As believers, we often wrestle with understanding how God can allow a person who worships Him to become ill, in pain or disabled. Unfortunately, often the first assumption we have about a believer with a continuing illness is that they must not have enough faith or they must be hiding a sin. Sadly, this can be devastating to those who love the Lord and who are actually living by the faith despite their circumstances that God wants us all to live.
This book explains our natural responses to those debilitated by chronic conditions and gives many examples of how to be a true encourager to our brothers and sisters in need! It is full of Scripture and quotes from physicians who specialize in chronic conditions. It is a must for all believers, church staff and ministry leaders!
Not By Sight: Ministering to Believers Living with Illness and Pain is based upon the knowledge learned by the true life experiences of Wayne and Sherri Connell, as well as countless others who live with debilitating conditions. All of her life, Sherri was an extremely active person who loved her careers, singing and dancing in musicals, riding her horse and lifting weights. In college, she studied Music Theater, then obtained 2 Bachelor Degrees in Business, with a Minor in Liberal Arts.
Although Sherri had enormous plans for her life, just as she was plotting out her Master’s Degree, she was stopped in her tracks at the age of 27. Starting with another winter bout of pneumonia, Sherri became paralyzed, so sick she could barely sit up and was in horrible pain. She was hospitalized and diagnosed with Progressive Multiple Sclerosis and Late-Chronic Lyme Disease. Suddenly, she went from “on the go” 24/7 to struggling just to get to a doctor’s appointment or take a shower.
Shortly after the onset of Sherri’s disability, to help her cope with her losses and un-welcomed changes, she began to write in her journal. Despite the seriousness of Sherri’s illness, people often had difficulty understanding how she could “look good” to them, even though she was very sick. Unfortunately, because of these misconceptions, people often jumped to the conclusion that she was just being lazy, unmotivated or was not trying hard enough. For a goal oriented, talented, career driven person like Sherri, these notions were absolutely devastating.
When Wayne realized there were so many other people around the world being hurt by the same lack of understanding that Sherri was experiencing, his passion quickly grew from being his wife’s supporter, to being an advocate for all who are living with disabilities. Thus, Wayne founded, Where Is God Ministries. He also compiled this booklet, Not By Sight, which contains excerpts from Sherri’s journal. WIGM distributes this book to give believers living with illness and pain a voice about how they feel, what they need and how others can be an encouragement!
Copyright 2004 | Wayne Connell | All Rights Reserved
Someone once wrote that ‘acute pain is a night in jail, but chronic pain is a long-term prison sentence without parole.’ Boy, is that true! And I am thinking that perhaps you know someone who is struggling with chronic pain. Well, I want to help you to be able to effectively minister to that friend. I want you to know what to do and say around people in pain. This book, Not By Sight, will serve as a wonderful teaching tool to you, I know it will! I read it; I love it.
JONI EARECKSON TADA – Author of When God Weeps: Why Our Sufferings Matter to the Almighty and over 50 other books – Recipient of Gold Medallion Lifetime Achievement Award from the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association – Founder & CEO of Joni and Friends International Disability Center
Wayne and Sherri Connell are in a unique position to offer desperately needed advice to those who are faced with the challenge of ministering to Christians who struggle with chronic illness. They know first hand what helps and what does not help those afflicted. The insights offered in this book might save a friendship or a marriage. Not by Sight is sure to equip the loved ones of the chronically ill with the biblical wisdom and practical skills needed to minister those who yearn for understanding, encouragement, and day-to-day assistance.
DOUGLAS GROOTHUIS, PHD – Author of Christian Apologetics: A Comprehensive Case for Biblical Faith – Professor of Philosophy, Denver Seminary