Originally published: 27.11.16
Its been a while since I last wrote something …
In fact over a year, and part of me has wondered over the last few months whether or not I have lost the ability to write. Or whether I’ve just lost confidence.
You can let me know after you’ve read this maybe?
I’ve been working on some thoughts for quite some time now and have never actually managed to feel like I had sorted them enough to publish for people to read – thats if I still have any readers! Anyone still out there?
And then I realised over the last few days especially, that perhaps I am never going to have them ‘sorted’.
I’ve also struggled with pressuring myself about the fact that I felt this stuff should be/needed to be ‘deep’, and theological and and and … but maybe they don’t need to be, and maybe they are just simple ideas and maybe some simple truths that don’t need over complicating right now, if ever?
So, healing … why has healing been on my mind ALOT lately? Good question! And where to start? Those of you who were regular readers or who know me will know that my health has been difficult lately.
I had no idea when my respiratory system first went kaput that it would have such a big impact … I mean, don’t get me wrong, asthma is asthma, and brittle asthma can be really cruel, and I’ve nearly seen Jesus much quicker than planned on a few occasions, but I thought it was liveable with, that it didn’t need to change my life too much.
I had no idea what was to come (story of my life eh?) …
I had no idea that 4/5 years down the line my health would have gotten worse in so many other ways.
See, the thing is, the day I had my very first full on asthma attack I didn’t know at that point that some kind of switch clicked in my body, and that a few years later it would have gone into full autoimmune mode where I am allergic to the world and where lots of different things don’t and won’t work properly in various difficult and dehabilitating ways.
I definitely didn’t know that I would end up on 21 tablets a day, taking them four times a day, before pain relief and that life would become a constant merry go round of hospitals, doctors, treatment and long term toxic medication to try and get on top of it and get my immune system to stop attacking itself/my body.
I didn’t know I would have lost my job, and 18 months later still be unable to work, because some days I can’t get out of bed, or some nights I can’t sleep for one of a hundred reasons making mornings a nightmare, and that I would need a cleaner (a godsend!) because some weeks my body is so sore just hoovering or washing up is hard work. I didn’t know my brain which could be sharp at times would often descend into a haze where I couldn’t remember what I was doing, or saying, to the point of stopping mid sentence sometimes and forgetting where I was at.
I didn’t know that all of this was going to impact my mental health so significantly, so much that sometimes I don’t go anywhere because I cant make my brain believe I should leave the house.
I didn’t know how much I valued my health until suddenly I didn’t have it anymore.
And then I had to think about healing in a different context. In the context of physical healing. I had to start thinking about and acknowledging the concept of God healing or not healing physically because so far my journey has been FULL to the brim of healing mentally and emotionally. But now I need physical healing.
I’ve had to search hard. Far and wide. To the depths of my soul to try and work out what I believe about healing, and the idea that God can heal physical ailments.
Does He? Well, I know the bible says He does, but does He?
And if He does then why does He heal some people, and not others …
And why do some Christians and the church make it so complicated … with statements such as ‘well you just need enough faith’ and ‘well, you need to claim your healing’ and so on …
And why do some people insist on ‘running after Jesus’ for healing, as if the only place Jesus can heal you is at some big event with some big speaker with a big crowd instead of believing that if God had it on His heart to cure you He would whether you were at some rally or at home, in the bath, or laid on the sofa flat out watching crap day time TV (it really IS crap huh?)
And … well, there are many ands, I could be here all night writing about them …
Where does it end …?
Well, I think, and this is by no means explaining my whole thought process whatsoever, because again I would be here all night trying to do that, and you would be reading for the next two hours, that it has to end by simply believing God can heal, and acknowledge that sometimes He doesn’t, and make the conscious choice to not get blinded by the ‘ands …’.
Which leads me to hope …
That big word. That big thing. HOPE.
We use the word ‘hope’ a lot today don’t we?
‘I hope I’ll get that new iPhone for Christmas’
‘I hope the boiler man comes to fix it soon’
And so on …
The dictionary says that hope means a ‘feeling of expectation and desire for a particular thing to happen’ and that sounds about right doesn’t it? We hope for good things for our lives don’t we, be it materially or other wise?
I have to be honest about it, (it’s my nature to be be a realist, right?) and acknowledge thats whilst I can have some HOPE Jesus does supernaturally heal me, or through my doctors and medications that maybe He won’t …
And then where does that leave me?
I’ve been ‘told off’ a few times over the last few years by well meaning people who feel like I am not trusting Jesus enough for my healing. Or that I should just not ‘claim it’ as mentioned above … but as my good friend Wendy Beechward says ‘its not a lottery ticket where you can just pop along to the shop and claim the prize’.
I’ve stopped asking people to just pray for my healing now.
I mean, don’t get me wrong, please do pray for it if you feel inclined, and I know I have trusted people who pray often for me to be well, and would, like myself love nothing more than to see it happen, and I am SO thankful for that, and occasionally I might seek prayer myself solely for healing BUT I also need more than anything right now prayer for managing. Learning to live with my illnesses and the life changing effect they have on me. Learning to accept my limitations and a different way of life. Learning to accept that this is long term unless God does do a miracle (which I totally believe and know God can do, but lets face it, they are not every day occurrences are they?) …
So where is my hope you may ask? It makes me sound pretty pessimistic eh? Sure …
I get it, it doesn’t sound very hopeful does it? It perhaps doesn’t sound like I have much hope that God will heal me … well the thing is I KNOW He will.
I KNOW GOD WILL HEAL ME.
EVENTUALLY. It just might not be in my earthly life time.
See, my hope is in Jesus.
My hope is not in Jesus healing me. Or Jesus making me well again.
My hope is in Jesus.
In Him alone.
Not what He can do for me.
My hope is in Jesus and that when I die, be it sooner rather than later, or as a 90 year old I will go to glory with Him, and be seated at His right hand, spotless. Clean. Healed.
For there will be no sickness or pain. There will be no tears or sadness. Or anguish.
Or confusion. Or any of the other things that sometimes this journey brings with it.
My HOPE IS IN JESUS, the One and only who has redeemed my soul, and given me a NEW life, and bought me back from the brink of darkness and death emotionally, because despite my current black days because life is a challenge, and the depression I seem to currently be struggling with, compared to 9 years ago when I had just left London …. well, wow! I am not the same person. And that is because of Jesus.
My hope is in Jesus, the one who loves me, and sees me as His child, and who I see as my Father, who can do immeasurably more than I can even imagine, in this life time and the next.
See, I see hope as this thing, this thing that is so huge, so gigantic that I cannot even properly explain, and that actually when I spend time reflecting on it or writing about it as I am doing right now it makes my body tingle and excitement rise.
I cant tell you what it fully feels like.
Or what it looks like.
Or how big it is.
Just that its this thing which is infinitely bigger than myself and anything else I can imagine.
And its a pretty damn fine thing to have.
But it really is just Jesus.
So the next time someone tells me I don’t have hope or enough of it, or that I should hope more especially when it comes to my health, I will direct them to this blog maybe …
I’ve come to the end of what I want to say, and I’m aware it probably comes across as a ramble and that I could have put it so much more succinctly than I have but … this is it.
For now anyway.
If you have managed to read this through to the end, thank you for taking the time to listen to me, and feel free to drop me a line – would be lovely to hear from you!!