Raising his eyes toward his disciples Jesus said:
“Blessed are you who are poor,
for the Kingdom of God is yours.
Blessed are you who are now hungry,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who are now weeping,
for you will laugh.
Blessed are you when people hate you,
and when they exclude and insult you,
and denounce your name as evil
on account of the Son of Man.”
— Luke 6: 20-26
When I was first diagnosed with type one diabetes this passage really resonated with me. The three months I lived with diabetes and didn’t know it were the most difficult times of my life, or so I thought. Upon reflection on those times, I felt blessed and honored that the Lord knew that I could handle such hardship. My body, soul and spirit were abused and battered. I couldn’t imagine anything worse than the turmoil I went through… until now.
Getting diagnosed with diabetes was only the tip of the iceberg; enduring the reality of living with a chronic illness was nothing compared to what I have gone through in New York. Yesterday marked my one year anniversary of living in New York. It is hard to believe I made it to a year, it does not feel like a year but at the same time it feels like a lifetime. I am not the person I was when I boarded that plane to New York a year ago. The person I was a year ago was truly a hollow shell, surviving life without any idea of who she was, with no purpose and no passion for anything and most of all no hope.
Throughout this year I became poor, hungry, and I wept almost every day but through these pains the Lord blessed me and restored my life. “Rejoice and leap for joy on that day! Behold, your reward will be great in heaven” (Luke 6: 20-26). I have found new meaning in the Beatitudes. When I read them while struggling with diabetes, I read them without hope or joy and believed in them as a promise of happiness after death in Heaven. Today, I read them with new eyes and I can see that the Lord has blessed me with His Kingdom already. I was stripped of everything, all the comforts of home and what did I have left? I had Jesus Christ. All I have and all I want is Him. I can see the Kingdom of Heaven through the sorrows of this world. With a renewed spirit, I praise God for giving me diabetes, because that pain prepared me for the pure agony I would have to go through in New York. I can see the mastery of the Lord’s divine plan for without, lessons I learned managing diabetes I would never have survived in New York.