Do I have a thorn in the flesh?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by evangelist6589, Dec 7, 2012.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Messages:
    8,369
    Likes Received:
    105
    I had a out of pocket dental expense of $1,000. I had it saved, but when I went to the dentist they discovered something else, and I have to pay another $1,000 next month. Without credit cards I would be doomed, so thankfully I will get the services I need and also reward points. However the big problem is my annual student loans, and CC debts which is almost 3 times my income. I have worked much overtime and done all that I can to pay what I can, however the income is the problem. I have tried finding a better paying position but my skills are lacking, and the lack of opportunities in the present economy is not the best. My skills seem to translate to jobs paying up to $30,000 a year for the most part. Transferable job skills, adaptive job skills, and such may not mean as much as they did in the past when the economy was stronger, or when I was living in a different part of the country.

    Hearing a sermon recently by a pastor it would appear my financial debts is a thorn, and not a trial. Everyone has a different thorn, but mine appears to be this. What do you say? Erwin Lutzer just suggested I pay what I can as thats the best that can be done until God opens the door to a better paying job.
     
  2. Mexdeaf

    Mexdeaf
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    Messages:
    7,051
    Likes Received:
    0
    Bills are a fact of life, not a thorn.

    There are thorns given by God and then there are self-inflicted ones.

    I'll be praying for your needs to be met.

    I would avoid using the plastic at all cost.
     
  3. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Messages:
    8,369
    Likes Received:
    105
    Thanks for your prayers. I had to use the plastic or I would not be given the vital medical attention I need, which would have some very serious consequences in my situation.
     
  4. Mexdeaf

    Mexdeaf
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    Messages:
    7,051
    Likes Received:
    0
    Believe me, I understand. Been there, done that, did not get the t-shirt.

    But do whatever it takes to extricate yourself from that position and to stay out of it. I work three part-time jobs as well as pastor so I don't ever have to be in that position again, God willing!
     
  5. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    Messages:
    4,439
    Likes Received:
    0
    When Paul talked about the thorn in the flesh it was not something that he did to himself. It was a messenger of Satan sent to keep a check on his pride. I am not sure that financial debts can be put in the same category.
     
  6. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Messages:
    8,369
    Likes Received:
    105
    Many different interpretations as the sermon I heard said anything could be that.
     
  7. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2010
    Messages:
    8,369
    Likes Received:
    105
    Extra part time jobs? I have considered it, however it would be very difficult to see my family, or be involved in the church unless one opened that fit my schedule and available time to work.

    However a friend told me about jobs at IBM and some other companies that have training programs so perhaps I could get trained to get a better paying job without taking on student loans. That is the answer.
     
  8. Mexdeaf

    Mexdeaf
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2005
    Messages:
    7,051
    Likes Received:
    0
    I do hope IBM works out for you, but in case it doesn't or in the meantime, here's a few suggestions:

    Have you donated plasma? There is pretty good money in that and it only takes a couple hours a time, which you can spend reading- or sleeping.

    Newspaper route? Early in the morning. Hard work, but good money if you provide good service.

    Cleaning doctor's offices? Lots of opportunities there if you're willing to work late.

    I've done all those things and still maintained time with my family and active church life.
     
  9. annsni

    annsni
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    May 30, 2006
    Messages:
    20,198
    Likes Received:
    376
    I don't believe that self-inflicted wounds count as a thorn in the side.

    Honestly, I've seen you post a bit about your debt and honestly, it was unwise choices that got you there. $90,000 in credit card debt is very foolish and needs to be addressed immediately. For me, it would mean living on austerity until I could get it paid off and most likely 2-3 jobs. If it meant that I couldn't be involved in church all the time or see my family (you do not have children so adults can deal with it), so be it. I'd do what I would have to do to be a faithful steward to what God has blessed me with. There are people I know who are able to live on very little by choice because they just have a different view of "stuff" than many others do. "Necessities" are in the eye of the beholder. You really need to get your finances in order and stop making excuses.
     
  10. righteousdude2

    righteousdude2
    Expand Collapse
    Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Messages:
    10,468
    Likes Received:
    138
    Funny you mentioned this...

    ...I wondered about this very thing for years, as my physical health declined due to neuropathy, and degenerative disc disease (resulting in a laminectomy of L2 through S-1 with fusion and hardware in 1991).

    The continued pain and suffering led me into a state of depression, and my involvement with the name-it-claim-it churches who prayed for my healing and then rebuked me for having hidden sin [because their prayers didn't result in healing] caused me to lose faith and make a rapid exit from that line of fellowship.

    Still, I had to wonder about the "thorn" of sufferering I seemed to maintain in my flesh, and it wasn't until [and mind you I had read this text and taught and preached on this text many times] I was reading 2 Corinthians 12, particularily, verses 5 through 8, that a light went on within me and the Spirit asked me, "Are you better than the Apostle Paul?" In fact, he asked me that a few times before I could find the answer, and the answer led me to finally accept the thorn and seek God [not for healing of the pain and removal of the thorn] but for strength and ability to work around the thorn.

    I received this request, and went on to write my second book, Thorn Daze: The Painful Truth About Prosperity Teaching. It is my number-one selling book.

    Like another person told you, credit card debt wasn't a thorn, but, sometimes we have circumstances in life that continue to press down on our financial situation, and dwarfs our abilities to earn the kind of money needed to ride the wave on through the stormy seas, with comfort and not see our bank account drained at every turn in life.

    This is a good question that you ask, and I have to ask you what the spirit asked me. Do you see yourself as being better than the Apostle Paul? Do you think your life warrants special treatment that goes beyond the treatment Paul received?

    Like Paul and myself, you may not be able to overcome the situations that seem to drain you financially from time-to-time, but once you accept the fact that God will provide; you will be able to overcome and work through the trials.

    I still have bouts with severe pain [like nearly every night], but I am not about to let my pain rule me any longer. I am going to move beyond the pain, and do what I can with His strength, for He did tell me that I could do ALL things through Christ, who strengthens me. And it is that strength that I've discovered since I stopped feeling sorry for myself, and letting the pain keep me out of the game. Sure I work at half the speed I did just thirty years ago, but the fact is I still can do things for Him and others and the Kingdom, so for that I praise his glorious name.

    You will find a way past this; I promise you, just have faith to look to Him and tell the devil that you are rich in ways he [the devil] can never touch.

    Shalom!
     

Share This Page

Loading...