By Lynne Fickett
"My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I made strong." (II Corinthians 12:9-10 NAS)
When we talk about grace, more often than not, our attention focuses on the aspect of salvation, the unmerited favor of God in the life of the believer. Grace and acceptance go hand in hand; The Father extends His grace to fallen man through the acknowledgment of our sinful nature and the acceptance of Jesus' death on the cross as payment for our sin.
It is harder to look at grace from the standpoint of our own pain and suffering. Grace isnít always easy to see when our health suffers or when we are suffering emotionally. The apostle Paul speaks clearly in II Corinthians 12:9-10, saying that God's grace is sufficient to meet all of our needs and strengthens us through living with weaknesses and infirmities, receiving God's power through Christ.
As we recognize our humanity, we can have gratitude in our hearts for Christ's sacrificial death, submit our lives to God and receive the grace that He desires to give us.
Those of us who have experienced chronic or long-term health problems are familiar with the day-to-day issues associated with infirmities. Every day we need to encourage ourselves to keep the momentum going and our spirits high. Fitting into this group for some years now, I have come to see that God trusts me to bear these health problems with the measure of grace that He has provided for me. Those around me can be aware of God's presence through me whether or not they know Him personally. This can be an ongoing challenge depending on one's circumstances and temperament. When we give it all to Him, He is faithful to take it all and gives us the strength for that day, hour, or minute-whatever the need.
In my own spiritual journey to understand God's grace in my life, I started keeping a journal of sorts that began to speak to me of my spiritual condition. I saw that I needed to walk more fully in His grace as a testimony of what He can do in a life that is submitted to God. I began to write poetry as form of inner healing; developing an understanding of what I was feeling and asking for the grace to change and adapt to new circumstances in my life. God has provided me the strength to be productive in my daily life, giving me many various outlets for creativity, to be industrious, and alive.
I am grateful for the mindset that has kept me focused on the necessities of life for my own well-being and even more than that, to be focused on keeping a positive mental outlook on life and the way I perceive my life in the world around me. Just as salvation is a decision that I make, I must choose to walk in God's grace on a daily basis. When I voluntarily give up the desire to control my circumstances, I give God the opportunity to provide for me out of His storehouse of grace.
The grace that God has bestowed on me has increased my compassion for others who have ongoing health-related issues in their own lives. When I have the opportunity to share my life with others and how God has touched my life, I stand amazed at the work he has performed in me. All the praise goes to You, Lord Jesus, for your many blessings.
Writing poetry since 1996, Lynne Fickett has been a member of FaithWriters since 2003. Through her poetry, Lynne enjoys making people laugh, but also reveals in her writing a serious side that reflects her faith and understanding of the scriptures. In addition to writing poetry, her interests include needlepoint, crocheting, and other various crafting projects. You can write to Lynne care of the Letters page of this magazine.
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