You know how worthless you feel when you are really sick? A prominent leader lay on his sickbed in that condition. He was so afflicted, word got out he might die. Various people came to visit, even though they weren’t real friends. They said nice sounding things but when they left they bad mouthed him in public. Even one of his best friends, someone who he regularly had over for lunch turned on him. Can you imagine how low he must have felt, how worthless? In his despair, he wrote down his complaints in a kind of poem. The man was King David and the poem is now known as Psalm 41.
My enemies say of me in malice,
“When will he die and his name perish?”
When one of them comes to see me,
he speaks falsely, while his heart gathers slander;
then he goes out and spreads it around.
All my enemies whisper together against me;
they imagine the worst for me, saying,
“A vile disease has afflicted him;
he will never get up from the place where he lies.”
Even my close friend,
someone I trusted,
one who shared my bread,
has turned against me. (Psalms 41:5-9)
Fast forward 1000 years or so. Jesus is about to be crucified. He spends a private farewell with his closest friends, washing their feet and sharing a final meal. And, as He passes out the bread, He tells them one of them will betray Him. He quotes a line from that sick man’s poem:
“I am not referring to all of you; I know those I have chosen. But this is to fulfill this passage of Scripture: ‘He who shared my bread has turned against me.’ (John 13:18-19)
Words, scrawled by a man too sick to get out of bed, became Scripture and were fulfilled in the life of God’s Son! Whodathunkit? Next time you are feeling too sick, too discouraged, too insignificant, too misunderstood, too abandoned, too unskilled or too weak to be used by God, remember that man’s sickbed poem. Don’t write yourself off. God uses people for His purposes even (and perhaps especially) in their weakest moments. He can use you, too.
When you least expect it.