The God Who Cares about Skin Irritation


Matt. 6:31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?
Matt. 6:32 (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.

Editors note:  This is meant to be a contrast with my post earlier this week what My anxiety tells people about God.  While the first post speaks towards of our responses to great needs (God cannot meet them) this one discusses smaller needs (this cannot be important to God).

About a month ago while getting out of the shower one morning I noticed some red marks up and down the inside of my left arm.  I didn’t really bother me at first (just thought it was heat rash) but then the spots showed up on my right arm, and began developing on the back of both hands.  Most of the time it didn’t cause discomfort, but when I sweat the rashes seemed to itch and become inflamed.

God in His wisdom has created me with as a very strong-willed (stubborn) person.  This character trait gives the determination to succeed on the mission field, but it also means that I never..ever ask for help. So of course instead of asking for assistance with the rash or going to the doctor I just decided to “wait it out.”  Even after the rash continued to grow on my legs and upper part of my chest I didn’t do anything about it.

Finally Monday morning while working on sermons I noticed the red spots looking darker than usual and swallowing my pride, went to the local clinic.  It only took about five-minutes for the nurse to tell me it wasn’t an infection, but an allergic reaction to the kind of soap I had been using.  After switching brands and using some Hydrocortisone my rash has healed considerably.   

Much of our needs are like that skin irritation, you know it’s not a serious problem so it is ignored while the more  “pressing needs” of life are dealt with.  So we keep pushing it back over and over till finally it demands to be dealt with.  Even more dangerous than this procrastinating though is the way these needs affect our relationship with God.

Whether consciously or subconsciously we organize our needs into different groups.  Group A is the big needs we need help with, Group B is the one that we can take care of ourselves.  In a way this is healthy since we can deal with most of life’s drama on our own, but it’s also unhealthy because we only ask God for help with the bigger things.

In other words we come to God with our daily needs and say; “okay Father today I will need help with this, and this, and oh this need right here.  But don’t worry I’ve got everything else covered!”

This may seem like humility but in reality it’s an act of rebellion because we (I) tell God what parts of my life need help and what parts don’t.  Even worse we act as if the smaller needs of life don’t matter to God even though Scripture tells us we are His children.

My mother texted me this afternoon and immediately asked why I hadn’t told her and dad about my skin rash.  I told her it wasn’t serious and her exact response was “you share everything!” (exclamation point added).  Her point was as my parents they wanted to know EVERY need in my life even if it was having to change the type of soap I used because I developed a rash.  And in the same way my loving father is offended when I say “oh this isn’t important enough for you to know about I can handle it.”

Does this mean we panic over the small needs of life?  Of course not!  However we can rest in the fact that our father delights when we bring to Him our skin irritations along with the pressing needs of life.

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