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A time for illness

 
Jimmy Cochran Columnist

  One of the more well-known passages of the Bible is found in Ecclesiastes where the writer describes that everything has a season and a purpose under heaven. “A time to plant, a time to reap; a time to be born, a time to die; a time to gain, a time to lose…” and so the list goes. God has a reason, a purpose and a season for all areas of our lives so that when the bad times come, we can know that the good times will follow. And vice versa. In their own time. In God’s own time. In His season.

  Such as I am now learning. I was in my doctor’s office this past week when he wheeled around and just bluntly told me, “Jimmy, you are now a full diabetic. No pre-diabetes, no almost there; you have Type 2 diabetes and your life will need to change. Quickly.” While not one of the horrible, tragic diseases like cancer, diabetes is one that definitely requires a change in life if I am to remain in this life to be an older man. I also have many friends who are living with this disease, but when it was my name called before the diagnosis, it hit me hard. It knocked the wind from my sails and gave me a quick sense of my own mortality. For awhile, I was lost and I’m still dealing with it. To be honest, I first thought, “Why me, God? Why me?”

  I’ve always been a healthy guy. Majoring in Education with an emphasis in Recreation and Physical Education kept me in great shape through college and for many years after. However, as I began working more and more at a desk, my activity went to a much lower level and my fitness began to slack off. Then, as I’ve aged and things creak, groan, ache and snap more often, those days of weights, sports and such have basically ceased to exist. And as the fitness dropped, my weight increased and I began to ignore the healthy eating I knew to be best for me. And so it continued until today. A week after my diagnosis, I am reading all the information I can get and have an upcoming appointment with a nutritionist and diabetic educator where I’ll plot out my lifestyle and receive my new blood sugar monitor.

  Has there been something in your life that threw you for a loop? When your first thought was to wonder why God had done this to you? The loss of a job? Maybe a disease over which you had no control?  Or, like me, a disease that is my fault and now I have to deal with it? The death of a spouse, child, family member, friend, a loved pet? So many things come across our path while we trudge through this thing called life and the only way we can handle it is with the help of God. It’s okay to grieve or be sad because the Ecclesiastes writer includes that in our seasons of life. And the Psalmist reminds us that, “weeping may last for a night, but joy will come in the morning.” So, know that your feelings are valid, but also rely on God’s promise that a new season will be coming. In God’s time. Not my time. Not your time. In God’s time.

  My God is faithful to me and He will walk with me through the next season of my life as I learn to live with diabetes. Me and God. As it should be. And when you hit those overpowering situations, please be reminded that it is only for a season. And that God will always be faithful for you.

  And for today my friends, this has been the gospel according to Jimmy (who really wants a piece of chocolate cake right now).

 

  Jimmy Cochran is a resident of McDonough, author, musician and Minister.

 

 

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