What in the world do insense and friendship have to do with each other? If you are isolated during chronic illness, there are alternatives to get us through. As always, with Jesus at our side, sometimes carrying us through illness, He provides the most interesting ways to fill the emptiness of isolation.
Today started with this Bible verse and it all just went wild, taking twists and turns I have not thought of before.
“9 Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart, and the pleasantness of a friend springs from their heartfelt advice. The Lord will provide for our needs.” ~ Proverbs 27:9 NIV
Our needs are tremendous during chronic illness
No doubt, our needs are far greater than we ever imagined possible when we are chronically ill.
God already knew this would happen to us and He already has His perfect provisions in place for our needs.
Done deal, He has our back!!
Friendship during chronic illness
Some people will remain in your lives during chronic illness, others will vamoose faster than lightning. It weeds out the sincerity of people very quickly. It can be hurtful, for a time, but in hindsight, it truly is a blessing.
Ouch, that hurts when we are still living in the hurt-filled stage of that process. It will pass as we embrace the eternal value and not “flattering” lips that are shallow and meaningless.
As the years of chronic illness click on, the more and more friends and family may disappear. If this happens, don’t panic like I did, embrace it. In time the situation will look different. In time we will learn new ways to obtain & maintain healthy relationships so that we receive “the pleasantness of a friend springs from their heartfelt advice.”
For those of you who already have this, treasure it. Acknowledge the blessing, feed it so it feeds you. Enjoy every moment of it. Feel the “perfume” of this precious friendship.
Some of us have been so sick for so many years and homebound, isolated, and void of valuable relationships that we have to dig a bit deeper to fill that gap.
Pity parties are allowed for a time if you must (I sure did). When we are ready, step up and see what God has to offer. He already knows of the tremendous need in our lives. And He comes up with some interesting twists that I would never think of.
Where do insense fit in?
God is awesome. As we read the Bible He gives us different things to explore at different times in our lives.
Perfume and incense bring joy to the heart…
This is where it all just fascinates me. I already have established a lifestyle that includes perfume and incense. Today this took on greater meaning for me.
Perfume, to ME, means essential oils. In history, we can establish that “perfume” started with essential oils without chemicals. Many people while on a health journey find their way to essential oils. When we are so ill, we cannot continue wearing or be around the chemicals of commercial perfumes so we find a healthy alternative.
Essential oils, for me, creates a sweet scent of “perfume” that I enjoy. They also have tremendous health advantages that move me through healing faster.
Incense, for me, is NOT about worshiping anything but God Himself. Insense seems to have a bad rap because they have been used outside the context intended in the Bible.
Incense can be a simple “joy to the heart.” In the morning when I use my incense, I “cover” myself with the sent, the joy, the thoughts of God covering me for the day. Just that simple, I keep it about God and my relationship with Him, nothing more.
Ointment and perfume rejoice the heart
“Meaning not the holy anointing oil for sacred use, or the perfume or incense offered on the altar of incense; but common oil or ointment used at entertainments, poured on the heads of the guests; and incense in censing of rooms, which were very delightful, pleased the senses, and so exhilarated the heart.” ~ Bible Study Tools, Proverbs 27:9
Practical application of incense
I do not use it daily because I don’t honestly even think about it daily. That allows this NOT to become legalistic.
When I do use incense, it is in the morning while I am measuring out my natural medicines and taking my morning dose of supplements. When I do use the incense, I not only find joy in it but I find a sweet moment with the Lord.
I end up talking to the Lord about my health and want to heal through Him, not the medicines I take.
I also seek insight from the Holy Spirit to provide wisdom in my choices of natural medicine so that I am not wasteful or hurting myself with anything.
I praise God during this time because I know with all my heart, He has already determined the perfect plan for my life. It happens to include the path of chronic illness and healing and I chose to embrace His path for my life.
During all of this, I take my natural medicines/supplements and move on to the next part of my morning. I feel covered in the Lord’s tremendous love He has for His children. I feel His provision for the day.
Perfume and incense in the Bible
There are many references to each but today I am focusing in on Proverbs 27:9. Dig deeper, learn more, enjoy God’s Word.
Overview of Proverbs by Chuck Swindoll – Audio and Text – FREE
Living the Proverbs: Insights for the Daily Grind by Chuck Swindoll – Paperback Book
Maribeth Baxter, MBNC (Certified Mind-Body Nourishment Coach)
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