Chronic Illness / Faith

Highs and Lows

I was going to title this blog, “The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly” but I’m pretty sure I’ve already used that title. There’s a lot of good, bad, and ugly in my life, but God uses it all. I’m so thankful!

So highs and lows. The low this week has been my body purging itself of parasites, toxins, and all manner of disgusting things. I’ll spare you the gruesome details, but let’s just say it hasn’t been fun. But, as you’ve heard me say before, it’s productive misery. I’m a little bit healthier because of all the nasty things that are no longer in me.

I try not to give too many details on my blog because I don’t want to gross you out. When I talk with others who live with illness, we can talk freely – not much grosses us out. I sometimes forget that everyone doesn’t have our same tolerance level for health related discussions. Sorry about that!

But I just have to tell you how God provided for me this week. On Monday I had a Zoom call with Michelle Medlock Adams of Platinum Literary Services. I hired her to critique my latest children’s book and she was going to give me her thoughts on our call.

I was so excited to hear what she thought, but about a minute before our call, my stomach started to grumble. Uh-oh. This isn’t good! Thankfully Michelle and I are friends so I knew if I had to send her a message and delay a few minutes, she would understand. But I really wanted to be professional and make the meeting on time.

I unlocked my phone to send her a message as I hurried to the bathroom. Lo and behold, I had a message from her saying she would have to push our meeting back by 15 minutes because her computer decided to do updates.

Praise God!

I was a little excited after hearing great feedback on my children’s book!

I had time to be violently ill, compose myself again, and make our call on time. We had a lovely chat and I was thrilled by what she had to tell me. You guys, I’ve worked hard on this book and God’s fingerprints are all over it. I just have a feeling. This is the one. This is the book that God has given me to share with the world first.

Beauty in the midst of misery.

I don’t know what the future holds, but I do know this. Sometimes the good, the bad, and the ugly happen in the same moment. Sometimes the highs and lows are intertwined. Sometimes our spirits soar while our bodies crash.

It’s times like this when I feel God’s presence deeply and intimately. I know that He is with me, guiding my life, and encouraging my heart even in the midst of suffering. He hasn’t abandoned me, in fact, He’s showing me that I’m right on track with the good plan He has for my life.

My journey as a writer looks different because of chronic illness. It disrupts things, slows things down, and makes something that’s hard anyway even more difficult. But it also gives me a unique perspective and a unique voice and those things are pure gold in the world of writing.

Joy in the midst of pain.

Maybe you need to hear this message too. Maybe you need to know that God is in the midst of your story. He’s in the mess, in the suffering, in the pain, in the misery – and He’s working. He’s using even the bad and the ugly to refine and grow us.

If we love God, He can use everything for our good. Oh how I need to remember this. God says everything. Even the bad and the ugly things God can use for our good. That’s amazing!

God can use everything for our good. That’s a reminder we all need from time to time. #faithoverfear

Are there areas of your life that you need to surrender to God? Are there places where you need to invite Him in and ask Him to restore and refine? Have you seen God’s goodness in the midst of suffering? Please share in the comments, I’d love to hear how He’s working in your life.

Until next time,


“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” ~Romans 8:28, NLT

About Author

I'm the author of "Howie's Broken Hee-Haw," a photographer, and lover of all things adventurous. I'll walk alongside you and help you discover joy for your journey and freedom in Christ!


  • mimionlife
    June 17, 2020 at 4:20 pm

    I’m praying you feel better. Yes, God can use our ups and downs to help us grow closer to Him. This is a great message Josie. 🙂

    • Josie Siler
      June 17, 2020 at 7:44 pm

      Thank you so much! It’s a process, but thankfully God is in it!

  • J.D. Wininger (@JD_Wininger)
    June 25, 2020 at 10:23 am

    I too hope you are feeling better. I manage a chronic disease or two in my life; and it’s not always fun, but it can be rewarding. In the midst of the worst times, we remember who holds us and His promise of a perfected eternity with Him. It definitely helps. As for your latest children’s book; I’ll be praying that God takes your offering, blesses it, and uses it to further His kingdom. What a wonderful gift to God is one’s self. God’s blessings young lady. Fell better soon please.

    • Josie Siler
      June 25, 2020 at 12:22 pm

      Thanks so much, JD. You’re right, living with chronic disease isn’t always fun, but it can be very rewarding. Some of the best experiences of my life have been because of illness. Many of my dearest friends I met because of illness. God has a plan in all of it!

  • Jeannie Waters
    June 26, 2020 at 9:08 pm

    Josie, you are one amazing lady. I always enjoy your blog posts and learn something from them. I prayed for your children’s book and look forward to hearing more about it. Thank you for reminding us that no matter how bad circumstances appear, God is still working in us.

    • Josie Siler
      June 26, 2020 at 9:14 pm

      I’m so glad! Thank you so much for your prayers. I’m so glad that God is at work in us and in our world.

  • Katy Kauffman
    June 29, 2020 at 12:14 am

    I’m excited about the progress you’re making with your book! That’s wonderful.

    In the small issues I’ve had, the time it takes to get better has slowed me down so I can think about where I am in life and what God wants me to do. I remember it’s okay to sit and rest (go figure, right?). Life isn’t about how many things you can check off your to-do list, but it’s about pursuing and be-ing. Sometimes we just need to “be.”

    • Josie Siler
      June 29, 2020 at 4:18 pm

      Thanks Katy! Yes, sometimes we need to just stop and rest and BE. It’s so needed, yet we don’t do it nearly enough!


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