30 Ways I Have Been Blessed Through My Illness

Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust Him and He will help you. He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn, and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun. – Psalm 37:5-6

photo credit: Michele Cannone via photopin cc

photo credit: Michele Cannone via photopin cc

My friend, Will, is just one of the many people who conquer their illness every day and inspire me to keep the faith. This one’s for you, Will. 🙂

Last week, in honor of Invisible Illness Awareness Week, I shared my 30 things meme… 30 Things You Might Not Know About My Invisible Illness. This is the mirror to that meme. You see, you might not realize it, but I have also been blessed by this journey. Here are 30 ways.

1. I am now a more patient person, content with a slower pace. I am much less anxious in general. I know. Trust me, you don’t want to know what it was like before. :p

2. I am less of a control freak. I have learned to depend on others and that their way is just as good, or sometimes better, than mine. Shhh, it’s our little secret, ok?

3. As Will worded so perfectly, “I have gone from religion to relationship” with God. So deep, and I’ve gone deep. It’s a beautiful thing.

4. I have learned in real tangible ways, that my value is not in what I am able to do. To be honest, I’m still learning and relearning this one, pretty much daily.

5. I have met people since becoming ill that I never would have met otherwise. Some of these people are known only online, but they are brothers and sisters of my heart, and I wouldn’t want to miss our on the blessing of knowing them.

6. I have learned how to be empathetic.

7. I have learned to trust. Not everything that is real can be quantified and documented.

8. I have learned the value of rest and quiet.

9. I have gotten to see, live and in person, what an absolutely amazing man I married. I love him more each minute. We have a surety in our love now that couldn’t have gotten here any other way… I know that he will always be here, that he loves me for me. That is invaluable.

10. I now recognize how much my time and attention mean to my children. Time when absolutely nothing is “happening” except that we are together. Priceless, to both of us.

11. Illness has given me the clarity to see the people who weren’t genuine in my life, and the “ain’t nobody got time for that” to be able to move on without them.

12. I now treasure the tiniest things that most people take for granted. Swallowing, a shower, being able to see well enough to read or watch a movie. These things are HUGE in my life.

13. I have learned that pride is overrated.

14. I always take the time to listen now. Nothing is more important that relationship. Period.

15. I have been amazed over and over again at the provision and faithfulness and care of our Savior.

16. I have learned that grace is so much more than just the forgiveness of my sin.

17. Prayer is now the first and most powerful resort.

18. Rest is a beautiful, necessary thing.

19. I have learned to slow down and really soak things in. I notice details and use all my senses to take in a moment.

20. “How are you?” is no longer just a greeting.

21. I have much more time for prayer and Bible study now.

22. I now recognize that boredom is a blessing.

23. I am utilizing social media in ways that matter, rather than letting them run me.

24. I have learned to say NO, and that the world doesn’t fall apart if I do.

25. I now recognize that limitations are there for my good, not to frustrate me.

26. I am quicker now to recognize stress and much more active in eliminating it from my life.

27. I am forced to view things from an eternal perspective in order to continue in hope. This forces me closer to God on a regular basis.

28. I see only beauty in my church family. Because I am there so sporadically, I don’t have time for the dramas and the nit-picking. It’s lovely.

29. I have been able to meet people who would have felt alone had we not shared an illness. And I would have been lonely without them, too.

30. I have learned that the Why doesn’t matter nearly as much as the Who. <3

Father in Heaven, Thank You for showing me the blessings in the midst of my trials and suffering. Help each person reading this list to be able to relate their own joy in the middle of the storm. In Jesus’ Name, Amen…

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May God Bless You,


18 Comments on “30 Ways I Have Been Blessed Through My Illness

  1. Okay, Shelly, this time as tears are streaming down my face because I can soooooo relate to everything you wrote
    I do just have one comment …. AMEN and AMEN!!!
    I love you, Barb♡♡♡♡♡

    • I love you, too, Barb!! You are a sister of my heart. Heart Hugs, Shelly <3

  2. Well done…, but I didn’t expect anything less.
    Number 12 is so true. While in the shower this morning, I was thanking God for it. I hurt and it felt good. It also caused me to pray for those who can’t, eg. those in the hospital, imprisoned for Christ or those living in unacceptable conditions. While God has been moving me in that direction for a while, a big leap was when a friend brought back a picture of a woman in Haiti. She too lives with chronic illness. She lives in a hut with little protection from extreme cold or heat. She sleeps on a mat on the floor. She has two dresses. She has little help, let alone significant medical care. Needless to say, I am now more thankful and am often challenged when tempted to get frustrated with doctors, insurance, etc.
    Thanks again for your ministry. It is a blessing. May God continue to bless you today and always.

    • How right you are, Will. We are blessed, indeed!! Heart Hugs, Shelly <3

  3. You have a great perspective, Shelly! It is a wonderful thing to be able to see the blessings in the middle of a trial. Your attitude, as always, is an inspiration to me and I know it is for others as well. Oh, you forgot to add one thing to the list: Becoming a blogger through and about chronic illness has enabled Shelly to reach and encourage people for Christ in a way that couldn’t have been done before. Shelly is able to connect and empathize with people who are going through trials with strength, love, understanding and wisdom.

    Love you, Shelly!

    Blessings, Joan
    Joan recently posted…Sharing His Beauty Blog Link UpMy Profile

    • Aw, Joan, you are SO sweet!!! And now I’m blushing and saying, “thank you”. Love you, sweet friend. Heart Hugs, Shelly <3

  4. Thank you for this, it’s so true, the darkness and light in every experience. I’m currently in a difficult stage and it’s helpful to remember the way even suffering is changing me for the better. Thanks for linking with Unforced Rhythms.
    Kelly Chripczuk recently posted…Half Moon Heart (a poem)My Profile

    • Thank you for blessing me with your comment, Kelly! Praying for you in this difficulty, that God will continue to show you His blessings. Heart Hugs, Shelly <3

  5. Hi Shelly,

    I so loved reading your 30 blessings through illness. I too have many that I would not exchange, one being that my relationship with God is much deeper, through dependency on Him. I am truly thankful for the doors He has opened, and trusting Him with the rest.

  6. Shelly, I’m going to re-post this as it is an awesome testimony that I feel will give others who suffer hidden illness to see what is possible and to see how God brings things of eternal value, even from suffering.
    So glad to read this as it is a window into your soul and I love getting to know you better through posts like this one.
    What a precious lady you are !
    Love and a Big HUG.

    • Thank you, Mary!! I pray it will encourage even one. I love you! <3 Heart Hugs, Shelly

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