How has your book Surprised by Suffering helped you to face your own health challenges?
There are lots of people who’ve suffered a whole lot more than I have in the last year, but I have had some serious health issues in the last year. I have been reminded frequently of my own work in that book Surprised by Suffering, and I go back to my own advice that I gave to others and give it to myself.
On a practical level, one of my favorite daily experiences is to pray the 23rd Psalm because I have to remember who I am, who God is, that He is my Shepherd, and therefore there’s no reason for me to want anything. He takes me where He wants me to be, beside the still waters, in the green pastures, and He restores my soul. And even if I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I don’t have to be afraid of anything, because He’s with me.
I just keep looking at the elements of Psalm 23 every day, recognizing that I have to deal with limitations and anxieties. I don’t have any fear of death whatsoever, but I have lots of fears concerning how I’m going to get there. It’s the process that’s scary, and I don’t particularly enjoy pain, so I’m always looking for ways to get away from that. But, there is unbelievable peace and comfort in the Word of God, predominantly knowing who He is and believing in His sovereignty.
Right now, whatever else I’m called to do, whatever those limitations of my health are, that’s part of my present calling. I believe that God has called me to be where I am at this very moment, and I think it’s true for every believer at that point.
This is a transcript of R.C. Sproul’s answer from our Theology in Dialogue event and has been lightly edited for readability. To ask Ligonier a biblical or theological question, just visit Ask.Ligonier.org or message us on Facebook or Twitter.