I never thought that I would call suffering my friend, I sit here with fractured ribs, vertebrae in my neck warn out, recovering from a broken back, dealing with an auto-immune disease called PMR, an uncooperative chemical system, and living with the side effects of some pretty harsh drugs. There is much more in this list, but I don’t like to give sickness too much attention. Suffice to say, I have almost lost my life several times. I know many of you are saying, pray for healing. My answer is I have. It seems the harder I pray the worse I get. Now I have believed in total healing for probably longer than you have born in this fallen world. I have forgotten what a painless life is like.
I will not roll over and quit. So what do I do? I press into God’s Mercy. I have at times felt as weak as a kitten and I wish I was healthy. I always wonted a healing ministry. I have probably seen more sickness and death more than most. Ten years working in chronic and palliative care, six years doing pathologic autopsies on the dead searching for the cause of death, five years with eight mentally adult women living in my home. Through all this I was pastoring some of the most difficult people. This just scratches the surface of my involvement in suffering. I am tired of it! But I would not trade any of the, morbid experiences for anything.
One thing I can testify is that I have not been short-changed by God who says he heals and delivers. It will come. In the mean time He comes to me in my weakness. God’s Love and Kindness makes me love Him back. Sickness takes a back seat. I heard this story a long time ago. A man was jailed because of his faith. They whipped and beat on him terribly. Then he mercilessly was thrown in to his dark and filthy cell. There alone with no medical help covered in blood and bruises the Lord came to him. He felt the warmth and Love of Jesus running his hand up and down the torn flesh of his back. What he said next brings me to tears. “He was so wonderful. His love was greater than the pain of the whipping and beatings. It was so wonderful. I had a strange feeling that I wanted to be tortured again just to feel His love and touch.”