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~ Romans 8:31-32, NLV ~
As a fictional piece, I’ve been working on a novel for quite some time now, regarding the lives of two college students with life-threatening chronic diseases. The main character, Drew, lives with a bleeding disorder which he hardly has the will to handle on his own. Not that the disease is as difficult to handle as he makes it out to be, but rather he is able to magnify the disorder’s control over his life with how bitterly he regards it and all that it has held him back from throughout his life.The secondary protagonist, Julie, lives a life with Lupus, a disorder which physically keeps her bed-ridden for days, prevents her from exploring her passion for the great outdoors, and makes it difficult to attend her classes and focus on her studies. Unlike Drew, however, Julie has a way of appearing joyful and content with her existence each day. To Drew, this type of behavior seems alien, if not almost psychopathic. He cannot fathom how somebody suffering just as badly, most days worse than he, can be so full of an absolutely inhuman amount of bliss and glee.I had absently written a conversation between these two characters, about dead center of the book, and hardly realized what had been set to my paper,sa until after it was written. Between these two characters, both sick and frail, Drew had questioned Julie on how she could possibly be so positive on a regular basis, when the fact is that her body is literally eating itself alive. He was baffled, confounded, furious, and even more so after she provided an explanation:“It’s God, Drew… it’s all God and nothing else. I mean, just think about it for a sec’: He’s the reason why there are doctors on this earth who can treat me--doctors who make the medicines that keep me alive. He’s the reason why I can get up in the morning and get to sleep at night. He’s the reason why I got into this school, why I got in with enough scholarships to almost get a full ride, why I get to take the classes I like even though all the teachers should have turned me away… every breath I breathe, every step I take--it’s all because He says I can have it. How can I not be happy, knowing that He does so much for a little speck like me? How can I feel sorry for myself when I know the God of everything’s got my back?”
Our God is the God who formed the heavens and the earth, pieced together each and every cell of our being by hand, sprinkled every glistening speckle into each eye, placed every disk of every vertebrate in our spines, breathed to life each star and planet, commands the inhale and exhale of every breath: If the “what-if’s” can’t shake Him, then why let them take hold of you?
Pray: God lay Your mighty hands on each of our woes. Allow our eyes to see and our hearts to feel that every day has been made new by Your incredible grace and love.
~ Alexandra Dittrich