Wonder- Hillsong United

Friday, June 17, 2016

A Controversial Post

Is it a lack of faith to have an understanding that God will not heal me?  I know and  100% believe that it is in his power to heal me.  I have prayed for it as have innumerable others.  But somewhere along the line--about 3 or  4 years ago I had the distinct sense that it is not in God's loving and all knowing plan for me to be healed.  Does this make God any less loving? No it does not.  It makes me lean all the more heavily on the Everlasting Arms for the strength to get through each day. Is it for a lack of faith that God has said "no" to my request? No.  I wholeheartedly believe that it takes more faith for me to get through even one day of this pain and fatigue than it would for me to request and receive healing.

It requires an intimate knowledge of God's character and purposes for me to survive another day; for me to have an unshakeable faith in God's goodness and wisdom in the face of bone grinding pain.  Years ago, when I first became mentally ill, I asked for God to deliver and heal me.  When he did not, I basically abandoned him, feeling that he either could not come through--that he was less than all-powerful or that he was not the good God he claimed to be and therefore did not deserve my devotion.   

I went through 15 years of hell without God's assistance and love (at least I thought he was absent but he was not.  He repeatedly, miraculously saved my life and put me on the path he wanted me to walk in order to restore my faith in him.)  It was a bottomless pit of despair because not only was my suffering unabated, I did not have a sense of the hand of God in my life.  I had no one to cry out to in the many black nights of deepest despair.  And that was an important lesson for me to learn.  Regardless of our faith, there is suffering in this life that we are destined to experience.  We can either do it with God or we can do it without him.  Believe me "Door Number One" is the one to choose.

So God did eventually lessen my mental pain.  He did not remove it and there are still times when I suffer greatly in that regard--but now I have a hand to hold and footsteps to walk in as God goes before me clearing a path for me to walk.  

And the giant I now face is pain and increasing disability as all of my joints are being destroyed by this horrible disease.  And, as I said, there have been many hours of prayer seeking relief.  But over the years, God has increasingly ratified my sense that this is my "thorn in the flesh". 

Once Paul prayed three times and had God's assurance that it was not his will to remove the thorn--but rather, it was God's plan to work in Paul's heart to believe and understand that God was still at work--not in SPITE of the thorn--but by using that weakness to achieve greater strength and glory as a result.  And notice: Once Paul had this understanding that God gave him, he did NOT continue to bang on the gates of Heaven to insist that God heal him!

I wholeheartedly believe that it is a lack of faith to continue to insist that God grant healing once he has led me to understand that healing is not his plan for me .  I constantly try to make people to understand that YES, I need their prayers.  But the prayers that I need are not for healing but for: strength,
faith, 
endurance, 
relief from pain, 
wisdom for my doctors,
clarity about my purpose in God's Kingdom, greater filling with God's Spirit, 
an outpouring of spiritual gifts....
and ways in which I might serve him better.  

Folks: THESE are the prayers I need.  Do not "gyp" me from the needs I have and waste time praying for what God has already ordained not to happen. I know I will get a lot of criticism for this post.  I urge you to take those critical feelings before the throne of God and seek HIS take on the situation.

I am not closing my heart to healing.  But I believe I have had a clear word from God that it is not to be: not until the resurrection from the dead when I will receive my brand new, pain free body. I believe that when God bids me "come" I will rise to meet him, leaving all my artificial joints and hardware in a pile on the ground...for I will no longer need them !!  Isn't that AWESOME??

That is my great hope and source of unending delight as I contemplate it on this side of that day.  That is why I do not give up. It is my firm faith in that day to come that gives me the hope I need to get through yet another day of suffering.
Please, I urge you, pray for me.  I greatly need your prayer...but maybe use the list I gave you above to guide your prayers for me.  That is truly what I need.
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