Tuesday, June 23, 2009

On Healing.

I know that I have been terribly negligent on writing. My apologizes.

As of now, there are roughly six weeks left for us here in Haiti. Two weeks of that will be with a group that is coming the end of July. We are very excited about their coming! In the meantime, I am trying to move myself into the “going home” mode. Which, basically, means that one must start putting all the little things to memory. All those parts of life here that have become “matter a fact” but will not always be here to enjoy.

Now, as for other things. I have been meaning for some time to write out this “documentary” of my physical/spiritual journey from this time of my life. And yes, the physical and spiritual are connected. Strongly.

Since being here I have gone on three different fasts and the results of all have been very encouraging. The first was a vegetable only fast (when our garden was in high production) and I immediately began feeling better than I have in over a year. I dropped a couple pounds but more than that, my temperature (that I’ve been keeping for some time- to record my non-existent cycles and also to keep track of how my thyroid is functioning) went from the terribly low number of 96.5 or 6 to 96.7 or 8. Yes, still low, but going the right direction!

I also, at that point, began taking regularly- three different supplements. The first was “Female” by Dr. . Tastes like licorice, which I hate, but when it’s in a bit of juice, it’s not the end of the world. The second was vitamin B tablets and the third, about 5 kelp tablets. Before this, I had taken 1 a day- but suddenly realized: The bottle says one a day because that’s what most people need- I am extremely deficient in iodine. I should probably take more!

That fast lasted about 1 week. At which time, we made a trip to Les Cayes, where we stopped at a restaurant. At that point, I was still very shy in this society- and ended up ordering the only thing in English on the menu. A sandwich and French fries. A Haitian with us didn’t eat the rice and beans that came with his meal and I would have given anything to just have that. Mostly because just a little bit of all the grease on my plate (my husband finished everything for me) made my stomach cramp awfully. After that I tried to add in rice and beans on a semi-regular basis. Eventually, all gardens ceased producing and I could barely get enough vegetables to eat some once a day, let alone only vegetables. (There hadn’t been rain in about three months at that point)

About then I began feeling poorly again. I got cranky and depressed. So, after talking to my husband, I went on a cleansing fast. Which meant, I had tea, one smoothie a day (He didn’t want me getting too weak, so I made a banana smoothie with milk each morning) and a bowl of potassium broth (made with potato peelings, carrot peelings, onion, hot pepper and a bit of salt- then strained). I did this for three days. I felt wonderful. My temperature sky-rocketed to 97.5! And, of all things… I had a period. Spotty and abnormal, but the first one that my body had done without any medication in a year!

Something else happened during that fast: See, when you replace food with God’s word and with prayer…He usually meets you there. He’s not a god to be commanded about at will- but he IS a God that comes to help us in our weakness. I should also explain- before I began the fast, I was reading a book called “The Real Faith for Healing” and, honestly, I was having a hard time understanding it. The author talks some about the woman with the issue of blood, who touched Jesus’ robe and was healed. So, in my prayer journal, I wrote:

Jesus, my Jesus. I cannot go on without a touch from you. I cannot be the woman you created me to be without a touch. I need you, Jesus. Don’t pass me by. I am reaching out- stretching my fingers to touch even the hem of your robe. I will not eat food- I will cry out for you instead. Be my strength, be my nourishment- for you are what I desire above all. Nothing else is even worth looking at- all my dreams are but burned out ashes without you. Jesus, I say it again- please do not pass me by! Touch me!

And so began the fast! It only lasted for three days because by the third day- I understood. My biggest struggle was with the places in God’s word where he talks about healing. By my stripes you are healed. Yet, here I was, with this broken, un-functioning body! And I was asking for healing. Why do some receive and others don’t? Then came the revelation.

During my quiet time I tried to take extra time to just listen to God, as part of the fast. And the third day, he asked me a question. He said, “What do you think healing looks like to me?” And for awhile, I didn’t answer. I just meditated. If I was to stand before God- completely healed- what would it look like?

Now, this was a interesting twist! Not stand before a mirror. Not stand before another person. Stand before God. What would I look like?

That same day, I was down at the hospital and a lady came in with her twin babies. When we first came they were terribly mal-nourished, but good food had picked up their weight and their skin was returning to the nice soft baby skin that it should be. I sat for awhile on the hospital steps, just holding them. I didn’t have energy for a lot else! Now, mind you, every time we see these people, they offer us their kids. “Take to New York.” They tell us. We shake our heads and say, “Pa kabob.” (Can’t.) And, somehow, when I was there- holding babies whose parents would gladly give them away- and thinking about the fact that I might never have my own… it came to me.

If I was to stand before God, completely healed, what I look like? I would look whole.

I wouldn’t be staring down at empty arms, desperate for a child. I wouldn’t be depressed. I wouldn’t be confused. I wouldn’t feel like there was a part of me missing.

No, I would be standing straight, with my eyes, not on myself, but on the Christ. My heart would be overflowing with joy. My mind would be filled with thoughts of Him. I would be whole.

When God promised healing, he didn’t promise a perfectly functioning body. He didn’t! He promised wholeness. He was beaten and nailed upon a cross so that we didn’t have to live incomplete. This includes our spiritual bodies- that were dead and in him are alive. And also, our physical- that are so dependant on our surroundings for comfort and happiness, but in him can be joy-filled and whole DESPITE our surroundings.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I believe that God still does miraculous healings- just like he did in the Bible. He is the same God- yesterday, today and forever. But I think that our “wholeness” doesn’t come from those miracles. For some, it does! For others- like, say, Joni Erickson Tada, wholeness came in the form of a ministry and passion. Our wholeness can come in many different ways. For some- with my physical trouble- wholeness may come in a job that uses their gifts and abilities to help others… or in a miraculous conception… or through adoption… or through a ministry. Our wholeness will look as different as we are from each other. Each person unique. Each person a separate entity in God’s eyes.

Now, if you were counting- you’ll see that only accounts for two of the fasts. The third I am doing right now. The reason: with all the gifts from back home of candy and snack foods… my body started acting strange again! I think I really am “allergic” (per say) to anything artificial. Flavorings. Sweeteners. Whatever. So, I decided to do another cleansing fast. This time, to hopefully set my body into a regulated diet that cuts out the things that are hurting it. The good part- it should be different this time. Because this time I’m NOT trying to eat certain foods to bring myself wholeness! I’m already whole. This is just because my body is a temple of the Lord, and I want to treat it right.

1 comment:

lizzykristine @ Uplifted Eyes said...

I came over to your blog from YLCF and had to say -- what a great post! Thanks for sharing. :)

I've spent quite a bit of time on the sick & infertile track, too. So many times we've been told that if I would just find and confess some "hidden sin" or "have true faith," I would be healed.... (Sympathizing with Job, here ;)

But the Lord doesn't always work that way. I believe that He has worked good in and through my life that would be impossible if I were 100% healthy. He has taken what was meant for evil and turning it into good. He has opened doors through the loss and asked me to be content with that loss for the sake of glory to God.

Just yesterday He was reminding me again to focus on Him -- that is healthiness. So your post was very timely; thanks. :)