I believe in God’s power to heal by miracles or by medicine. I have seen God use both in my life. Whether my healing comes through a miracle of by modern medicine God still gets all the praise. Throughout this crazy/beautiful health journey, many people have prayed for my complete healing. Some of those prayers have been answered, but others have not. I am still dealing with several incurable diseases. Complete healing on earth is not always God’s plan for us. But even when our healing doesn’t come, I pray we will not waste the journey. Here are a few lesson I have learned along my crazy/beautiful journey.
1). Don’t believe your storm is a curse. My health journey has been a gift from God. Yes, a gift. Since my journey started in 2002, God has used my health challenges to teach me so many things. I have become more compassionate, patient, forgiving, less judgmental and more loving. God has also allowed me to become a health advocate, missionary and abolitionist during this journey. I have had the honor to pray with people who only had hours to live and rejoice with those who experienced a miracle. I personally don’t believe any of this would have been possible unless I was walking this health journey.
2). Spend more time in God’s word, with family/friends and less time on Google. It is easy to get caught up wanting to research everything you can when given a negative diagnosis. There is nothing wrong with wanting to find out more about the illness you’re facing. I actually encourage everyone to become their own health advocate. But we can go overboard at times. Our lives can get consumed by our health issues. Instead I would encourage you to spend time in your bible and with family/friends. That is where you will find your strength and encouragement. And believe me, when you’re going through a storm, you will need all the strength and encouragement you can get.
3). Don’t walk your journey alone. As I shared in point #2, surround yourself with positive, life speaking family and friends. I cannot imagine walking this journey alone. I have seen people do it and they were miserable. I have been blessed to be surrounded by a wonderful group of family and friends. Some have come and gone during my journey. At times that has hurt, but I refuse to dwell on the negatives. I choose to celebrate the family and friends who have stuck with me during the darkest and brightest moments of my journey. So don’t walk your journey alone.
4). Live with hope. Don’t waste your storm grieving as those who don’t have any hope. I know this is not always easy. Some days you just want curl up in bed and forget about the challenges you’re facing. Doing that every once in awhile is okay, but do not stay there. Call a friend. Take a walk. Listen to some music. Take a trip. Most importantly, reach out to God during those challenging moments. As Christians we should be living in hope. That doesn’t mean we will not have tough days, but those tough days should not define us. You are more than the current storm you’re facing. Your hope is not in the test results. Your hope is not in your medical team. Your hope is in God. He will never leave or forsake you. God is always with you. That should give you hope to make it another day.
5). Share your story. During my crazy/beautiful health journey, I have chosen to be very public with my story. That has been my choice. Not everyone wants to be so public. That is fine, but I would encourage you to share your story in some way. Not to shine the light on yourself, but to help someone else who is going through their own storm. When I first started my health challenge, I had no idea what to do. I was blessed to have some people step up and share their journey and how they survived. It meant the world to me. So, you might not choose to have your journey unfold publicly, but make sure you’re available to help someone starting their own health journey.
These are just a few lessons I have learned over the years. I pray they will help you as you walk through your own crazy/beautiful journey. ~OC