Tuesday, September 27, 2011


During a writer’s conference, we heard a beautifully-crafted poem about grief and how it lessens in power over time. For a reason I can’t fathom, it reminded me of hot flashes. For another reason I can’t fathom, I shared my thoughts about it with the 120 attendees. They laughed, of course, but I felt as if I had jumped into deep water. I should have stayed there, to relieve the heat from my obviously-red face. “Don’t go near the edge,” my mom used to tell me. I should have remembered her advice.



The goldenrod causes me to sneeze and rub my eyes and squirm in bed from overall itching frenzies. I had a sneezing fit on the way to church one Sunday. As usual, I coughed for two hours afterwards. Disrupting the service, I wanted to shout, “No, I don’t have bronchitis. It’s allergies.”

Perhaps you suffer more discomfort than I. Allergies are a bane of the living. The symptoms are sometimes so uncomfortable they keep people from accomplishing what’s important in their lives. Let’s face it. How can we drive a long distance after taking a sleep-enhancing allergy pill? Or feel like going to work when our bodies ache? Food allergies can be worse than uncomfortable. They can be life-threatening. Of course, the best remedy is to avoid the food causing the symptoms.

I believe some people are allergic to God. In fact, evidence of their symptoms is everywhere. For instance, there’s the guy who squirms when you mention the name Jesus in the holy sense. His mind and soul itch to avoid the subject altogether.

There’s the woman who avoids facing the perceived discomfort of God’s truth about her life by filling her days and hours with activities. And there’s the person who constantly runs from one place to another trying to avoid God—just like someone who moves to another climate to avoid uncomfortable allergens. The same applies to people who seek harmful pleasures such as excessive alcohol, drugs, or pornography.

Remember Jonah’s story? He tried running away from God and got into deep water. Pardon the pun. Peter denied Christ by lying and running away. Paul fought back with self-righteous persecution of the new Jesus-followers.

The remedy for spiritual allergic symptoms is as simple as accepting Jesus’ forgiveness and salvation. His gift brings not only the promise of eternal life, it brings healing of our body, soul, and spirit as well as indescribable peace and joy. We no longer have to run away from Him or fill our hours with meaningless pursuits.

Jesus says, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:28-29)

There’s no need to suffer from allergic reactions to God and His Son, Jesus. He wants you to be whole, symptom-free of all the discomforts you suffer in body, soul, and spirit.

Lord, thank You for Your perfect remedy against the allergens we face, perceive, or suffer. Help us to go to You for perfect health, thereby drawing others to You. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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