Seven Things Sickness Wants to Take From You

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Sickness is evil. . .so how can evil come from God?

We never see God introduce it in the Bible.  We only see it show up after Satan comes into the picture.

There are some well-meaning and devoted Christians who feel it is a cross God wants us to bear, I just can’t find that backed up with scripture. 

James 1:17 says:

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning."

According to Strong’s Concordance the Greek word for good is G18 and it means:

“of good constitution or nature; useful, salutary; good, pleasant, agreeable, joyful, happy, excellent, distinguished”

Also, according to Strong’s Concordance the Greek word for gift is G1394 and it means:

“giving, gift”

It does not make sense that our Heavenly Father would consider cancer, diabetes, heart trouble or any other sickness or affliction to be a useful, good, pleasant, joyful, happy, excellent gift for us?

Now He can step in and make good out of our afflictions, but I can’t find scripture that says He is inflicting it on us.

In Matthew 7:9-11 in the Amplified Bible we read:

“Or what man is there of you, if his son asks him for a loaf of bread, will hand him a stone?

Or if he asks for a fish, will hand him a serpent?

If you then, evil as you are, know how to give good and advantageous gifts to your children, how much more will your Father Who is in heaven [perfect as He is] give good and advantageous things to those who keep on asking Him!”

Even though the last two scriptures do no indicate that God planned for us to be sick, you have people use this next scripture about Paul’s thorn to show God’s approval of sickness to keep us humble?

2 Corinthians 12:7-10 says:

“And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure.”

No doubt Paul had an abundance of revelations.  But the Lord did not teach humility through sickness.

1 Peter 5:6 in the New Living Translation It says:

“So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor.”

As we submit ourselves to God. . .He wants to exalt us but in His timing and under His guidance. 

Remember, God exalted Joshua in the eyes of the people in Joshua 3:7.

Acts 5:13 in the Amplified Bible says:

“And none of those who were not of their number dared to join and associate with them, but the people held them in high regard and praised and made much of them.”

Now let’s look at 2 Corinthians 12:7 again this time in the Amplified Bible which says:

“And to keep me from being puffed up and too much elated by the exceeding greatness (preeminence) of these revelations, there was given me a thorn (a splinter) in the flesh, a messenger of Satan, to rack and buffet and harass me, to keep me from being excessively exalted.”

It’s important to note what follows “thorn in the flesh”. . .the next phrase is separated by commas highlighting it’s importance where it says:  “thorn in the flesh” COMMA “the messenger of Satan to buffet me.”

According to Strong’s Concordance the Greek word for messenger is G32 and it means:

“a messenger, envoy, one who is sent”

The thorn is not sickness. . .not a thing. . .but rather a messenger. . .a demon. . .sent by Satan determined to keep Paul from exalting God and doing the things he was called to do.

There is so much more to 2 Corinthians 12:7-10 but that will be the subject of another teaching on a different day.

Here’s what we know. . .God did not put sickness on Paul. . .but rather it was a messenger from Satan.

Just confirming sickness is not, never has been and never will be God’s best for our lives.  It’s also important for us to realize that sickness actually steals from us.

1.      Sickness steals time.

When you’re sick. . .you lose time in school. . .on the job or around the house.  This is time that you’ll never be able to recover and your productivity is either reduced or eliminated.

If you’re fighting an allergy or common cold. . .oftentimes you’re not full speed. . .you’re not maximizing your performance.  Infirmity. . .steals your time.

Time, once spent or stolen, . . .can never be replaced.

Have you ever had the misfortune of waiting and waiting and waiting for your Doctor’s appointment?

Not long ago, I had to wait for nearly an hour past my scheduled appointment time.  At that point in time, I was recuperating from cancer. I was spending a minimum of a morning every day in the week of follow up activities.   That’s time I will never be able to get back.

What’s the best way to overcome sickness?  Take two aspirins, drink plenty of liquids and get a lot of sleep.  Sound familiar?  It’s a common answer I’ve heard most of my life.

However, I think Henry Miller, the American author, was onto something when he said:

“Nine-tenths of our sickness can be prevented by right thinking plus right hygiene - nine-tenths of it!”

Sickness can be prevented by right thinking. . .it’s called knowing the Word of God.

James 5:15 is another scripture that embraces the thought that God wants us well … not sick:

“And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.”

Seems like the Word of God is the best preventive to sickness you’ll ever experience.

2.      Sickness steals joy.

You might want to remember or even write down the following sentence.

Live today, plan for tomorrow but don’t let worry and anxiety steal your joy.

Matthew 6:34 in The Living Bible says:

“Jesus said, “So, don’t be anxious about tomorrow. God will take care of your tomorrow too. Live one day at a time”

We need to give our attention. . .to what God is and wants to be doing in our lives right now. . .even in the midst of an attack on our health.

Matthew 6:34 in the Message Bible says:

"Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don't get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”

If we’re giving attention to what God is doing right now. . .then we will not allow the devil to steal our joy while we’re in the middle of the battle.

Many people get discouraged when they realize it will take a long time or be a long battle toward recovery. The scripture tells us we are given enough strength for a day. 

If we begin piling on all the worries of our tomorrows we’ll be too burdened to carry the weight of today.

Remember, the Lord will never leave you nor forsake you as it says in Hebrews 13:5 but God is the Great I AM… not the great I will be.  He will carry us through what is happening right now.   

Nehemiah 8:10 tells us the Joy of the Lord is our strength.

The enemy will use sickness and every other weapon to steal our joy but he can’t unless we allow him to do so.

3.      Sickness steals hope.

With sickness. . .the enemy wants to steal your hope.  The loss of hope makes a person feel that sickness or disease. . .is all they have to look forward to.

If we allow the enemy to steal our hope. . .he will take our joy and peace with him as well.  But more importantly, when he steals our hope. . .he keeps us from being overflowed with the power of the Holy Spirit.

Romans 15:13 in the New Living Translation says:

“I pray that the God who gives hope will fill you with much joy and peace while you trust in him. Then your hope will overflow by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

The great thief wants to leave us disappointed, depressed and discouraged in the midst of our medical adversity.

Romans 15:13 in the Amplified Bible says:

“May the God of your hope so fill you with all joy and peace in believing [through the experience of your faith] that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound and be overflowing (bubbling over) with hope.”

The enemy wants to steal our hope which is based on God’s promises found in the Word of God.

Psalm 130:5 in the New Living Translation says:

“I am counting on the Lord; yes, I am counting on him. I have put my hope in his word.”

Always remember, no matter the situation. . .there is only one place where you need to place your hope.

Psalm 39:7 in the New Living Translation says:

“And so, Lord, where do I put my hope? My only hope is in you.”

When you put your hope in the Lord. . .it should never be your last resort.

Psalm 25:5 in the New Living Translation says:

“Lead me by your truth and teach me, for you are the God who saves me. All day long I put my hope in you.”

Your hope will remove all the doubts of the enemy.

Psalm 94:19 in the New Living Translation says:

“When doubts filled my mind, your comfort gave me renewed hope and cheer.”

The world doesn’t give you true hope. . .but the Word of God does.

Your hope in Him empowers you with the confidence of His protection.

Job 11:18 in the New Living Translation says:

“Having hope will give you courage. You will be protected and will rest in safety.”

Steadfast hope in Him will bring its own reward to you.

Proverbs 23:18 in the New Living Translation says:

“You will be rewarded for this; your hope will not be disappointed.”

So the question is. . .how do we develop and strengthen our hope in God?

Romans 15:13 in the Amplified Bible says:

“May the God of your hope so fill you with all joy and peace in believing [through the experience of your faith] that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound and be overflowing (bubbling over) with hope.”

God is the source of our hope. . .and our hope is supplied and empowered by the Holy Spirit. . .even in the face of seemingly overwhelming odds.

A review of these scriptures helps us to understand why the enemy is happy when sickness steals our hope.

4.      Sickness steals money.

The enemy not only wants to steal your health. . .he wants to take you out physically and financially.

Some years ago, there were times my husband spent every morning of the week in one doctor’s office or another.  I went with him for moral support.  But that not only meant medical bills but we were not in our store to oversee any problems that came up.

Thanks to our great staff, I’m sure we were covered but it put an extra strain on everyone involved. 

I was blessed to have Medicare and a Medicare supplemental in place but every time we use insurance money, costs go up.  Government taxes go up to cover the use.

And if you want to look at it in another light, all the time and money that was spent during the affliction took away from the time we used to do ministry and the other outreaches we gave to with our personal support.

Make no mistake about it, the enemy uses sickness to rob you of your health, wealth and ability to make a difference for the kingdom.

In Luke 13:16, Jesus tells us the reason a woman was bound for 18 years:

“Then should not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen long years, be set free on the Sabbath day from what bound her?”

Scripture tells us that if anyone is behind sickness and disease it is not God.

5.      Sickness steals energy.

When the enemy steals your energy. . .your get up and go. . .he also gets your effectiveness and creates a feeling of uselessness in you.

That’s why it’s important for us to tap into the ultimate energy source. . .the Holy Spirit.

Interestingly enough, the Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary defines energy as:

“dynamic quality, useable power” and, are you ready for this, “positive spiritual force.”

That’s right. . .energy is defined in the secular dictionary as a positive spiritual force.

It’s not only our energy the enemy wants but the positive spiritual force that guides our lives.

Proverbs 3:23-26 in The Living Bible says:

“They keep you safe from defeat and disaster and from stumbling off the trail.  With them on guard you can sleep without fear; you need not be afraid of disaster or the plots of wicked men, for the Lord is with you; he protects you.”

The enemy wants to steal our energy because he knows where it comes from.

1 Peter 4:11 in the New Living Translation says:

“Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen.” 

How do we keep plugged into our energy source even in the midst of adversity?  Seven words.  READ YOUR BIBLE. . .DO WHAT IT SAYS.

Proverbs 3:21 in The Living Bible says:

“Have two goals: wisdom—that is, knowing and doing right—and common sense. Don’t let them slip away, for they fill you with living energy and bring you honor and respect.”  

The Word of God. . .gives us a living energy which neither sickness, the devil or anything or anyone else can ever steal.

6.      Sickness steals dreams.

When you’re sick. . .overcoming a disease attack of the enemy. . .when it seems like healing will never come. . .you’ve got to know the enemy is after your dreams. . .your potential for future success.

I’ve heard some people say over the years. . .in describing a sickness say:  “I’m so tired of fighting this. . .I think I’d rather just give up and go on home to be with Jesus.”

I’ve never walked in those shoes. . .so it’s difficult for me to put myself there. 

After my husband went through the adversities with his health over the last 7 years, I can see how insidious the enemy is about trying to wear you down day in and day out. 

It is a battle but God doesn’t put us in the battle without giving us what we need to win.  

The enemy sought to slow us down physically, curb our effectiveness in running the Christian Soldier Bookstore as well as impact the outreach we’ve had around the world through our ministry.

Overcoming all adversity falls back on how much we rely on God and His Word and not fall into the traps the world sets for us.

There is a strong need to know what the Word of God says. 

But that is not enough.  You must then put the Word of God to work to overcome the enemy attacks.

When you begin to dream about the promises of God . . .things begin to change. . .and the first change is within you.

Remember, nothing will change until you do.  Our dreams take us places beyond our current reality.

We need to accept temporary mistakes, detours and disappointments as just that, temporary.

How do you overcome obstacles? 

Psalm 34:19 in the New Century Version says:

“People who do what is right may have many problems, but the Lord will solve them all.”

One other thing. . .I feel stirred to say.  There are people who are dealing with and have dealt with physical afflictions for years. . .they’ve been in a constant battle physically and emotionally because of attacks from the enemy.

We need to pray for those who have endured to be endued with a fresh presence, peace and power of the Holy Spirit.

Remember, praying for others this way. . .releases the promises of Ephesians 6:8 and James 5:16 into your life. 

7.      Sickness steals love.

We have an enemy who not only attacks us physically. . .but spiritually as well.  He attacks us in all the six major areas of our lives.

Spiritual, family, financial, physical, mental and social.

John 10:10 in the Amplified Bible says:

“The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).”

When the enemy brings sickness. . .and the attack is intense. . .it strains relationships.

The enemy is not only after your health. . .he’s after your marriage. . .those you love and who love you.  I’m blessed because my marriage is strong.  But there are marriages which are already shaky and the added stress of care, cost and inconvenience can strain them to the breaking point.

Be aware the enemy will speak thoughts not only into your mind but those who love you seeking to contradict the Word of God. . .while playing off our insecurities. . .creating miscommunication and trouble.

He’s a liar. . .the father of lies and the truth is not in him.

The miscommunication between loved ones will create misdirection all which are directed by the mischief of the enemy.

In sickness. . .he wants to steal your health. . .kill your dreams. . .and destroy your relationships with those you loved.

Hold fast to the confession of the Word and remember the devil is a liar and he doesn’t want you experiencing the fullness of John 10:10 which in the New Living Translation says:

“. . .My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.”

God is for you … never against you.  Romans 8:31