So we are going through all of these tests, and if NOTHING shows up on any of them, the final conclusion they are coming to is that this is some form of progressive small fiber polyneuropothy that was caused by the Stevens-Johnson Syndrome. Thats fancy talk for the SJS causing my nervous system to self destruct lol. It is highly unpredictable as to what it will do, how it will progress and no, they cannot fix it- their main goal is to assist me in dealing with it's effects on my body- the spams, the weakness, the pain, the eventual loss of motor skills, etc. The pain has become too much for the medication to handle, and I have been moved up to a medication called Fentanyl- it's a patch I wear on my body and it releases a very strong medication right through my skin and lasts for 3 days. It's much stronger than the pills but better than taking pills every few hours. Now I just use pills for breakthrough pain. I am still on another type of medication to help with some of my nerve issues, but I am hoping if we find the right dose of this pain medication maybe it will end up helping at least with the pain side of things. It is slightly embarrassing because it leaves marks all over my body when I have to switch locations...but really its a small price to pay in light of everything lol.**
So thats the update!
Yesterday was Thanksgiving. I do not have any family near me, so it is just me, Jeff and the kids. We don't do anything during the day because every year our church does a big outreach where we cook a million Thanksgiving meals and deliver them all over the city to those who do not have any meals for Thanksgiving. So this year Jeff took our oldest son and they were out until 2pm giving out meals while I was home hanging out with the little ones. Then we just chilled out together the rest of the day and ate a nice traditional Thanksgiving meal for dinner that was so graciously given to us form the leftovers from the outreach by the church because I was unable to cook one myself. It was a lovely, peaceful day with my family- a mix of giving and of receiving.
But later that night I was given the opportunity of which I am so grateful for. Earlier in the week I was contacted by an old friend of mine who is a youth pastor of a church in Canada. Tricia wrote to me and asked me if I was willing to appear live via FaceTime to her youth group and be interviewed. She said they had recently been going through a series on the topic of Divine healing and that some of them had been struggling with what happens when God doesn't heal someone. She asked me to talk about that side of the issue- about living life as someone who serves Jesus yet is very, very ill.
I cannot think of anything better for me to talk about.
If there is one thing I know, this is it. I do not struggle with that question and I jumped at the chance to bring clarity to anyone who does. Maybe that is not worded right- I cannot bring any clarity to the issue, because I am no theologian. I know God, but I do not understand His ways. But I can attest to His character- and all I wanted was the chance to do that.
So I decided to share the interview with you all this week. Below are the questions that were asked of me via FaceTime and the responses that I gave. I cannot thank Tricia enough for the chance to tell my story and for giving me a platform to share the faithfulness of Jesus with others. Here is the actual interview along with my answers:
|Prepping for interview!!|
3. Has being sick changed your view on who God is?
My view of God totally changed when I got sick. The amount of awe I have for God cannot be described. I have an intimacy with God that I didn't have before- but I also have a respect and a deep sense of just awe that wasn't there before. I knew God was worthy of worship…but now I feel it.
4. Have you doubted God's existence or God's ability?
Never. How can you doubt the existence of a God whose presence you feel so strongly all the time? I do not believe anybody when they say they don't believe in God- I think what they really mean is that they are angry with Him or that they have unanswered questions from Him, or have an issue with Him. But no- I have never doubted His existence- He has been more real to me this past year than ever before. As far as His ability, I don't even think that's the ever question. I think many people believe God is able to heal- as do I. I think the real question is have I ever doubted whether or not God ever WILL heal me. Sure, God CAN heal me if He wants do- but does He want to? Is He ever planning on actually doing it? Those are the questions that people are really asking. And I really don't know. I am no theologian and the truth is I DONT CARE. Maybe He will, maybe He won't It doesn't effect a single thing about my life or about how I will continue to walk with Him. If He doesn't heal me will that change anything? No. I don't serve Him because I believe one day He will heal me…I serve Him because he is My Lord and I love Him. I don't wake up every day with that being the firth thing on my mind- yes, I wake up with pain being the first thing on my mind- but that draw me to prayer. Not that I would be healed but that I would simply draw closer to needing Jesus. That I would be graceful in how I handle my day, that I would still look for ways to serve Him, that I would still honor Him with my life. It really does keep me needing the Lord every waking moment.
|About to go live via FaceTime!|
My prayers have changed very little since getting sick. Well, that's not true- it has given me more to pray about because I have more pitfalls to watch out for. As someone who is in a lot of pain every day I have more things I need to guard against as far as someone who wants to live like Jesus. I pray very much that I would not be a complainer. That I would be a woman of character and integrity in all that I do. That if I see someone in need I would not be so wrapped up in my own problems that I would not be able to extend my hand and heart to help them. My prayers for the kind of person that I want to be have NOT changed since I got sick. Once and a while I pray for my healing…but I confess it is simply not my main prayer. I DO pray for it and I KNOW God can do it. So I ask for it and then I move on. My physical body only has an effects this earth- my character has the ability to effect eternity. So I spend a lot more time praying for who I am as a person than I do about my body.
Oh, what a question to ask. God has not taught me a single thing. But I have learned many, many things. God is who He is. He never changes- His character, His faithfulness, who He is never changes...but what we discover about Him and what we uncover about Him is what we are constantly learning through our experiences. What you choose to see and learn about that is up to you. God is not sadistic- He is not up there playing games with us. He does not move pieces around for His own pleasure. This world is a fallen place full of sin and sickness and evil things because MAN IS FALLEN AND MAN CHOOSES THINGS APART FROM GOD. We live in a world that suffers the many consequences of lives lived apart from God. People get sick. I got sick. Jesus was Jesus all the years I was healthy and He is still Jesus all the years I have been sick. Plain and simple. But what I have learned over and over and over again is that He Is Faithful. He is so incredibly faithful. You have two choices when you go through something hard and traumatic- and the choice is solely yours- you can run to God, or you can run from God. One of those choices brings you down a path of excuses, and blame, and bitterness. The other brings you down a path of depth, and discovery, and the truest, deepest walk with the Lord that you will ever know. I am blown away with how intimately I know my God. People will say to me "I could not handle this the way you do it if happened to me." Well, if you were to get as sick as me, you would have to make a choice- and if you chose Jesus then you too would have abundant grace upon you. Because I am nothing special- NOTHING special. I am as average as they get…but I love Jesus. And when I chose to cling to Him in my hardest of hours, He met me.
Thank you Tricia. Thank you for giving me a chance to tell your students how wonderful and how faithful God is ESPECIALLY in the midst of hard times.
Be blessed this week, and I look forward to seeing you all next Friday.