And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. Ephesians 5:2
Nine years ago today, the Lord miraculously healed me of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome (declared a miracle by my fibromyalgia physician). For about 15 years, I was a walking pharmacy … pills to deal with the pain, pills to make me go to sleep, pills to wake me up, pills to counteract the side effects of the other pills.
Bright lights, loud noises, and strong fragrances bothered me. My husband, Keith, stopped wearing cologne during those years.
Most department stores place the perfume counters at the main entrances. I had to hold my breath, walk like a racer past the perfume counters (not easy for a fibromyalgia patient), and hope that I walked far enough to avoid a whiff of fragrance.
I feared getting into an elevator. At times, I was on the verge of a flair by the time the door opened, and I could escape the heavy perfume.
Fear, pain, fatigue, hopelessness, and brain fog vanished on November 21, 2010.
Then came the lessons.
A few weeks ago, Keith and I traveled with a group of students to Europe. We visited several countries and businesses. One of those businesses was Galimard Parfumeur en 1747 in Grasse, France. We entered the building, and the fragrance was bold and heavenly.
No holding my breath this time. No anxiety.
In contrast, I was breathing in deeply, smiling.
When we returned to the bus, I realized that this visit was another confirmation of God’s healing, His miracle. Praise the Lord!
9 Lessons Learned
- Our Healer still heals today. God told Israel, “I am the Lord your healer” in Exodus 15:26. From time-to-time, the prophets healed, and Jesus healed blind eyes, deaf ears, lepers’ spots, and feverish bodies. He even raised the dead. God used the apostles to heal, and He uses you and me to heal, James 5:14-15. Peter writes that by Jesus’ stripes, we are healed … healed of our sin and healed of our sicknesses, for Jesus bore our sins and our diseases on the cross, Isaiah 53:5. Finally, all will be healed. Revelation 21 tells us that every tear will be wiped away, and there will be no pain.
- Our Eternal Father heals in His perfect timing. Isaiah writes that those who wait, or hope, in the Lord shall renew their strength. Some receive healing on earth, and all who are His followers receive healing in eternity. The Father impressed upon Keith and me that He would heal me. That was two years before He healed me. Two years of thanksgiving and pressing into the Lord.
- Our Omnipresent Lord is with us. Psalm 23 tells us that even in the valley of the shadow of death, God is with us. The Psalmist reflects upon the presence of God in Psalm 139. The Psalmist writes, that wherever he goes, God is with him. Whether he ascends to heaven or descends into the depths of Sheol, God is with him.
The Lord was with us as we talked with our doctor after the healing.
He brought Keith home from a work-related trip just in time to take me to the hospital for emergency surgery (side effects from the fibromyalgia drugs got the better of me that day.) In all of the trials, God was present and carried us when necessary.
- Our Comforter directs our focus. Jesus told His disciples that when the Holy Spirit comes, in addition to convicting the world of sin, righteousness, and truth, He will guide the followers of Jesus into all truth, John 16:13.
Some of the sweetest times I had with the Lord were those nights when I couldn’t sleep because of the pain. I would go to the couch, open up the Psalms, and prayerfully read. David cried out in anguish, sometimes frustration, sometimes anger, and he recounted his troubles to the Lord. Many of the Psalms begin with anguish and end with praise because David took his eyes off his troubles and placed them on the majesty of God.
- Our Source of Strength hears our prayers. Psalm 4 and Psalm 28 assure us that the Lord hears our cries and that He is our strength.
Keith and I prayed for years for healing. Our prayers changed from begging to thanking, and on the night of the Lord’s healing, my prayer changed again, “I don’t care about healing anymore, I just want more of You!” That night, God healed me, AND He continues to give me more of Him.
- Our Sustainer gives us other believers to support us in times of need. The church prayed for Peter when he was in prison, and he showed up at their door, Acts 12:5. Paul frequently asked for prayer and told the church that he was praying for them, 2 Corinthians 1:11. Paul also writes that we are to encourage one another and build them up, 1 Thessalonians 5:14. We are to pray for one another, James 5:16.
Keith was in the Air Force for 22 years; consequently, we moved all over the world. I lost track of a high school good friend, Emily. One day after I had been healed, she found me via Facebook. We renewed our friendship. She did not know about my fibromyalgia and the Lord’s healing. After we had talked several times, she said, “You’re going to think I’m crazy, but I’ve been praying for you all these years – that the Lord would heal you.” She told me about a dream she had, accurately describing a time that I was in the hospital. For 40 years, she prayed for me without knowing the details but knowing that the Holy Spirit had prompted her to pray. I had the pleasure of telling her that her prayers were answered and that the Lord had healed me. She is now in heaven, and I can’t wait to see her. I needed her prayers and the prayers of others. I needed Keith’s support as a caregiver. We need each other.
- Our Almighty God requires us to be courageous. After Moses died, God told Joshua that He had given the Promised Land to the Israelites and that Joshua was to lead them into the land. God told Joshua to be very courageous because God was with him, Joshua 1:9.
After the Lord healed me, a friend asked me, “What if Sunday night was a placebo, and the symptoms come back?” It took courage to talk to the doctor and agree on what medications to start cutting. It took even greater courage to stop taking those medications. It came down to the question, “Do you believe God?” God rewards those who step out in faith.
- Our Great Equipper prepares us for amazing ministries. Preparing good works for His children to accomplish and equipping them for work that they would never have thought they were qualified for is the delight of the Lord, Ephesians 2:10. Sometimes, the equipping involves pain and trails. But we are to count it all joy because trials produce endurance, and endurance makes us whole, James 1:3.
I count it all joy now that I endured fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue because I understand pain and can relate to others who are enduring pain and trials. God orchestrates divine appointments for me on an increasing frequency They usually involve conversations about coping with trials.
- Our Promise Giver requires us to possess His promises. God told Moses that when the Israelites crossed over the Jordan into the land that He had given to the Israelites – the Promised Land – that they were to possess it, Numbers 33:53. Possessing it would require battles. But the battles were God’s battles. He promised Joshua that He would be with him wherever he went, Joshua 1:9.
God gave me healing, but there were naysayers, even nurses, who said the healing was just a placebo effect, and that my fibromyalgia would return. This may sound odd … I was scared. I knew how to be sick, but I did not know how to be healthy. It was up to me to believe God and walk in faith as I actively possessed health.
Six months after the Lord’s healing, I climbed half-way up the Great Wall of China. Half-way because the bus was scheduled to leave. Impossible in the condition I was in on the day of healing. I hope to return to climb the Great Wall fully and run on top of it praising the Lord.
They who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:31
I am constantly blessed by the fragrance of God’s promises and the lessons they bring.
Abba Father, we are overwhelmed by Your majesty, Your artistry, Your lovingkindness, and Your presence. Thank You for all that You are, all that You do, and all that You enfold. Your holiness and grace astonish us, and Your goodness and compassion captivate us. Thank You for Your great and precious promises. Help us to learn how to possess them for your honor and glory. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
What promises from God have you possessed? What did you learn?
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