I had two different questions last week that had almost the exact same answer. One was from a friend who is experiencing a downpour from the Lord, but identified some fear lurking in the shadows. You know, the “other shoe is about to fall” fear that the devil loves to torment us with? I hate that. It can be paralyzing. She asked how to prepare. Was there some class in “Warrior 101?”
As an aside, what if the other shoe did fall? Is God not the Author of that as well? Is He not strong enough?
But the other question came from a person who is dealing with a severe illness in his family. He asked what to do. But the answer that flowed out to both of them had more to do with a Who than a What. Here is my response as related to when my youngest daughter was critically ill for 4 years. I will fill you in on details later.
“I know how tough these days must be. I have really had to process with the Lord how to respond to you. I learned so much about the Lord, and from the Lord, during this very hard season.
I don’t think I have actually taken the time to write the story out. So I will try to highlight the take aways from that season.
1) God alone is sovereign. We tend to dismiss things in life: money, health, relationships, circumstances. But He holds all things together, and in Him we move and have our being. This sickness brought that reality home in a whole new way. God had the RIGHT to do whatever He wanted, and would STILL be acknowledged as Good. But also because He is sovereign, He is always working on our behalf. He is not a distant God; but right here, right now. One of the many intercessors during this season had this word from the Lord for us, and for Charis: “God is not doing something TO you, he is depositing something IN you.” This journey with Him would be a foundational piece of our story and HER story. That brought us great courage.
God doesn’t waste anything.
2) The doctors are not greater than God. I had to learn to listen to what GOD said rather than what they said. They were “practicing” medicine. He was the Healer. Many times they gave her meds for her detriment. Literally. God would instruct what to listen to and what to ignore. Also, when the Lord told me that He was going to heal Charis, the doctors scoffed. Literally. I had to decide who I would stand on. God or man. It is a tough, tough road.
Clearly, God was right. The docs had her diagnosed as lifelong meds, allergies and food restrictions. Today she walks in restored health.
3) The body is connected to the spirit. “Confess your sins to one another that you may be healed,” James says. Chuck and I did much inventory of our lives to remove any “authority” we had given the evil one to torment us and Charis. We believe God broke strongholds during this season. I would pray for the home and marriage. That was a root issue in our case, and perhaps yours.
4) I learned how to pray in earnest. I learned out of desperation how to sing songs of deliverance, to bang on the doors of heaven for healing. I grew faith like never before to believe in the God who loved me and my daughter, even when the circumstances did not align with His voice. I was in the Word often, asking for guidance and leading.
5) I began to expect the supernatural. Before this, I heard about it, thought about it, sort of wished for it. Now I HAD to have it. She had to have it. We and the community around us have a stronger testimony that Our God Saves because of what we have seen and heard.
6) I learned to let go. Living with death as a real possibility at times, taught me more than I can write. I became a more grateful person.
7) This is an invitation to intimacy. It is one thing to know OF God. It is radically different to KNOW Him. I became firmly convinced that every single thing in our lives, good or bad, is His call to see Him in the middle of it. He wants to walk with us, and will do whatever it takes to get our attention. Whatever it takes. And believe me, He got our attention. Still I can tell you, I wouldn’t trade this season for anything. I am forever changed.
May the Lord Himself be your Comfort, Healer and Strength.”