Hey there this is a shout out and message for my brothers and sisters in Christ who are struggling with or who have wrestled with eczema.
I’ve been really blessed in the last 2 years as I’ve been on immunosuppressants which have helped ENORMOUSLY to maintain and control my eczema. However, I went to the hospital recently and they want to do a test on me which requires me to be off my medication for a few weeks. So in the last 2 weeks or so I’ve had heaps of people asking me why my face is so red, or why I look like I’m sunburnt or had too much to drink. (xD – also the picture below doesn’t really show it because I don’t know how to turn off beauty face LOL) All this reminded me of what it was like when I had eczema at my worst. The constant pain. The social fears. The insecurities. The insomnia. The dark spiral of depression.
Inevitably eczema affects every facet of our lives, of how we see life, other people, ourselves and even God. Can I just say that even though I don’t completely understand all of your circumstances, since all of us are different, I can empathise and sympathise with you homies. I feel your pain, frustration and sadness.
From the times where you shy from photos. When you choose to stay at home avoiding people. When you wear clothing to cover your scars and exposed skin. When your friends from church ask you why you missed service. The fear of having a shower. The sleepless nights. The constant visits and disappointments from the hospitals and dermatologists. The times where you notice people’s eyes wander as they talk to you. The times where you’re afraid to look at your bed and floor. The times where you’re crushingly depressed because you feel your body is trying to fight your happiness and satisfaction constantly. The feeling when you feel like you’re becoming a different person. The feeling of not seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. The pain and rawness of crying out to God and seemingly getting no response.
I feel you fam.
You’re not alone.
If this is how you feel can I encourage you with 3 things that you may already know but are so important to remember and hold onto.
1) Our God is the God of all comfort.
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.”
– 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
Our God is not one of indifference, ignorance or sadism. Our God is one who cares for His people “who comforts us in ALL our troubles.” There is not a single trouble or affliction that God’s children cannot bring to Him. So if that is true, go to Him, cry out to Him, He hears and promises to comfort you.
“Cast all your anxieties on Him for He cares for you.”
– 1 Peter 5:7
As you pray and cry out to God, listen to Him. Read His Living Word! You have in your bible the very Words of God that He uses to comfort His people! So read and seek comfort from the One who promises to give it. In fact here’s one of the great comforts that God tells us in His Word about what the New Creation will be like :
“He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things have passed away.”
– Revelation 21:4
Every. Single. Tear.
The earlier verse from 2 Corinthians mentions that we are comforted by God “so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort that we ourselves have received from God.” This is the reason why I wrote this article. So that I, who has been comforted by God, can also comfort you with the Words of God which have comforted me.
2) Jesus is in control.
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”
– Psalm 139:13-16
God has made you exactly how He desired to make you. It’s not as if God said to me, “Oh… sorry Popo I didn’t mean to let you get eczema… I messed up…” Nothing could be further from the truth. God has lovingly, actively chosen to mold and shape you exactly as you are, including your eczema. The fact that we live in a sinful fallen and corrupted world means things like disease and illness happen but even in this context God chooses to use sin and disease for His purposes. He goes even as far as to say :
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.”
– Romans 8:28
God works through ALL things for the good of His people. There is not a SINGLE situation that God misses, forgets or overlooks. In everything, He works for the good of His people. Now at this point I have to talk about what the bible means when it uses the word “good.” Thankfully the next verse in Romans gives us the answer, that the “good” that mentioned in v28 is that His people will be conformed to the likeness of Jesus. God works through ALL things for the good of His people as He uses every single situation to make them more like Jesus. Take heart, your eczema falls in this category. Your eczema is not pointless or meaningless. God actively uses your eczema to make you more like Jesus.
3) Your identity is not found in how you look or how people see you.
“Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God – children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.”
– John 1:12
“For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by Him we cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs – heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ…”
– Romans 8:15-16
You are not defined by how you look. You are not defined by how people see you. You are not defined by how you see or feel about yourself. For those who trust and call Jesus LORD you have the great privilege of being God’s children. He does not see Popo the kid who has eczema. He sees me as one of His children. He loves His children so dearly that He Himself dwells within us! His Spirit dwells in us and conforms us to the likeness of Jesus.
Your identity is not found in how you look or how people see you but in how God sees you. You are His delight. You are His joy. You are His child.
Popo | Not a red-faced kid with eczema but a beloved child of the living God.
Cry out to God for He is the God of all comfort.
Trust that Jesus is in control. He uses all things for your good, to make you more like Jesus.
Remember that your identity is not tied to how you look or how others see you. You are a beloved child of God.
I know I’ve talked about alot of different things and maybe you’ve heard it all before. That’s fine. I just want to let you guys know that you’re not alone. I feel you homies. God has not forgotten you and He loves you dearly as His child.
If you ever want someone to talk, pray or cry with shoot me a message and I’d be happy to.
Your Brother in Christ who also struggles,