Anchoring Our Soul with Autoimmune Diseases
And so life goes...
We all know life has its ups and downs and things can go smoothly for a while and we may get thrown a curve ball. Sometimes these things that knock us off balance may be short lived and other times they can be life changing. I believe everyone knows whether they want to or not that life can turn on a dime. Turn on a dime…so many people use that expression but to think about it in terms of life, real life changing situations; the ability for a fast paced vehicle to turn so quickly in such a confined small place…that is the literal meaning. We are a small confined space in a huge vast universe. A universe that moves so fast all the time, like a photo where one body is standing still and streaks of lights all around them form a time lapsed image. A body in a sea of chaos with so much known and even more unknown, but what changes the perspective of this is when you have an anchor for your soul. When life throws something at you that you have to learn to cope, deal, struggle, and beat everyday to survive, you have to find that there is respite. This is something many tend to forget, not intentionally, but because of everything else swirling around them.
Life is difficult at times...
I have had a very hard time with living this year. I am not speaking in a bad sense of the word, more that I have been fighting my own body daily just to get through each day, never knowing what will happen to me or how I am going to feel from hour to hour. I have been sick so many times I cannot even keep track anymore and it truly wears a person down to their very core. In reality, if not for God, I probably would not be writing this today. Having been one to rarely get sick I knew something was happening to me for years and I put it off, until I could no longer and was diagnosed with systemic lupus. It is where your body attacks itself instead of attacking disease and sickness, for which there is no cure. I remember hearing a song, “In the eye of the storm” by Ryan Stevenson around the time I found out. I recall the lyrics about God being with us in the eye of the storm, He is our anchor. This is what got me through, that promise from God.
Truth about autoimmune on your life...
I lost a lot of my closest friends from not being able to go places or do things. They did not understand how debilitating this was on my body and tried offering up medical advice and supplements as cure all’s while making comments that unknowingly hurt me because the things they said were false. I was not having any issues with people, places, or my faith. I was having issues with learning how to live in a body that told me what we were going to do everyday. I was active and loved to do things. I had so many hobbies like helping the women’s ministry, I was always at church and bible study, taking photographs, going to craft fairs and participating with my newest designs or photos that I had taken, going four wheeling, horseback riding, soccer games with my children, other sports, working full time, hanging out with friends going shopping, meeting for lunch, etc. I had so much to do all the time, my husband used to ask me if I would ever please sit for 5 minutes. I had to change a lot after my three spinal fusions, no more four wheeling, had to walk less, hike less, no more sports help for the kids, but I made up for it finding other things that made me happy. When a disease hits you the way autoimmune does, it robs you of everything inside you. I began to do no shows for things I had always participated in, unintentionally, I would say I was going to go somewhere with every ounce of intention to go and then I wouldn’t wake up because I literally couldn’t, or I was sick with some weird contagious skin rash, or sick with pneumonia, bronchitis, something always holding me back. I then decided well if I stop planning ahead then I wont disappoint anyone. So that’s what I did. I started to respond with, “I am going to try to make it”. I think a lot of people took that as a no or she wont come. Without them realizing how much it was breaking my heart that I really couldn’t say if I was or not because I had to wait and see what my body was going to allow of me that day. It came to a point no one asked anymore, and honestly, I felt better because no asking, no disappointments. The disease was turning me into the biggest introvert I had ever known, and I am somewhat introverted to a point, until I get a feel for whom people are and whether or not we are similar, then I am very extrovert. Yet my love for everyone still remains because through it all, I do know no one has really gone away forever, they just haven’t completely understood what I have gone through and will continue to go through until they can find something that will help me live with flares and not in a constant one.
God our hope...
God is truly faithful, loving, and the love of my existence and life. God is never apart from me in anything that I do regardless of how I feel, what I am feeling, and where I am in my life, or where I go. He is always with me, this is the hope and faith I have because He has anchored my soul from here through eternity. Yesterday I was feeling sick and I wanted so much to have a good day, it was such a beautiful cool fall New York day and my favorite time of the year. Something about those little things like wearing a pair of comfortable yoga pants, soft socks, converse sneakers, soft American eagle tee and a big soft oversized hoodie to top it off. The smell of the fresh country air, the birds, the leaves starting to change color, the beauty God set all around us. I went outside to sit under my porch swing all protected from the sun going down and God gave me a verse but it was not just the one part of the verse, I was given more than that. I have reread this verse so many times, each time it seems more and more intense and thought provoking of the favor, love and consistency of God and His promises.
“Surely blessing I will bless you, and multiplying I will multiply you.” And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise. For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute. Thus God, determining to show more abundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath, that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we have strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us.
This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil, Hebrews 6:14-19 NKJV
in more words...
I took this apart to understand God and what he was truly telling me as He tells us to in Joshua 1:8 …you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.
When we think of hope or someone being hopeful in a worldly sense we look at them all filled with wonder and joy…they “hope’ for that worldly response, the short term “feeling” they receive from getting something they have been longing for. Some may walk around happy and with a very positive attitude about things, but at the same time biblical hope is also optimistic yet it differs from the worldly perspective of hopeful thinking, optimism and positivity in life. In the Bible we are given optimism from truth and certainty from God, not by looking on the bright side and staying positive. Hope must be based on truth and certainty or it isn’t valid, it would be based on fantasy. Romans 8:13 For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. God is hope, just as much as God is love, and more. In order for us to shine God’s light onto others even in our darkest times we must show the God of hope, who is inside of us. We have to represent how great God is in this hopeless world by being people of hope, not just cheerful optimists, but people filled with hope based on the certainty of Gods promises in Christ.
In Hebrews the attention was towards people facing hardships and prosecution of their faith. In the terms I am speaking it could be the same, we face hardships with sickness, disease, etc. and the prosecution of faith could be self, the battle within to not lose ground and making sure you grab that anchor and never let go. Always reminding ourselves to persevere through the worst of trials and storms as Christ did for us, the promises of God our Father, who cannot lie, who gave the sacrifice of His son, so that through Him we can have an everlasting eternal peace in His kingdom.
another godcidence...don't skip the following video
i was looking for a video to add to this article so I typed in lupus strong and god under the search parameters of youtube and I found this video, she shares my exact thoughts, what are the chances <3 MUST SEE
This I would cry if I could produce tears...
Jesus was the one to go before us, for us, He is behind the veil in Heaven. The anchor is used as a metaphor here to hold us from Heaven. The certain hope of our future salvation is an anchor to steady our souls while we wait on God in present storms. Anchors are defined in many ways, this being a definition I find most fitting; a person or thing that can be relied on for support, stability, or security; mainstay: binding one thing to another. The promises of God to our life and eternal salvation, that in Christ we have the hope, the utmost certainty, from God, who cannot lie, that we are sealed and blessed beyond measure in everyway by anything we face, endure, are confronted with, and share as a beacon on a lighthouse to others to share this hope until we are brought home to Him.
Be an Inspiration & Raise Awareness
We may not realize this, but whatever we go through in life, whether good or bad, big or small, we can use that for God’s glory. It’s all on perspective. You control the perspective of your situations, only you. You have three choices; you can hide from it, give up and let it beat you, or shout it from the mountaintops and share your hope with others so that you can inspire someone. You may not be an inspiration to the whole world, but to one person you may be a whole world of inspiration, that’s all that matters. In time people will understand things you have been through, what you have to continue to always go through and they will understand that you are different now, but your heart never changed. They will see that you continue to survive, to trust, to have the hope to keep going and to help others where you can, how you can. In this, God knows all, the matters in your heart, and His love is within you, keep your faith and stay strong because God never leaves.
Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Awareness (and others)
Multiple Connective Tissue Disease Awareness
Autoimmune Disease Awareness