This whole week, I’ve been a mess of sleepiness and snot, coughing and congestion. Basically, I’m bringing sexy back one tissue at a time. Some sicknesses are a thing to be powered through while others make me question the value of my own existence and that of everything around me, too. This time around hasn’t quite been like that, but as usual, I had some questions for The Almighty about this. The following is a transcript of our conversation this evening:
Me: Why on earth am I sick? What did you do?
God: Wow. You went straight to finger-pointing. You sure you want to do that?
Me: Can you make me better forever?
God: Can, or will?
Me: You are far too philosophical while I’m suffering. I know why this is happening, but only kind of. Why sickness?
God: Some sickness is earned. STDs or STIs are what your kind are calling them now, trying to make them sound less bad. That’s an easy example.
Me: Whelp, pretty sure that doesn’t apply to this conversation. Unless I did something with my face and sinuses that have merited some natural consequences. If I did, I sure don’t remember doing it. Did I forget to wash my hands or something?
God: The world is at enmity with you, including your body. Viruses and bacteria just love to get in there and do their thing. I’m bringing reconciliation to those things, but your body is still subject to them until the end.
Me: Until the end. How soon can that come? I get death. Death because of sin. Death. But why sickness? Why do we have to suffer even more? You made spiders and mosquitos, carbs and calories, isn’t that like, one thing too many?
God: And I made the sunshine and beaches, your friends and family. If you were Job, I would tell you that I made the leviathan, but that’s extinct now, thanks to some zealous humans. Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation?
Me: I’m supposed to grasp a point here. I have NyQuil brain, give me a minute.
God: You people are always asking, “Why, why, why?” Have you ever stopped for a minute to think that perhaps you’re asking the wrong question? How often has any explanation been good enough for your kind?
Me: Rarely. Maybe never. We’ve spent billions of dollars and I don’t know how much time trying to fix our bodies. Because being sick is the worst. Cancer and kidney stones suck. Falling apart is no fun, especially at a rate as inconsistent as it is.
God: Why will never suffice, but asking who will.
Me: I already did that by blaming you.
God: Meaning, you missed the point from the start. Imagine that.
Me: I’m assuming you’re not referring to my doctor because he just charges too much money to prescribe antibiotics for everything and that’s why germs and things are getting stronger because we just throw antibiotics at the smallest thing when we can survive without them. After we make them super strong and resistant, bacteria are going to kill us like the blob. It will be both terrifying and anticlimactic at the same time, just like those terrible movies. Did you know it was symbolic of communism?
God: That was a lot. And who’s on a soapbox now?
Me: I have so much snot in my face right now, I could die.
God: You’re not going to drown in your nasal mucus. Child, I love you. A lot. So much. I tell you every day in a thousand ways, but that doesn’t mean I’m not going to let you suffer a little here and there. Just like in all things, you’re supposed to keep your eyes on me- on Jesus when you’re sick or sad or dealing with whatever other affliction you have. When Job lost so much, he and his friends focused on his suffering and sin when they all just needed to seek me. If they’d figured that out, that book would not be nearly as long as it is. I’m not saying you’re smart, but I will say that you have too many things in your brain before me, including for the moment, your light momentary affliction. Now go to sleep. The NyQuil and I both command you to.
And with that, my eyelids are heavy, though I slept most of the evening after leaving the office. Pray that I sleep through the night and awake feeling better in the morning, with one fewer existential crisis on my mind.