Over the years spasms, spotty vision, vertigo spells and fluctuating blood sugar have helped to fill up my symptom list. Somewhere along the way I stopped trying to make the world see my invisible suffering. I stopped talking about the pain and discomfort associated with each new ailment. I shut the world away and went into my own personal hibernation. Silence became easier than speaking. Isolation more desirable than explanation.
In my state of human hibernation I did my best to avoid any questioning or discussions of my condition. Even the well-meaning concerns of family and friends were too much for me to handle. I didn't want to talk about what they couldn't see and I couldn't adequately describe. So I avoided all conversation. I made my visits to family functions as short as possible. I stopped attending church on Sunday mornings. I refused to see any more doctors out of an unwillingness to have to, once again, enumerate my symptoms and recount my health saga. There was so much happening beneath the surface, in my muscles and nerves, that no one could comprehend and I didn't have the energy to effectively communicate. So I simply stopped trying.
It wasn't until I reached the dead end of ineffective explanations that God gave me a new story to tell. He lifted the burden of telling the world about invisible symptoms and gave me the commission to tell the world about visible faith.
Out of all the unseen symptoms that have plagued my body God has nurtured in me a stronger belief in His perfect plan. I trust in His will. I find peace in His presence and comfort in His promises. With every new invisible aspect of my illness God has increased and strengthened a visible attribute of my faith. He has used every symptom that no one can see to cultivate a faith that can shine for His glory.
My journey of faith isn't over and the invisible symptoms might not be either. But even if a new and unexpected physical ailment seizes my body I have the assurance that God can use it to manifest something in me more important and more powerful than pain or suffering. God has, can and will use every discomfort to deepen my dependence on His Son and my faith in His perfection. I trust and believe that God will use every invisible symptom to proclaim the goodness of visible faith in my Sustainer, Lord and Savior.