I have been quite ill for the past two months with a bacterial infection. Thankfully, I am now on the mend. Dozens of people faithfully prayed for me during this time, and I so appreciate all the prayers. I thought it might be good to share the journey with you.
We have many sure-word promises of healing in the Bible, and I believe in them with all my heart. I claimed those promises, as did my praying friends. But when I didn’t immediately and miraculously get well, some people were troubled. A couple of well-meaning folks suggested unforgiveness in my heart was the culprit. This was very discouraging! I dutifully brought their concerns before the Lord, but did not feel their assessment was accurate. Others who know me well did not feel it was, either.
When healing doesn’t happen quickly or supernaturally, the tendency is to try to figure it out, and if we can’t, to start laying blame, usually on the sick person. This is very common in Charismatic/Pentecostal circles, and it is detrimental to the person who needs healing. It comes from a pervading “works” mentality, which believes it is all about us doing and speaking every iota perfectly in order for the Bible promises to be attained. We think our performance brings the answers, instead of putting our trust in Jesus our Healer. In essence, we want to come up with a formula to fix ourselves, instead of admitting our weakness and utter dependence upon Him.
A pastor friend felt God revealed to him that I would have to go through the difficulties, but that it would all end well. He shared the story of Paul’s shipwreck, in Acts 27 and 28. He particularly mentioned that Paul had been bitten by a venomous snake on the island of Melita, and at first people jumped to the conclusion that it was due to Paul having sinned. But that was not the truth. The process was part of God’s plan, He did receive glory, and Paul came out of it all right in the end.
Someone reminded me of Romans 8:28, “… All things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” This fit well with what our pastor friend had shared. I began to get a glimpse of God’s higher perspective and that somehow God was at work for His glory and my good in ways I couldn’t yet see.
The Lord gave me two particular Scriptures which I have prayed often throughout this ordeal:
Psalm 41:3 — “The Lord will sustain and strengthen him on his sickbed; in his illness, You will restore him to health.” (AMP)
Psalm 23:1-3 — “The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want [lack]. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul….”
I had moments of fear, and prayed Psalm 56:3, 4: “What time I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God I will praise His Word; in God I have put my trust. I will not fear what flesh can do to me.” Many times I said, “Lord, I put myself completely in Your hands. That’s all I can do.” I have not had perfect faith or perfect peace. At times I felt very hopeless. The emotional toll has been great. I relied on my husband’s faith and the faith of friends when I didn’t have much of my own.
The Lord uncovered some attitude flaws during this time — issues I had not realized I had. The whole experience has been extremely humbling. But refining is always a good thing, and I am grateful for it.
In the end, the Lord has brought healing through doctors and a treatment I would have preferred to have avoided. But His hand and timing have been on it all. I hope for better days ahead, although it will be a couple of weeks yet before we’ll be certain that no more treatment is necessary.
If I had had my own way, I would have preferred miraculous healing, without the need for all the doctoring. I don’t yet know how this will ultimately bring God glory. I do believe we should be healed supernaturally far more often than we are. But I know He does things the best way, I am not in control, and I have to trust Him for the outcome.
No matter what trouble He allows us to pass through, the Lord is always with us in the midst of it, and at the right moment, He will bring us out of it. Our challenge is to cling to Him and not let go while we persevere in believing in His goodness and His promises.
I hope that my honest story will assure someone else who has health issues that you are not a failure just because you are struggling. If it has helped, would you please take the time to leave a comment? Thank you!
The Intercessor Manual,
by Lee Ann Rubsam
Before Whom We Stand,
by Lee Ann Rubsam