If I could be honest, today was a difficult day for me. I went to a rheumatologist for a small issue with my feet, and they ran some blood work and other tests. Everything’s fine. In fact, I am healthier than I have been in a LONG time. I don’t have anything against doctors, but I realized today that visiting them brings up a lot of frustration that I have inside of me.
For example: How can I have gone through this entire day with an extremely high pain level and have completely normal blood work? I’m not saying that they should have found something or that I wanted them to find something. I am happy that everything was fine. It’s just weird to me that everything inside of me feels…not right, but everything looks…just fine. Can I get a witness?
This is complaining Chelsea. However, she was put to rest about 4:00pm when complaining Chelsea met with Won’t Put Up With It Jesus and He put her in her place. That makes Him sound so unloving. He is the most loving Person I have ever known. However, in His love for me, He calls me to greater things than pity parties and doubt-filled thoughts. He calls me to be victorious.
So the conversation that happened in my brain in a glorious clash of the current Bible study and prayer actually involved four people: me, Jesus, Luz (one of our disciples) and Alejandro, our disciple who was teaching the Bible Study lesson. And it went something like this:
Alejandro: If your faith falters when the testing comes, what kind of faith is that?
Me: God, this isn’t a simple test. 12 years??? And no one knows how hard it is to walk through it. Why did you allow me to have a type of sickness that a lot of people don’t believe exists? Etc. etc. etc….It was ridiculous. You really don’t want to hear the rest.
God: So…that’s not the girl I created you to be. I created you to fight. So why are you laying down now? Get up!
Alejandro: There’s no victory without a battle, and the bigger the test, the greater the potential for growth.
Luz: It’s important to remember that the moment we step foot on the battlefield, we already have the victory.
Me: Got it.
Once God changed my perspective, He was able to use me in the next half-hour to speak kindness into the lives of two unsuspecting people. Stuck in my own world and consumed by my own problems, I would have missed those opportunities completely. However, focused on Him, He used me to bring two people closer to Him. But then He took it a step further.
One of my teammates invited me to watch the movie “Not A Fan” tonight. Sorry if I ruin this for someone, but one of the scenes in the movie was a funeral that didn’t go quite as planned. Instead of just a couple pre-arranged people sharing about the difference this person made in their lives, many people shared incredible stories about how this person took his time and his resources and poured them out over these peoples’ lives. He saw needs and he spoke into them. The daughter said to her mother, “I want to live like that.” I said the same in my heart as well.
I want that kind of a legacy; not that I need a ton of people to stand up at my funeral and say nice things about me. We generally say nice things about dead people unless they were particularly terrible. However, I want a legacy that makes people say in their hearts, “I want to live like that.” I want to pour out love extravagantly.
And then I realized something that God is trying to teach me. I have heard it said that the true test comes when we can be there for others in the midst of our own struggles. I might change the words of that saying to run: True and selfless faith is able to lavish itself on others even in the midst of its own battle. I have pain 24 hours a day. However, God wants to teach me what it means to keep my eyes so focused on Him that there exists no distraction, that I see others through His eyes and that I am ready and available to participate in their stories as He leads me. You see, a legacy of pure and poured out love can’t be made when our focus is on ourselves and our issues. There’s always an excuse. If it wasn’t chronic pain for me, it would be something else, I guarantee it. A legacy of pure and poured out love only comes from eyes that are fixed on Jesus, a mind that absolutely knows it is victorious in Christ, and a heart that is always ready to be broken and poured out.
May I live my life in such a way that others are drawn closer to this irresistible God and find His hope to carry them through their storms. May God use whatever means necessary to display His strength in my life, and may I not be ashamed of weakness. Because you know what? This isn’t even my story; and all of this has nothing to do with me. It does, however, have EVERYTHING to do with Him. So may all the glory be given to Him who deserves every bit of it. Amen.