Guess what today is? Friday! That means it’s time for another segment (the 64th!) of my fictional story, When Life Hands You Lymes. I’ve actually reached a point on the story where I’ve switched things up, so next week isn’t going to continue on at the same place where this post leaves all. That means y’all are going to need to hold on tight and get ready for some change. Good change, of course.
Just two quick announcements before we get to the story:
1. The winner of this giveaway is CT! Congratulations! I’ve emailed you.
2. I would be delighted if y’all would take about a minute of your time and vote here if you haven’t already.
And now for the story. As always, comments are eagerly welcomed!
“I’m so glad we can have this time to hang out together, just the two of us.” Jason waited for me to sit down before joining me at the table.
“Thank you for bringing me here.” I had been ecstatic when Jason asked me if I wanted to go out to eat with just him at one of his favorite restaurants. I knew he’d probably find time to take the rest of the family out one-by-one, but the fact that he asked me first made me feel all special inside.
“My pleasure.” Jason opened the menu and handed it to me. “Their chicken is the best in the city.” He pointed at the section and then shrugged, “But really, it doesn’t matter what you, get just order whatever you’re hungry for.”
“Oh, that does look good.” After debating for a few moments I ordered pasta with white sauce, a grilled chicken breast, a side of broccoli and a coke.
After a few minutes of chit-chat and munching on the delicious French bread, the conversation migrated to a more serious topic.
“I hear you’re still not feeling well.” Jason’s dark eyes had been showing his concern since we arrived the day before and I had sensed him watching me several times. “Now that you’re here, I can see it for myself. You’ve changed.”
I toyed with the last bite of my bread and nodded.
“What do you have to say about all this?”
“I’m confused.” I stop and wait while the waiter comes over and refills our drinks. “I’ve been sick for well over a year now and we can’t find out why,” I continue once the waiter has move on. The calming ambience of the room and Jason’s intense concentration on me is making it easy to talk in a dignified manner. No outbursts of emotions will leak out of me in a public place. “It’s real discouraging, you know?”
“And then the other day I was reading in my Bible and it says that all things work together for good to those who love God and are called according to His purpose. Well, I love God so, does this mean that this stupid sickness is part of His plan for my life?” I pick the straw wrapper off of the white tablecloth and crumple it. “Cause that really doesn’t seem fair.”
Jason starts to say something, but I stop him.
“Yeah, I know. Life isn’t fair. I get that.”
“Believe it or not that’s not what I was going to say.” Jason shakes his head with a smile, “I could be such a know-it-all older brother.”
Life Isn’t Fair used to be one of Jason’s favorite quotes when I complained about anything as a little girl. He was such an annoying person back then. Thankfully our relationship has matured and grown a tremendous amount since those early years. I wait for Jason to continue. He can’t be rushed and that’s one thing I appreciate about him. I hate it when everyone is constantly in a hurry.
“Have you ever thought about why there is sickness and pain in the world?”
“Thought about it? Yes. Come up with a satisfactory answer? No.” I’d actually spent many hours pondering the subject but the few books I’d ventured to read on the subject had been full of wishy-washy weird stuff that left me feeling a tad creeped out.
“In Genesis we read about how God created a perfect world and then when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate from the tree God had told them not to, sin entered the word. That’s where the origin of every single problem we face in the world came from.”
Light bulb moment. I’ve read Genesis several times yet somehow I failed to connect the account I read with the real world I was experiencing. “Go on,” I say after Jason remains quiet for a minute.
“A lot of people wonder how a loving God could allow all the sin and suffering in the world that we see today. What they don’t realize is that God created a perfect world for us to live in and mankind is the one who destroyed it.”
“That makes a lot of sense.” Studying my Bible more was going at the top of my priorities list. “So, it’s not that God actually wants me to be sick? But isn’t He powerful enough to heal me?”
“Of course He is,” Jason nods. “And throughout history and even in modern times He has supernaturally healed people, but He doesn’t always.”
Jason tilted his head to the side and looked off in the distance for a moment before answering, “I’m really not sure. I think God uses the trials we go through to help us to learn and grow and depend on Him more. It’s a refining process that helps make us into the people who He created us to be.”
“And that’s where the verse comes in All things work together for good to them that love God and are called according to His purpose?”
“So does that mean that I’m sick because I have an extra amount of stuff to learn and God doesn’t think I can learn it while I’m healthy?” Ugg, this was getting confusing.
“I don’t think that’s the way it works.” Jason shook his head. “You know what, I really don’t know the Bible like I should and I’m not as good at explaining what I do know as I’d like to be. I do think that God has an amazing plan for your life though and I know you’re smart enough to research this and try and find some answers.”
His faith in me made me smile. “Thanks, bro.” I flicked the straw wrapper back onto the table and that’s when I realized our food had arrived. My face must have registered surprise, because Jason broke into a grin,
“I didn’t notice them bring it either. We must have been totally focused on our conversation.”