In this, the same year during which I toured the African country of Uganda, ate the fare of the locals, and drank water that may or may not have been purified by a handheld UV light, I apparently contracted a foodborne illness right here in Jacksonville, Florida. A week ago today I was attacked by what must have been Listeria monocytogenes. For those who, like me, did not know, Listeria is a bacteria that can live and grow in refrigerators, is common on fresh foods, and is often transmitted in fecal matter like that used in organic fertilizers. The first question I was asked when I told a doctor of my experience was, “Did you eat any organic salads or salad products?”
This week has been one of weakness and disability, but I know that in my weakness, God’s power is glorified. I imagine that the biological war in my body this week will leave the battleground in a better condition to turf skirmishes in the future. As the fever and aches have sapped my strength, I know my systems have been fortified for battles yet unknown and threats that may never be revealed to me. During this spell when rest has replaced exercise I know God has risen up antibodies for my defense. I am content to rest secure in the knowledge that “When I am weak, then I am strong” (2 Corinthians 12:10).