Since Easter is next week I thought it would be appropriate to share my testimony of faith:
I was born with a rare medical condition. The doctors did not know if I was going to survive. Having great faith my parents allowed the doctors to give me an experimental drug and it saved my life. My parents told me I was one of God’s miracles.
We went to church every Sunday and Wednesday. My parents served on several church committees and we were members of a Methodist Church. When I was in the Youth Group I would attend occasional weekend retreats at the Methodist Church campground. My parents would also attend Women and Men’s retreats there. When my father returned from one weekend retreat he bought me a New Testament Study Bible which helped one witness to others. I began reading this book each night. I began praying each night as well. This brought me closer to God. I realized that I truly believed the words in the book. I was surprised because I always thought I was a believer but I had never developed a relationship with God. Now I had one and could proclaim without a doubt that I was a Christian.
God continued to bless my family with miracles. When I was ten my father was diagnosed with Stage 4 Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma. He went through 2 years of chemotherapy and survived! Nine years later the cancer recurred. This time the doctors did a Stem Cell transplant. They gave him chemotherapy and radiation until he had no white or red blood cells. They then re-infused his body with stem cells to create a new set of blood cells in his body. During the process, he spiked a fever of 104 degrees. The fever continued for several days. Sunday came and the nurse told my mother that if the fever did not go down soon his body would start to shut down, he would die. It was almost 11am when the nurse left the room. Just then, a friend from church called my mother. Our friend updated the church on my father’s condition and at the end of the service, around 12:00, everyone stood in circle around the sanctuary and prayed together for my father. The nurse came back and took my father’s temperature at about 12:20 and it had gone down to almost normal! It was a true miracle! James 5:16 says, “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” The bible, written thousands of years ago is still relevant! Our church congregation prayed for my father and he was healed!
God is still blessing my life even today. As I have gotten older my medical issues have persisted. Since my youth I have been diagnosed with Diabetes, Thyroid disease, Psoriatic Arthritis, Fibromyalgia and Depression. I recall one instance during my second encounter with Depression. I was in the hospital and my head was spinning out of control. I was having a psychotic episode due to the Depression. I didn’t want to be in the hospital. I was fighting because I did not want to take the medicine. My brain was tricking me into thinking I was fine. When I finally figured out I wasn’t going home I asked my husband to bring me reading material because I had nothing to keep me occupied. He brought me an inspirational book. It reminded me of Psalm 55:22, “Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.” I thought, “How did I forget about God? I have been trying to fight this on my own. I must trust that I am where I am supposed to be, in the hospital to get better.” From there, I started taking medication and following the therapy. I was soon released from the hospital. Psalm 34: 17-20 states, “When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of their troubles. The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous but the Lord delivers him out of them all.” I was crushed but God gave me courage to face my troubles and move forward.
I have had a few more episodes of Depression in the past few years and each time I learned from the experience. I am now stable with most of my medical issues and I continue to learn how to cope with the multiple disorders. My afflictions are many but with God by my side I can endure them and look forward to the future.
“...those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31)