Wednesday, December 07, 2011

7th December

And I still feel pretty good today, maybe a little tired. But I’ve achieved rather more than normal having spent a couple of hours decorating. Work is always satisfying, especially when so often over the past weeks I’ve barely managed a half-hour effort and that meant my simple bathroom project would take forever to finish. Ill health is boring and so are the downers caused by grief... sometimes it feels like a vicious circle and I’m not sure which comes first. But who’s complaining as right now I feel good and ready to tackle the world again. Having lived with M.E. for over 12 years I’ve become accustomed to analysing my life, in order to measure my activity levels, and control how ill I am. Most of the time I can function fairly normally especially if I avoid stress. But I only begin to make anything like a recovery after spending lots of time outdoors during the summer. I’ve sometimes wondered about relocating for the winter months to a warmer climate, even just the once to see what happened. Anyway, though bereavement can be horribly stressful, there’s no way can it compare with providing palliative care in the home for my lovely Jane. So surely I’m better off now aren’t I? I still miss her though…

For me, though, there is one major ingredient that changes the rules. Taking my eyes off of myself has to be healthy. Engaging with the needs of others would be worthwhile and a great distraction. But I don’t feel ready for that just yet. I still need some TLC myself, I feel very fragile and the slightest hint of confrontation finds me retreating into a protective shell. I don’t want to know about anything that causes hassle, my life only works with a level path set before me. So I fix my eyes upon the Lord, and seek his favour and try and live in a way that pleases him. And I have to live with the trust that he is directing my path and leading me into a new life. I can’t do it alone.

The only thing that makes any sense is my faith journey; it explains why we suffer and the reality of life after death. That’s why I have no doubt about Jane’s new life. And I’m so grateful for having an understanding of the Bible to provide a solid grounding in belief. It’s an amazing book and without it I’d just have to make up my own version of reality as do so many. Indeed we should all make our own minds up about the existence of God and heaven and even hell. Sadly, many ignore the subject completely, which is foolish as God won’t cease to exist just because some don’t believe in him! He is not the product of our need for a spiritual dimension to life or a construct of our imagination. He exists exactly as revealed in the Bible. Now in the UK relatively few would have a strong and sure assertion of faith. And even fewer would confess Christ as their Saviour. So ignoring the very small number of increasingly vocal atheists, the vast majority of folk allow inaction to define them as agnostic or unsure, which is exactly where I was before becoming a Christian. Pursuing truth about the nature of God has to be the smartest thing I’ve ever done. But I don’t simply trust in a spiritual or emotional experience, in some meeting or other, as I’m quite particular about what I believe. So I’m always wary of any person who teaches Christianity and makes claims I’m not familiar with. I’ve decided that the Bible is to be the ultimate measure of truth in my life. So whether it be a so called spiritual experience, or a decision to make, I check it out with my Bible and the truths and principles revealed there. That’s why I try and read a little every day, to make sure I know what it says. And it most certainly talks of life after death in a place called heaven.

Philippians 3:20-21 ‘But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Saviour. He will take our weak mortal bodies and change them into glorious bodies like his own, using the same power with which he will bring everything under his control.’ (NLT)

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