It's easy to sing
When there's nothing to bring me down
But what will I say
When I'm held to the flame
Like I am right now
I know You're able and I know You can
Save through the fire with Your mighty hand
But even if You don't my hope is You alone
~Even If by MercyMe
Last month I realized that I was mad at God. I contracted lyme disease this past July, and ever since I have been in physical pain about eighty percent of the time. I have a few good days where my pain is minimal and I can get things done. And then the rest of the time my muscles feel like I ran a marathon in my sleep. It is a deep ache that doesn't go away. My joints hurt, but it shifts around what joints bother me. Some days I limp around because my foot hurts. Other days I can barely grasp my hair brush or a pencil because my hands are so sore. Some times it's hard for me to bend down or stand up for any length of time because my back is so stiff and sore.
I have been to the doctor numerous times. I have seen a specialist. I have two more appointments on the schedule with two different specialists. I have had blood tests, ultrasounds, nerve and muscle conduction tests. More blood tests that I requested the doctor run. My doctor joked that I was like a person with a quiver full of arrows that I am shooting into the air hoping that one will find its target.
I have prayed. I have been prayed for. Prayed over. Prayed some more. And after months of nothing changing, I started to sympathize with the people you read about who just give up on life because the pain is too much, the struggle is too hard. How could I live like this for the rest of my life if this is what it is going to be like for the rest of my life? This isn't living. This sucks! So I stopped praying. I set my Bible on a shelf. And on the rare day when I did try praying, it was empty and fruitless. One night I laid in bed next to Hubby and confessed that I no longer had hope for a healing. It was time for me to accept that and learn to live life with my new normal.
Last week I had this overwhelming desire to ask Hubby to pray for me. Once again, I laid down in the bed next to Hubby (all our deep discussions seem to happen there for some reason) and told him that I needed him to put on his pastoral hat and help me. I confessed that I was mad at God for not healing me. That I was starting to wonder if He was even real. That all my attempts to pray felt empty and left me feeling even worse off than when I started. I told him that I didn't need him to fix me, I just needed him to pray for me. So he did.
Quite honestly, I didn't expect anything to change. My hope was pretty much in the toilet. The next day I came across a blog post that was like a complete slap to the face. It is titled Even if He Doesn't. Even if God doesn't rescue me, He is still good. He is still able. Even if I never live another pain-free day in my life, God is still able to heal me. He is still good. My hope must be in Him alone. No matter what. A little spark lit up in me.
A new song just started playing on the radio. Even If by MercyMe. I have been playing it on repeat. Because my soul needs to hear it. Over and over. Even if You don't (heal me, rescue me, save me) My hope is You alone. It is well with my soul.
I dusted off my Bible and started praying again. God must have broken through a wall because praying no longer feels empty but is life-giving. I'm not healed. I'm actually sitting here with aching legs because it's an aching muscle sort of day. God hasn't changed my physical body at all. So it is a good thing that my hope is once again in God-for Who He Is-and not only in what He will do for me.