheer!

  2. What a beautiful post Elaine. You are a gifted writer and using your gift is helping the rest of us!! I liked the vision of running to Jesus to be filled up. Sometimes I forget to do that. Dominique shared Phil 4:13 paraphrased that I use often. "I can do all things through Christ who CONTINUALLY pours His strength into me". God has said no to my healing too...for now? for good? I don't know, but I see ways in which I am healing slowly and that is a gift from Him. Healing emotionally and physically one day at a time.
    Again, thank you for sharing this with us....I have been listening to sermons this Sunday morning, and feel like I have just been given another message from God!

  3. Elaine, this is such a hard lesson to learn, but oh, so important! I like to focus on the commandment to be grateful in ALL things. All circumstances are a gift from God, trials as well as blessings. I know that there are hidden blessings in this disease. It just takes a willing heart to let God show them to us.

    Thank you for a lovely post!

  4. Stacy, Renee, and Shelli,

    Thank you for you very kind words. I try so hard to let God in and let Him dictate what I post. I am thankful that you are getting something out of them:) I am never sure about my words... something I am working on to be sure. I so appreciate your letting me be a part of your lives. I am getting so much from being a part of this place!

    God Bless and Keep You All,


  5. I also wanted to make sure that you knew that not all my posts will be "so sermony":) I will post about daily life and family, illness, etc... I just try to post what God seems to be leading me to and sometimes I feel no leading at all. Thanks for supporting me in this!