My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Thankful for a God who heals....

After yesterday's post about Lent and my determination to use it not to specifically give something up... but instead to use it as an opportunity to adapt more of Jesus' character into my own character... a lively discussion ensued on my facebook about the meaning of Lent, self-sacrifice, etc. spearheaded by my Uncle Bill. I love when something I've blogged about encourages others to share their opinions and perspective! Ever since my brother and I used to go to Rocky Horror on the weekends... 25 years ago... I have loved audience participation. It validates for me that there are real people actually reading my blog.

So, I'm thankful for that today... learning from others.... seeing different perspectives... what a joy!

I have a doctors appointment this morning to figure out what to do about my high blood pressure. I'm thankful to finally be able to see a doctor since I've been trying to get in for almost a month now. I'm considering changing to a different doctor's office. The two lady doctors in the practice that I had been seeing have left and it's just men doctors and ... I'm ok with seeing a man but with as much stuff as I have going on, I need someone who brings a little compassion and empathy to the "table". I'll see how it goes today. Also... this elevated blood pressure situation has been going on for a year and everyone keeps passing it off as being related to pain or one particular medication or another but nobody wants to take any action to lower it. Three months ago I saw the doctor for... strep throat, I think it was... and my blood pressure was up. I expressed my concern about continually high readings and they wanted me to wait until THIS check up to see if it got better. SO today... I've going in with a determination that they will either do something to FIX it... or I'll find a different doctor.

I'm weary. My pain has been off the charts and my blood pressure being elevated makes me feel dizzy, short of breath, tired, disoriented... and in the midst of all that there's added pressure on me to perform at work and I'm trying... I've worked harder over the past two weeks than I have in a long time and I'm still not getting the results I need to succeed at work. I trust God. I believe that whatever is going to happen is in His hands and I know that sometimes we fail at something because God is leading us to something else. I'm not giving up... I'm making sure that I do the best I possibly can. My efforts are never in vain... when we struggle, even if we don't receive the desired results, we still develop our character and learn just how far we can stretch ourselves.

In the midst of my own self-pity... I see these news reports of people who are truly suffering in a way that, by the grace of God, I doubt I ever will. The Christian man in Iran who is facing death for being a Christian. The people in Syria who are being killed by their own government. My brother is going to Haiti next week... where, two years after the earthquake, many are living in tents and battling disease and hunger. There are so many people in this country who are unemployed and have no immediate hope of finding a job. There are people who are facing losing their home. There are children who are being abused. People in abusive relationships that don't see a way out. People battling addiction and losing the fight. There is pain everywhere, some of it is like mine... physical... and some of it is emotional.

Today... I'm working on learning more about Jesus as our healer. Jehovah Raphe - the Lord our healer. I studied a bit in Matthew and Mark yesterday, absorbing some of the verses that describe Christ as healer. I tried to find something definitive that told how many people Jesus healed in the course of His ministry here on earth and I found no concrete answer. I guess we don't really know... but the fact is that He healed enough people that people followed him with the expectation of being healed.

There was an echo in my heart on that last phrase, "people followed Him with the expectation of being healed"... we still do that, don't we?

Modern medicine, despite all of it's advancements, isn't a 100% guarantee of healing. People still die.
Jesus' ability to heal and the willingness to heal didn't mean that every person He came into contact with continued in their mortal bodies forever. They still died.
There are times that people pray for healing and it doesn't come. It hasn't come for me.
Does that mean that I changed my belief that He can heal? No.
Does that mean that I am *less than* because He hasn't healed me? No.
I don't have all the answers. I don't know why some precious lives end far before "their time"... I don't know why some are healed and some aren't. In my life, I can say that pain has drawn me closer to Jesus. Dependence on Him for strength to get through the work day has taught me more about Him than I would have learned by never having struggled with my own mortality.
Just like with every other circumstantial crisis in my life... I wouldn't trade the struggle for what it taught me and what it brought me.
Divorce. Single parenting. Poverty. Fire. Health struggles. All of it draws me closer to Him. If I never had a problem, I'd never know that God could solve them.
I want to be healed but not if it keeps me from knowing Him better or accomplishing His Will and Purpose in my life.
I don't want to be a Crisis Christian or a Suffering Saint. But I do want to be able to answer those who are living with pain and say, "I know what you're going through" and it be sincere. I know that my life has given me a unique perspective for encouraging others. I want to be able to share the hope that comes from faith in God.

See... my healing... it might not happen here... but I am persuaded that in my life after my death... that I will be free of pain... and I want to convince others of this same hope. I'm thankful that He can heal. And I'm thankful that sometimes He doesn't.
Have a great day, y'all!