Autoimmune Diseases and Loving Yourself

Category: Uncategorized

We hear the word, “autoimmune” a lot these days. You can’t miss all the TV ads for drugs that fight autoimmune diseases, or you learn a friend is diagnosed with Lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. Autoimmune problems are becoming an acceptable part of modern life.

So what exactly is an autoimmune disease? Simply put, in every case, it is the body attacking the body because the person is attacking themselves through negative thoughts and feelings. Or, for a simple medical definition: conflict causes the white corpuscles to attack living flesh and destroy it, because it sees the living flesh as the invading enemy.

There is a spiritual dynamic also; the white corpuscles are invisibly redirected to attack living tissue while ignoring the true enemy which is bacteria and viruses. As the person continues to attack him or herself spiritually, the body finally agrees and the white corpuscles start attacking the body.

Why would a body attack itself? Thoughts and feelings of not being loved, not being accepted, self-rejection, self-hatred and bitterness coupled with guilt are the fuel. In fact, it could be said that autoimmune diseases are primarily self-hatred diseases with a fear-anxiety-stress rider attached to them.

Let’s look at an example: a beautiful young woman discovers her husband of three years is having an affair. She was so in love and his infidelity crushes her. How could he betray her this way? The rejection she feels turns to self-loathing. Obviously, there is something lacking in her that prevented her husband from being faithful. It’s all her fault.

In her heart, she tells herself all kinds of lies about herself and who she is. She blames herself, accuses, finds fault with herself in every way. She may hate her own body for not being thin enough, or maybe her skin isn’t perfect, or her hair isn’t blonde or long, or silky. Whatever the comparison she makes, she falls short. She is not loving herself for who she is. And what of the fear that if she forgives him, maybe he’ll do it again?

This example merely scratches the surface of reasons why autoimmune disorders thrive. But the good news is, if we know the problem is self against self, we can do something about it. We can search our hearts, asking God to show us the truth. We can start in small ways to love ourselves. To honor and respect who God created us to be. To stop taking blame for things that aren’t ours.

Again, we see the importance of 2 Cor. 10:5 where we are admonished to “take our thoughts captive.” That is, if they aren’t God-thoughts, we shouldn’t be entertaining them. And the good news is all throughout scripture, God tells us that we are “fearfully and wonderfully made,” that He loves us with an everlasting love and we are the “apple of his eye.” If He thinks of us this way, then this is how we should think our ourselves.

My prayer for you: Father God please help us to see ourselves the way you see us. Help us to choose to rise above life’s circumstances, and to grab hold of Your truth that we are loved and accepted by You. What more do we need? Each day, let more of Your light and truth into our hearts. We want to agree with what You say with all our hearts. Thank you and Amen.

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