Good morning brothers and sisters. For today’s communion, let turn to the book of 2 Corinthians 12: 7-10
To keep me from becoming conceited because of these surpassingly great revelations,there was given me a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.“ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
I believe most have read this passage before especially the older Christian. Ever wonder what is this ‘thorn in the flesh’ referring to? As I prepare for this communion, I read that some suggested it is referring to some unexplained suffering, pain or affliction. It could be emotional pain, physical pain like diseases and so on.
When I think about my life, I think the ‘thorn’ God gives me is called ‘Thalasemmia’. It is a type of inherited blood disorder. Because this is passed down from my parent, there is no cure for it. Actually there is, it is by undergo bone marrow transplant but that cost RM 350k but my bank account does not have even RM 35k 🙂 Normal red blood cell has 120 days life span while Thalasemmia red blood cell has only 90 days life span. People with thalassemia also easily fatigue because the body make less hemoglobin and have fewer circulating red blood cells than normal, which results in mild or severe anemia.
But thank God that mine is minor Thalasemia that I can still play my favorite sport like football. But sometimes, I do find life challenging especially right now I am venturing into health industry by sharing to people the benefits of nutrition and recommending health products for them. It is challenging because even I might have the knowledge, people also look at me outwardly, how healthy and energetic am I. But even, after I have made the changes in my diet and certain lifestyle, I can never able to remove this Thalasemia in my blood.
Just like Paul pleaded to God for his thorn to be removed, I also wish that God can remove this Thalasemia but I know this is impossible. I guess I just gotta continue to do what I can while rely and surrender to God of my career. Maybe this Thalasemia is the thorn that God put in my life so that I can constantly rely on Him, just like God did to Paul.
Brothers and sisters, God might also gives you a thorn. Each individual might have their own thorn. Let’s continue to rely to God because God’s grace is sufficient for us, for His power is made perfect in weakness.
As the bread and wine to pass around, let’s mediate on the cross, God’s grace and his love for us.
1 Corinthians 11: 23
For I received from the Lord what I also passed on to you: The Lord Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, took bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, “This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 25 In the same way, after supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood; do this, whenever you drink it, in remembrance of me.” 26 For whenever you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.