Recently, a period of Lectio Divina of Psalm 103, long one of my favorites, reminded me of the promise that God “forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases.” For years I clung to that promise and the ones that accompany it – “to redeem your life from the pit and crown you with love and compassion; to satisfy your desires with good things.”

The passage became important to me specifically around the diseases of those I deeply loved – my husband’s cancer and a child’s struggles. I was at the point in my journey where I could clearly see God’s redemption and rescue from my diseased pit, and that evidence spawned hope for others. Today my loved ones’ healing is equally apparent, and I’m grateful.

Other forms of disease came to mind as I engaged recently with the familiar passage. What about my disease of being easily frustrated and aggravated? Of the emotional fatigue and discouragement that darkens my days more often than I want to admit? Of my bent toward negativity? What about the disease of my impaired memory that steals names and details from my consciousness?

What about these diseases, God? I demanded. I sensed an eternal smile and heard the response, “You’re recognizing these are diseases and bringing them before me. That’s a good start, my child.”

Twelve Step recovery instructs us to admit our powerlessness, believe in a power greater than ourselves that can restore us to sanity, and decide to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God. Today I trust that process works for all kinds of different diseases.

Marnie C. Ferree