What are you noticing as you wait on God?

Gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, ‘Which,’ He said, ‘you heard of from Me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now. … but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you,  Acts 1:4-8a

Jesus told His followers to wait in Jerusalem for the promise of the Holy Spirit. This promise would give them power.

His followers waited in expectation on the promise in the Upper Room in Jerusalem, but their waiting was active. Acts tells us that they devoted themselves to prayer. They also appointed a replacement for Judas.

After the Lord impressed upon Keith and me that I would be healed of fibromyalgia, we waited in expectation, too.

We actively waited.

  • We prayed.
  • We studied the Bible.
  • We studied books on healing.
  • I worked with my doctor, and we tried new medications.
  • I tried new techniques of coping with the pain and fatigue.
  • We thanked God for the healing.

But it took time; days, weeks, months, and even years.

“Did the Lord promise to heal me?”

I’m sure that the followers of Jesus waited in that Upper Room waiting … waiting … expecting … wondering if they heard Jesus correctly.

“Did Jesus really tell us to wait?”

In Waiting on God, Andrew Murray wrote:

Come, and however feeble you feel, just wait in His presence. As a feeble, sickly invalid is brought out into the sunshine to let its warmth go through him, come with all that is dark and cold in you into the sunshine of God’s holy, omnipotent love, and sit and wait there, with the one thought: Here I am, in the sunshine of His love. As the sun does its work in the weak one who seeks its rays, God will do His work in you.

My prayer for you:

Father, we are waiting on Your healing presence in our lives. We are waiting in expectation of Your promises. Teach us to bask in Your light and all powerful love. Work in us Your plans for us, Your healing touch. Here we are, waiting for the power You are pouring out on Your children. Thank you, Father of Lights. To You be the glory!

Share your insights:

As you wait on the Lord, focus on His glory, His power, His promises, and share what He has shown you.

A friend prayed without ceasing – 40 years later she learned of miracles

Twisted, snagged, and bent, like the Joshua Tree, we reach to heaven and give God glory.

We have not ceased to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so that you will walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, to please Him in all respects, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; 1 Colossians 1:9-10

On August 28, 2011, I received an email,  “This is a voice from your past.” I had lost contact from a dear friend in high school.

She caught me up on her life in the first email, and I caught her up on my life in the next email, including the fact that the Lord had healed me of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome in 2010.

The next email from her brought me to tears as I praised God for her faithfulness to the Holy Spirit‘s urging to pray for me throughout all these years.

We had lost touch the last several years of high school. When I was 19, I ended up in the hospital, and there was a possibility that I would die from one of the tests that the doctors were performing. She had a dream that she ran through the hospital urging everyone to pray for me. When she woke up, she was very discomforted and only told a few people.

“But, the bottom line is, as weird as this sounds, through the years I have continued to pray for your health.

Prayer works! James tells us:

The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. Then he prayed again, and the sky poured rain and the earth produced its fruit. James 5:16-18

Thank you, Elaine, for praying without ceasing for my health. Throughout the 40+ years of your praying, the Lord has worked great and mighty miracles in my family’s lives, including healing me and renewing my strength beyond what I had ever hoped for–all for the works that He had prepared for me to do from before the foundation of the world. Thank you for obeying the prompting of the Holy Spirit and praying earnestly.

My prayer for you:

Our Father in Heaven, You alone are great, and Your Holy Spirit urges us to pray beyond our understanding. Bless our prayers and our spirits as we follow Your bidding. Thank You for great saints who persevere even when they do so in faith. Guide us in Your ways and teach us to pray without ceasing. Thank you, Father.

What are you fervently praying for?

Jesus heals and renews your youth

Celebrating feeling great in Vienna. Photo by Michael Blinci

 Bless the Lord, O my soul, And all that is within me, bless His holy name.Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget none of His benefits;Who pardons all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases;Who redeems your life from the pit, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion; Who satisfies your years with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the eagle. Psalm 103: 1-5

Saturday, Keith and I returned to the hotel in Anaheim where I attended a fibromyalgia conference about six years ago. I was in so much pain because of the “hard bed” that Keith got in his car after work, drove a couple of hours and brought me my feather bed. The next morning, he got up and drove back to work. That was before the Lord healed me of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue.
Saturday night, we slept there again, minus the feather bed, minus the pain.
Sunday morning, I participated in an aerobic flash mob dance at Angel Stadium.
What I have learned since that night I was healed, November 21, 2010, is that people are hungry to hear that our awesome God works in people’s lives today, that He  heals, that He works miracles, and more importantly, that He loves them and He paid the price, so that they could enjoy Him forever.
God works in our lives for a purpose. That purpose is to point people to Jesus, so that the world will see our good works and glorify Him.
Simon the Leper (obviously healed by Jesus) hosted Jesus in his home; the blind man told others that Jesus healed him, and Peter’s mother got up and served Jesus. All proofs that Jesus healed, that Jesus had compassion, and that He was able to work in their lives–for a purpose, for service.
My prayer for you:
May the Lord restore your youth as you actively wait on Him. May He renew your strength as you mount up on wings like eagles. May you walk and run and not grow weary. May you point others to Jesus as you revel in what He has done for you and is working in you for tomorrow. Praise the Lord!

When the Healer touched my pain

And a leper came to Jesus, beseeching Him and falling on his knees before Him, and saying, “If You are willing, You can make me clean.” Moved with compassion, Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, “I am willing; be cleansed.” Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed. Mark 1:40-42

There was no cure for leprosy. Lepers were considered unclean, and they lived away from others. When they walked down the street, they cried out “unclean.” People moved to the other side of the road.

Isolation. Loneliness.

Desperation gripped this leper. He had no other hope than this man they called Jesus. This leper did the unthinkable; he came close to this righteous Teacher, this Healer and begged Him for healing.

If You are willing …

He wasn’t sure that Jesus was willing to heal him, although he had healed others. Leprosy was a symbol of sin, and this Jesus was considered holy.

There is no cure for fibromyalgia. I wasn’t sure that Jesus wanted to heal me of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. I thought that it was my place in life to reflect grace through my sickness and pain. After all, Jesus did not heal the entire world. Maybe I was one who was to endure until my death.

You can make me clean.

No doubt. Jesus was capable of making the leper clean.

Jesus was able to heal me.

Moved with compassion, Jesus stretched out His hand and touched him, and said to him, “I am willing;

The God of the Universe was moved with compassion for this leper. He stretched out His hand and touched the disease; Holy touched disease and sin. Purity touched the unclean.

My Creator was moved with compassion and told my husband and me two years before I was healed, that He was willing to heal me.

Unlike the leper, I had not reached my desperation point. Jesus had a divine appointment for us, and in those two years, we grew closer to Jesus and to each other. For me, I had to get to the point of desperation, so that I would boldly march up to Jesus and drop to my knees. Unlike the leper, I told Jesus that I no longer cared about healing; I just wanted more of Him.

Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cleansed.

Jesus touched the leper, and sickness immediately left him, but more importantly, he was cleansed–cleansed from sin.

When I was at my lowest point, Jesus had compassion upon me and touched me. Immediately, the fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue left me, and I was freed. Freed of pain and sickness. Freed to accomplish the works that God had prepared before the foundation of the world for me to do as a healthy woman. Freed to soak up more of Him.

My prayer for you:

Compassionate Father, You are willing and able to touch each life. Have compassion on Your servants and touch their lives with whatever they need to become the men and women that You are equiping them to be. Wrap Your loving wings around them and make Your presence known to them. Renew their strength and restore their love for You and others.

The Lord be gracious to you and bless you.

Blessings from pain

As He [Jesus] passed by, He saw a man blind from birth.  And His disciples asked Him, “ Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he would be born blind?” Jesus answered, “It was neither that this man sinned, nor his parents; but it was so that the works of God might be displayed in him. John 9:1-3

Have you reflected upon this and thought this might apply to you? It applies to me. I was a sickly child. Hospitalized many times in my teens. Later, I developed fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. For years, I suffered and cried out to God.

I found many blessings in the pain and fatigue.

The greatest blessing came to me as I lay on our living room couch in the middle of the night in pain. Many nights, I turned to the Psalms and observed David’s agony turn to praise. David taught me to cry out to God and then turn my focus upon God. Gratitude filled my heart as I saw how small my pain was in comparison to how great God is. Those intense, painful moments melted into moments of blessing and love.

I also learned how much my husband of 41 years loved me. He is the embodiment of a servant-leader, giving and caring with no expectation of return. Without the pain and limitations, our relationship would not have been as intimate as it is today.

Blessings from the pain turned into opportunities to minister to others in pain and suffering. Coworkers, family, friends and their friends knew that I had walked a similar path of pain for years and that I understood what they were going through. They also saw a woman who had been delivered from her pain, and they wanted to hear about how I had been healed. They wanted prayer. They wanted compassion. They wanted practical insight in coping with the pain.

I am grateful for the years of pain. The pain opened doors into people’s hearts that would never have been opened without the pain.

This life journey has truly been a gratitude adventure.

My prayer for you:
Great Comforter and Healer, we honor You and praise You for what You are doing in our lives and for who You are. You have promised that You would never leave us nor forsake us. We trust You and lean upon You in these times of trials. Jesus, we thank You for love beyond measure that You bestowed upon us. You were beaten and scourged for us, and by Your stripes we are healed, whether it is today or tomorrow or when You take us home. You hung on the cross to pay the price for our sins, so that we could be with You for eternity. That is the greatest blessing of all. What a friend we have in You, Jesus. Pour out Your Spirit upon us, so that we can point people to You. It is because of You that we have blessings and we can bless others. Thank you. Amen.

Wishing you a gratitude adventure as you contemplate the blessings that we experience in our pain and limitations. We can turn them into opportunities to impact the lives of others.

What are you doing to turn your pain into blessings?

 

What’s God healing/restoring in your life?

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“For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, WHO COMMITTED NO SIN, NOR WAS ANY DECEIT FOUND IN HIS MOUTH; and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed. For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls. 1 Peter 2:21-25

During the time of Nero and the great persecution, Peter writes these words to the church. These words give us hope. Jesus died and took a beating so that we could die to sin and live to righteousness, and somehow, that is attached to being healed, or being made whole.

 “But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5

Commenting on Matthew 8:17, “This was to fulfill what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet: “HE HIMSELF TOOK OUR INFIRMITIES AND CARRIED AWAY OUR DISEASES,” Matthew Henry wrote, “for sin is both the cause and the sting of sickness.”

Before Adam and Eve disobeyed God, there was no sickness. Disease is a result of the fall.

When I suffered from the pain, the brain fog, and the weakness of fibromyalgia, I examined myself many times to find the great sin that caused my sickness. I also wondered why I did not have enough faith to be healed.

I knew that God still healed. Why wasn’t I healed? It had to be some wrong in me.

Bad things happen to good people, to God’s people.  God was proud of Job’s righteousness. Yet, Satan asked for permission to take everything away from Job—his wealth, his children, even his health—and God allowed it for a season. Job’s troubles were not a result of his sin or his actions. They were a result of evil, Satan.

Job was healed, but not through anything he did and not even through his faith in God. God healed him and increased all that Job had by twofold, in God’s perfect timing.

God healed me in His perfect timing, not by my doing, but by His good pleasure. In my weakness, God showed His strength and has given me a work to do, to point people to Jesus and proclaim that God still heals today!

My prayer for you:

May the Great Healer touch your life and make you whole, bestowing His great and precious promises upon you. May you possess all that God has for you and give God the glory.

Please let us know what God is restoring in your life.