Monday (July 9th) I was working in the garden and came away with some sort of rash. I usually have no problem with these types of things - however, my arms and legs were covered in a 'hives' type rash. No problem, I thought. That is what I thought during the morning hours. By noon, I was getting lethargic and pretty tired. I lay down after lunch for a quick nap and then got up to discover that I was extremely sore in both joints and soft tissue. I thought I had just 'overdone' the weeding / picking of veggies. Throughout the afternoon I just couldn't get going and fell asleep on a lawn chair and the sofa at different times during the day. The stiffness and pain just kept getting worse. I was in bed by 10:30p and woke up this morning...covered with the rash. My entire body was one big rashy mess. I also felt like I had been worked over with a baseball bat. I could hardly get motivated to take a shower. I was really in a lot of pain. I forced myself through it and went to work. All morning long I was again lethargic and sore. Everyone at the church offered their well-intended advice. All were agreed that I 'must' see a doctor. By lunch I was exhausted and really discouraged about not getting much done. I came home, hungry but not willing to eat - so I lay down on the sofa for another 30 minute nap. When I got up I ate half a turkey and tomatoe sandwich and then headed back to work, against my wife's wishes. On the way, I discovered my Ibuprofen in the car. I quickly swallowed a couple and hoped for the best. In about 45 minutes or so I was beginning to feel a little bit better. That's when I got a call from a fellow staff member who was talking with a parishoner about my rash. (You just got to love it when it gets around that you have a rash) They determined I had what is called Fifth disease. Don't ask me what it is - but they suggested I stay away from pregnant women and allow it to take its course. Funny thing was, by time I went home (around 5:30 or so) I was feeling pretty good - and the rash was fading. Even now, the tingling / itching is dying down and the rash is all but gone.
I find it humorous when people attempt to diagnosis what might be 'ailing' you. Sometimes they are right; sometimes wrong. One thing is for sure: spiritually speaking there is only one Authority that is right 100% of the time when it comes to diagnosing the 'ailments' of the heart. That is God's Word. You might ignore the 'rash' on your soul, but friend, I recommend you tend to the words of the Great Physician and allow the Balm of Gilead to soothe your discomfort. When was the last time you filled your prescription in the Word?