Oh, what a miserable month I had, while I was down with the bug.
It was a month full of misery, but a month where I did not lose my faith.
Though the devil tried to steal my joy over my recent healing, I would not give in to his lies.
Oh, what a beautiful thing Our Lord has given me.
His mercy touched my inmost wounds and He has healed me, body and soul.
I wrote a few months ago about our church laying hands on me and healing me from my severe pain and suffering. Well, shortly after my healing, I came down with the flu. As many of you may know, the flu has been especially bad again this year. Just about every rig that came through Cherry Valley during November and December had at least one person sick with the flu. From talking with locals and also with friends and family spread around the country, I ascertained that this particular strain of the flu seemed to follow a rather predictable timeline.
For me, it started with several days of sore and teary eyes and a runny nose. When my eyes started to feel better, the sinus congestion kicked into high gear. I went through several boxes of tissues as I sneezed my way through about two weeks of this phase alone. Then a few days of stomach pain, diarrhea, and fever were added to the sinus issues. When that went away, my congestion and runny nose also started to dissipate, which led me to believe that I was on the mend. Not so, because after a few days of gradual improvement, my eyes were acting up again and the congestion and runny nose and sneezing really kicked into high gear. This brought on a bad cough that after a few days, went away. Another week of sinus issues and I found myself truly on the rebound to better health again.
During this horrible month or so, while I was sick with the flu, the devil tried to convince me that I was having a Lyme flare-up. I cried and I prayed to God that it wasn’t so. I did firmly believe in my healing miracle, but I was weak and worn out from being sick.
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
I kept talking to others who had had the flu recently. I kept telling myself that so-and-so had the same constellation of symptoms and for just as long a duration. Too many people were going through the same thing, and following the same pattern, for my symptoms to be something different than what they were suffering through.
That was the devil’s mistake—trying to use such a widespread seasonal illness to convince me I had not been divinely healed.
I stuck out my tongue at the enemy and continued to rely on God.
Once upon a time, I mistakenly thought that if my belief faltered even one iota, then I would lose the promises, the blessings, and the gifts God had given me. It was as if I were dreaming, and upon awakening, I found my hands empty because I could not hold onto the possessions of my dream.
Through the maturing of my faith, I have found that His blessings and promises are not fleeting. They are not dependent on me being perfect. If things were dependent on perfection, then I would never earn any of God’s gifts.
And that’s just it: We cannot earn a single thing, based on our own efforts or our own righteousness. We need Jesus to pay for our sins.
“’But if you can do anything, take pity on us and help us.’
‘If you can?’ said Jesus. ‘Everything is possible for one who believes.’
Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, ‘I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!’”
The above verse shows how there can be a duality to our belief—an acceptable duality. Think of it this way: If you were to win the lottery, it would most likely take your brain a while to accept the truth of your sudden prosperity. Just because you may exclaim that it is too good to be true, or that you cannot believe it, it does not make it untrue. If you took a dip in your pile of money, Uncle Scrooge McDuck style, then you might just realize your wealth because it is evident, right in front of you.
Similarly, the more you spend time with God and in His Word, the more your faith and belief will increase.
Although I used Uncle Scrooge and piles of money as an example, I do not condone such behavior, because when we act like Uncle Scrooge, we are worshiping money instead of worshiping God. Placing such a high value on the all mighty dollar and obsessing over our fortunes amounts to idolatry. There must be nothing higher than our faith in the true All Mighty.
My prayer for you today is for belief. I pray for your peace and your prosperity, as only God can provide.
In His Grace,