This past Sunday I had the opportunity to share with an adult Sunday School class about Broken but Priceless Ministries and chronic illnesses. As I was explaining to the class what it is like to live with a chronic illness I got quite emotional. The pain and darkness that can overtake us seems so strong sometimes.
To be perfectly honest I have thought more than once about what it would be like to end it all or to drown my sorrows away. I have never followed through because I know that God loves me and He has a plan for my life, even in the midst of brokenness and darkness. I am priceless; and so are you. You are valuable and important and needed. If you are in a dark place today, please, reach out to someone. Pick up the phone and call someone, or go stay in a place where you don’t have to be alone. This world needs you.
What does the Lord desire? The Apostle Paul continues his letter by saying, “Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ (Ephesians 5:18-20).”
When it would be so easy to open a bottle of liquor and forget about our pain and sadness we need to remember what God wants us to do…and why. Paul tells us that getting drunk will ruin our lives. You may think that your life is ruined already, but it’s not. In this context “ruin your life” also means “to be hopelessly sick.”
Friend, you may be sick, but you don’t have to be hopelessly sick. In Christ there is unending hope. That’s why Paul tells us to be filled with the Spirit instead of getting drunk. We have a need and the Holy Spirit of God is the only one who can satisfy that need. He will give you hope when you feel hopeless.
When we understand that the Lord wants us to be filled with the Spirit so that He can give us hope, it is only natural to sing praises to the Lord with all our hearts and thank God for what He has done. There are many substitutes and imitations, but I promise you this - none of those things can begin to rival the hope and peace you will find in Jesus.
You will probably still be sick, but you won’t be hopelessly sick. Please, call out to Jesus and let Him fill your heart and hold you close. It’s not complicated; all you have to do is ask Him. Talk to Him like you talk to a friend. He will listen and He will transform your life, if you let Him.
“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.” –Romans 15:13, ESV
© April 9, 2013