Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Wishing on Apples

I wish it were this simple. An apple a day.  However, as you read on yesterday's post, my friend Susan and I often find ourselves wishing our health issues could be solved so easily.  Like her, it has taken me many years to find out that I am hyper-sensitive to gluten, milk, eggs, yogurt, and peanuts.  I also suffer from Endometriosis and have chronic pain related to both.  Today, I am fighting a case of hives to which I have yet to find the reason behind the problem.  Chronic illness is challenging.  

It keeps your brain revved up with questions.  I need to be perfect with my diet to remain pain free.  Yet, there are days when I can do everything right for my allergies and be in pain from the Endometriosis.  Chronic illness challenges my faith as it has Susan's.  

"Think about the body language you exhibit as you sit on a doctor’s exam table in a paper dress. That dejected “posture” often predicts the success of your visit." Susan Ingebretson
This sentence resonated with me.  I've sat on many doctor's exam tables in that funky little paper dress.  I remember one particular trip to my gynecologist before I was diagnosed with Endo.  After much research, I had diagnosed myself with Endometriosis of the Colon.  Don't worry I will refrain from applying a picture here. :)  Yet, my other "team of doctors" were skeptical.  They felt I was just grasping at straws.  Grasping was an understatement.  For I had sat on one exam table too many and I was breaking under the weight of my illness.  The assault from a spirit of confusion was immense.  The physical battle was one thing, but feeling there was not ever going to be a solution to this problem was very defeating.  I remember sitting in my paper dress and explaining "from the top" when my health started going wrong.  As I began to rattle it all off, I just sobbed in his office.  I was so tired. I needed him to tell me I was right. I needed him to not say "oh you must just be a stressed out lady" like the other doctors had.  That day, I was right.  That day, I felt hope for the first time in a long time.  

It has been two years since that diagnosis.  My body is better, but it is a daily struggle.  Yet, in spite of the struggles, I know that God is good.  Hardship, as painful as it is, refines us.  The first twenty years of my life were pretty smooth.  I was successful and enjoyed life.  But, nothing has brought me closer to the Lord than the past decade.  God's word says that when we seek Him we will find Him when we search for Him with our whole hearts.  In my prayer time this week, I have been continually praying that God would just let me "touch the hem of Jesus garment." I was not even sure of the reference, but knew the passage. Last night, in Susan's article she mentioned that very passage. 
She said: 
"Matthew 9:20-22 details the healing of a woman who’d been ill for a dozen years. Her chronic affliction was cured by simply touching the hem of Jesus’ garment. “Your faith has made you well,” Jesus said to her."
Her reference to that passage just further confirmed to me that God is involved in my details.  For lately, I have been moping about my condition and feeling desperate again.   That passage reminds me that He wants me well too.  He purchased my life at a high price and I am redeemed.  Chronic illness can challenge your faith.  It can make you feel like God is not listening.  But, if there is one thing that I have learned, it is that God hears me when I call. He hears every prayer. He has bottled every tear.  One day, He will come back for His children and in an instance, we will be transformed.  We will be able to leave our paper gowns behind for a Heavenly robe and experience pure joy with Him.

No more wishing on apples.