Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Blessings In Disguise

By Erika Rizkallah

I have a love-hate attitude about my chronic pain, a condition called Small Polyfiber Neuropathy. Of course I hate pain. But if I didn't have it, I wouldn't have been given a gift. One of those blessings in disguise things, if you know what I mean. 

Living an Unstuck life is all about freedom and movement. As we walk along the path of life God set out for us, we have freedom and rest for our souls. We also have movement... 

            We're walking with Him.

We're not stuck

However, we can be lured into that trapped/stuck lifestyle at any time. We have an adversary (Satan) who spends 100% of his time trying to kill, steal and destroy our life and everything meaningful to us.

Let's face it, we don't spend 100% of our time on anything; this gives him an advantage over us if we're not walking in the spirit.

We can be following God's plan when out of nowhere, we're hit with the rotten parts of life: confusion, crisis, strife in the home or an illness. These things come with decisions: Are we going to continue moving or are we going to let it paralyze us?

That's what happened to me when illness first struck. I didn't know what my body was doing or why - and neither did the doctors. Everything came to a screeching halt (me = screeching). But after a while, I resolved to get back on my feet and serve Him in my weakness. 

I also wanted to press on with my goals and enjoy the full life Jesus meant for me to have. 

I love to sing. I've been singing since I was four and was in choirs until high school. Then I got kicked out (long story) and stopped singing in groups. For the past three years I've been telling God I'd sing in his choir in Heaven, but several weeks ago I thought NO...I'm going to sing now! 

So I prayed for a choir I could sing with, and then...voila! I got the opportunity and joined it. Best of all, I get to sing with my daughter, Katya. 

Our choir is a mixed group of teens and adults and we traveled together to Tennessee to see three regional Broadway plays and perform a concert for a large church.

                                                       Two of our fave actors: Anna & Austin

I can't explain how joyful I felt watching people praise God from our position behind the pulpit. I now know what it means to offer myself as a living sacrifice and it was worth every ounce of pain I feel now.
                                                          Enjoying life with my daughter 
                                                                                               (I take terrible selfies)

What about you? Have you recognized any blessings in disguise from your illness?

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