Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Sick for His Service

Exactly one week before Palm Sunday, just when the busiest month of 2007 was in sight, I became sick. Just when I had translating, songleading, choir renditions, Bible studies, and praise and worships all lining up in my itinerary, my body refused to get along with me and obstinately broke down.

Then, even in my frailty, I was self-glorifying. Surely I was working too hard for the Lord. Surely God would be pleased to see how His young servant was pouring out her health and life for Him. I felt so sacrificial.

Upon realizing the faultiness of such thinking, I changed my mind path. This time around, I turned to "faith." Since I was so important to the work of God's kingdom in the coming two weeks, He would surely heal me....right? On second thought, maybe not.

I must not be focused upon myself; I must have my heart with God. Switching to my third line of thought in my two-and-a-half days of illness, I willed myself to recover. I refused to allow myself to wallow in my physical misery. I was determined to regain my health in order to serve God. Wow, now I was so right...right?

I went to sleep on Monday night, certain that I would be totally well by Tuesday. After all, God must be moved by my heart to serve Him immediately upon recovery. I woke up on Tuesday sicker than ever. I guess I was wrong.

After many more hours of alternating pain and medication, I realized one thing. Perhaps this illness was not a trial, as I had all the while considered it to be. Perhaps this time of weakness was, more than anything else, a reminder from the Lord.

True, I am I capable and skilled worker. Yes, I am an experienced church volunteer with a will to serve. However, I am nothing by my own strength, and I am in no way indispensable. If God wants me sick, then I could never will myself to health. If God does not empower me, I am helpless. If God does not choose to use me, then He will use others, whether I like it or not.

By God's grace, I am nearly fully well now, quite in time for all the camps, meetings, and rehearsals. In spite of my foolishness, God seems to still be willing to use me. Praise the Lord. As I try to serve Him by His power in the coming days, may He bless me with not only the strength to complete my tasks, but with a heart of humility, reliance, and thanksgiving.