Monday, January 2, 2017

Why I Fight So Hard

"If you want to build a ship, don't herd people together to collect wood and don't assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea." -Antoine De Saint-Exupery

One thing I have learned about being chronically ill is that I can spout off facts and figures til I'm blue in the face, but unless I get people to CARE, it doesn't matter. That’s one reason why I’m so open about my health, about my struggles, and about my feelings. 

I have put videos on youtube where I have bed-head and not a stitch of make up on (and this from a girl who used to not even walk out to the mailbox without makeup on!).  I am willing to embarrass myself and talk about things that 10 years ago I wouldn't even whisper about.


Because I want people to UNDERSTAND.  I don't want to order them around and tell them to give money or walk for a cure or any other thing to do.  I want them to "long for" people with chronic illness and develop compassion and caring for their fellowman.  I want people to truly FEEL for people who are, in some way, “the least of these.”

If you’ve read anything I’ve written you might come to the conclusion that I tend to “harp” on this issue.  Matthew 25.  Feeding the hungry.  Clothing the naked.  Visiting the sick and imprisoned.  As a friend of mine always says, “It’s all about the widows and orphans.”  That about sums it up, doesn’t it? It really isn't rocket science.

So, do I harp on this issue? You'd better believe it. I'll harp on it until the day I die. If it does no good for me in this lifetime, I'm okay with that. But I may be helping someone out there somewhere who reads this and decides they need to start helping folks out a bit more.

Some of us with chronic illness are weak and tired, in pain, just plain suffering.  I know there are reasons that I may never understand. And I’m okay with that.  God is in control, and He’s got me in the palm of His hand. His plans are so much better than it's all Him for me.

However, none of my responsibilities go away. I have zero energy on some days.  It’s all I can do to get out of bed.  I have friends who CAN’T get out of bed on their own.  It doesn't matter if I don't feel good. I still have a child to take care of, and things that need to get done. I can't just curl up in a ball and let the world go on its merry way.

Call me a hopeless optimist.  I just have to believe there is more to people.  That there is better out there than the latest examples I’ve seen of “humanity.” That people can love and be decent to one another.  If I didn't have that to hang my hat on, I'd have a hard time holding my head up at all. 

“Carry each others' burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ….Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. 10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.” Galatians 6:2,9-10


Lisa Ehrman said...

I love this post, and have said and felt many of the same things. Chronic illness is so hard to relate to, unless you have it yourself. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. God bless :)

Kerri Sweeris said...

Thanks, Lisa! I don't know what I would do without online support! My family is wonderful, but as you said, unless you *have* a chronic illness, you just can't "get it". Thanks for stopping by!

Kim@stuffcould.... said...

What a great post! I don't hardly know life without MS....I always wanted to be "normal". I can't help but be optimistic as the Lord has given me a great life.