Revisiting: I Want to Know and I Want to Know NOW!

As we deal with the uncertainty of my husband's current leukemia treatment, the need to know becomes strong.  Realizing that, once again, we are in the realm of having to trust day-by-day is, at the same time, comforting and also uncomfortable.  This is a pertinent 'revisit' for me today.  For some of you, it will be 'new, for others, a revisit.  In either case, I pray the words speak to you in an encouraging way.

I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:11-13 (New International Version)

One of the facts of life that chronic illness drives home is that life is filled with uncertainty.  I know it took years for my doctors to diagnose me – and I spent many decades wondering what my body was doing – and even if it was my body doing it.

Many docs alluded to the fact that my problems might be psycho-somatic.  I had labels of anorexia, hypochondria, and all other wonderful problems thrust upon me before a few wise doctors figured out my somewhat obscure disorders.  At one point I was told to “get my affairs in order” as I was probably dying.  Twenty years later, I guess they were wrong about the immediacy of that event.

My life is still filled with uncertainty.  Will today be a good day or a bad day?  Will my body hurt with every movement or will I be able to function in the manner which I now consider “normal”?  Will I regain much movement and be able to do more?  Will winter have the same disabling effect on me it has had the past few years?  Uncertainty.

It has been said that the feeling we humans deal with the worst is that of ambiguity: not knowing.  I think I’d have to agree.  I like to know and to understand.  I want things to make sense.  Unfortunately, life isn’t that that – and it’s driven home by my challenges on a daily basis.

When I talk to others with chronic illnesses, I realize I am not alone in not liking uncertainty.  While talking with a group of friends the other day, on gal remarked that her goal was to accept where she is at right now.

What a great goal.  I realize I don’t HAVE to know.  I’d like to.  But I don’t have to.  It’s a challenge above most I’ve faced to be “content” with where I am.  How can you be content when you are in pain? 

I think God knew we’d face that dilemma in our lives as his word promises us “peace beyond all understanding.”  

I’m not talking about being content with the things we might have the ability to change.  I’m not talking about stagnating where we are, but rather – moving on as best we can, taking care of ourselves – and leaving the outcome to God.

It always seems to go back to one step at a time.  

One thing we can be certain about is that God cares, knows where we are, and is with us during each step of our journey.  We can find our contentment in Him.

That is one thing of which I am certain!

Father God, thank you for the many lessons we can learn as we travel through our lives.  Help us to listen and learn from them as they guide us ever close to You.  Amen and Amen.


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