My Strange Relationship with God

Last night was horrible. I woke up in the middle of the night and suddenly felt pain in my tummy. This pain kept me up for about an hour. During this time, as I lied in bed, I kept thinking about what could possibly be wrong with me. I have been coughing like a madman, so I’ve been taking codeine linctus. Of course, too much codeine can cause liver damage, so perhaps this is the problem. Another possibility was an overdose of protein powder, which does damage to your liver and kidneys. I normally drink a scoop of protein powder just before I go to bed.

Regardless of what caused this pain, I suddenly felt vulnerable. This was how easy it was to be struck down with a serious illness. What will happen to me? Will I be on dialysis for the rest of my life? Is this punishment from God because I have become too proud and arrogant? Is this God’s reminder to me that He is in control of my life? My mind was then filled with thoughts of dying alone. I was actually afraid of dying alone, and I suddenly thought about the girl I’m currently dating, and I felt a desire to be with her for the rest of my life. At least then I’d have someone to look after me if I ever had a debilitating kidney or liver problem. I’d have someone to caress me while I was sick. I didn’t want to be discarded in the corner of some hospital all by myself.

Feeling alone in the dark, by myself, with my thoughts, and with incredible pain in my belly, I actually started praying, as I always do when disaster strikes. It seems to be a predictable pattern: disaster strikes, I turn to God, He saves me, and I turn away again.

And just like clockwork, when I woke up today, the pain was gone. It was a Monday, and I dragged myself to work. Having had insufficient sleep, I trudged through the day feeling depressed, wishing five o’clock would finally arrive. I deliberately chose to do easy work because I was drowsy. I made a few mistakes at work. I don’t think my manager is happy with me. There are times when he has confidence in me because I do work hard and try my best, but a good reputation can be destroyed so easily. It is embarrassing. Sometimes I feel like jumping off a cliff because I am so ashamed of my incompetence. I honestly don’t know how I even got my job or how I even keep it. I sometimes get the feeling that it was a mistake or a fluke that I am even employed. But maybe not. I do remember, during the last year of university, I was job hunting, and I hated it. I was stressed out with interviews and writing resumes. I prayed to God. I asked Him to give me the job of my dreams and if He did, I promised I would sponsor a child on World Vision. I got that dream job and hence five years later I still sponsor a child on World Vision.

I suppose this is why I am so grateful for being employed, why I try to work so hard, and why I save money so aggressively. I feel as if I don’t deserve anything. I don’t deserve any of the money I earn. I don’t deserve the health I have. I don’t deserve the job I have. That is why I must constantly go to the gym, why I must eat healthy, why I must save up as much as possible. I know that, just as God can give me everything I have, He can take it all back with the flick of a finger. And I need to be prepared for that. This is why I am always on edge, why I stay away from debt, stay away from a large mortgage, and refrain from committing to a long-term relationship or to getting married. This is why I am a commitment phobe. How can you commit to anything if the future is so uncertain?

I don’t even consider myself religious. I don’t tell people I am religious, and yet God is so real to me when there is trouble in my life.

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