In His Good Hand

This morning I took eight and a half pills with my green smoothie, and tonight before bed I will take three more. That’s par for the course; on Mondays I add nine extra to my morning meds. I am thankful for my drugs– because of all those pills I can walk without limping, open bottles and cans without calling on my husband, and even do squats, which I have never been able to do before.


But still. That’s a lot of medication for a 34-year-old woman to take. I have rheumatoid arthritis, and without treatment I am crippled. I take pills to slow the damage, pills to slow the pain and inflammation, pills to slow the side effects of the other pills. And most days I can forget that I am, in reality, not a healthy person. I am healthier than I was 30 pounds ago, and I am healthier than I was a year ago, before I started all the meds, but I’m completely dependent on those medications to feel good and function well.

Sometimes I hate that. Today I hate it because in spite of all the drugs I don’t feel well. I took a nap at 11:30 this morning because I felt so sick. It’s hard to even describe it– I feel shaky, weak, exhausted, and kind of nauseated (although that comes and goes). It’s called malaise, and it tends to strike when it’s the biggest pain– like a day when I have to go grocery shopping and do a week’s worth of laundry. It’s a sign of inflammation in my body. And I wonder– why in the world do I take all these pills if I’m going to have days when I’m basically useless?

The truth is that before the pills, I had days like this every week. Now I have them maybe once a month. And they’re not as bad. I can still walk faster and do more than I could a year ago.

Sometimes I think that God gives me days like this to force me to slow down a little bit, and to keep my opinion of myself realistic. Sometimes I think I can do everything, but the truth is that I have a very real, chronic disease that means I can’t do everything. Sometimes I can’t do much of anything.

I’m just so foolish, you know? So dependent on myself even though I know I’m pretty much helpless. And God keeps giving me these unavoidable reminders that I need medication, I need help from my husband and kids, I need rest, and I need Him more than anything. I am a needy individual.

I am so thankful for a God who meets every one of those needs. He is good, and I can continually praise Him even when my day isn’t how I planned. Even when the thoughts of what the future may hold scare me. Even when I feel like going to bed at 7pm. He is good. And I am held in His good hand.

Pain is no measure of His faithfulness; He withholds no good thing from us ~Sara Groves


4 thoughts on “In His Good Hand

  1. i just like you, and your vulnerability, and Jesus in you… and i am on vacation, but i ind myself wanting to check in and see what your up to this writing month. and i am sorry that you have to deal with a chronic illness (i’m sorry because i do too), but i am grateful to God who is your God, and who provides all your needs.

  2. Erin, please see the book Conquering Arthritis, by Barbara Allan. She WAS completely disabled from RA, and using nutrition she completely turned her life around. You can find it on Amazon.

    Please try this option, my heart aches for your pain, because I had “regular” arthritis and this really helped me.

  3. Erin, thanks for sharing this. We are truly needy people! I too deal with a chronic disease and there are days that it’s really easy to whine and complain about the medications and how I feel but yet all I need to do is turn to God and ask for the ultimate help from our God. He is great and greatly to be praised. 🙂

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