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Posts Tagged ‘illness’

The Dark Side of Christian Celebrity:  We love the rise and we love the fall. Both make for fantastic entertainment. I wonder sometimes if the reason we end up tearing down our celebrities is that we have elevated them to such a degree in the first place. Once we have done that, once we have put them on the biggest platforms and once we have given them publishing deals with the wealthiest publishers, there is really only one way for them to go, and it’s not up.

Help with holiness:  The Cripplegate has four solid book recommendations if you are interested in seriously knowing what God’s Word says about holiness.

Don’t Waste Your MRI:  Erik shares two spiritual lessons he took away from his MRI experience the other day.

Why You Should Celebrate Your Undone To-Do List:  David Murray thinks he may have just found a way to turn this daily self-torture into a cause for praise and rejoicing.

From 52home Christmas Shipping

TheLoveOfChristWeb-2

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Two professors from Baptist Bible College in PA reflect on their health situations. One suffers with an incurable condition of recurring and intense pain.  The other has stage 4 cancer.  Two moving articles entitled by men whose world has crashed down on them.

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“Perhaps cancer or some other debilitating disease has invaded your body, and you suspect that you do not have a very long time to live.  ‘What a waste,’ you are saying.  ‘Why can’t I be strong and healthy and live a long, long life?’  I do not know the answer to that.  What God does with us in detail is not revealed in Scripture.  It is one of the secret things that belong to God only.  But that does not mean the painful path he calls you to walk has no purpose.  It is how you conduct yourself in such ‘wasting times’ that is the stuff of victory.

Set an example for us by lifting your eyes from what is material and tangible and passing away, and point us to him who is invisible and who does everything well.  Show us how light and momentary these earthly troubles are.  We need to know that.  Show us how they are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.”

James Montgomery Boice, Romans (Grand Rapids, 1993), III:1447.

From:  He heeded his own exhortation

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Chronic pain and depression taught Joni Eareckson and Ken Tada to put each other’s needs first. Read the short interview here.

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Mark Altrogge reminds us that God doesn’t ever do something without a purpose and plan. In this post he shares several benefits of affliction in our lives including the following:

  • Afflictions deliver us from pride.
  • Afflictions make us sympathetic, merciful and slower to judge. 
  • Afflictions remind us of the brevity of this life and make us long for heaven where our true treasure is.
  • Afflictions stir us to pray and keep us dependent on God.
  • Afflictions are opportunities for Christ to display his power in us.

And there are more right here.

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9 purposes of sickness

The website J.C. Ryle Quotes shares the following from a tract Ryle wrote entitled “Christ in the Sick Room”.

Sickness is meant…

1. To make us think–to remind us that we have a soul as well as a body–an immortal soul–a soul that will live forever in happiness or in misery–and that if this soul is not saved we had better never have been born.

2. To teach us that there is a world beyond the grave–and that the world we now live in is only a training-place for another dwelling, where there will be no decay, no sorrow, no tears, no misery, and no sin.

3. To make us look at our past lives honestly, fairly, and conscientiously.Am I ready for my great change if I should not get better? Do I repent truly of my sins? Are my sins forgiven and washed away in Christ’s blood? Am I prepared to meet God?

4. To make us see the emptiness of the world and its utter inability to satisfy the highest and deepest needs of the soul.

5. To send us to our Bibles. That blessed Book, in the days of health, is too often left on the shelf, becomes the safest place in which to put a bank-note, and is never opened from January to December. But sickness often brings it down from the shelf and throws new light on its pages.

6. To make us pray. Too many, I fear, never pray at all, or they only rattle over a few hurried words morning and evening without thinking what they do. But prayer often becomes a reality when the valley of the shadow of death is in sight.

7. To make us repent and break off our sins. If we will not hear the voice of mercies, God sometimes makes us “hear the rod.”

8. To draw us to Christ. Naturally we do not see the full value of that blessed Savior. We secretly imagine that our prayers, good deeds, and sacrament-receiving will save our souls. But when flesh begins to fail, the absolute necessity of a Redeemer, a Mediator, and an Advocate with the Father, stands out before men’s eyes like fire, and makes them understand those words, “Simply to Your cross I cling,” as they never did before. Sickness has done this for many–they have found Christ in the sick room.

9. To make us feeling and sympathizing towards others. By nature we are all far below our blessed Master’s example, who had not only a hand to help all, but a heart to feel for all. None, I suspect, are so unable to sympathize as those who have never had trouble themselves–and none are so able to feel as those who have drunk most deeply the cup of pain and sorrow.

Summary: Beware of fretting, murmuring, complaining, and giving way to an impatient spirit. Regard your sickness as a blessing in disguise – a good and not an evil – a friend and not an enemy. No doubt we should all prefer to learn spiritual lessons in the school of ease and not under the rod. But rest assured that God knows better than we do how to teach us. The light of the last day will show you that there was a meaning and a “need be” in all your bodily ailments. The lessons that we learn on a sick-bed, when we are shut out from the world, are often lessons which we should never learn elsewhere.

(via J.C. Ryle Quotes)

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No one understands like Jesus,
He’s a friend beyond compare;
Meet Him at the throne of mercy,
He is waiting for you there.

No one understands like Jesus,
Every woe He sees and feels;
Tenderly He whispers comfort,
And the broken heart He heals.

No one understands like Jesus,
When the foes of life assail;
You should never be discouraged,
Jesus cares and will not fail.

No one understands like Jesus,
When you falter on the way;
Tho’ you fail Him, sadly fail Him
He will pardon you today.

Chorus:
No one understands like Jesus,
When the days are dark and grim;
No one is so near, so dear as Jesus,
Cast your every care on Him.

–John W. Peterson,  made well known by George Beverly Shea

Since then we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:14–16, ESV)

 

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