There has been something running through my head for some time now and I feel compelled to share it. A few years ago, I had a stroke or two and it left me with headaches and speech and balance issues. But these physical circumstances did something for me that I could not achieve while healthy; they drew me closer to Jesus in a way that I could never have imagined. In this struggle that affects my physical body, I was healed from the inside out.
I received Christ before the stroke. I sought in prayer and study, but when I had the stroke something changed that I cannot put into words. There was a strange calmness that came over me. Now I am not saying that there were not moments that I did not feel fear. Things could have been bad. There were times too when I was angry with the why me moments. I hung on to my motorcycle for 2 years unwilling to let go of that past. But finally, I did let go and I did take a full grip of the future.
Prayer and Study
You know I had time for the Word and Pray before the stroke. But it always was second to work and family. There are still times today that the world will distract me and I will let it slip. But I know when I do that I short myself more than anything else and I disappoint God who gave everything for me. It is not because I need to study to be saved but the Word is a gift. It is the path by which I can, with prayerful study, grow closer to my God, my Lord,
I pray every day. I try to study as well. I am not always up to writing because of some setbacks, but that is getting better and my prayer is that the fog will clear a bit and make it possible to write again every day. But I leave that in God’s hands and I pray that I might listen and obey. He has shown me so much in His word and I am thankful.
One of the lessons I cling to is that everything in this life is temporary.
2 Corinthians 4:17 – 5:5
Paul and Peter both talked about the temporary nature of the things on earth. One of the verses I like is 2 Corinthians 4:17-5:5
2 Corinthians 4:17 – 5:5 (ESV) 17 For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
Our Heavenly Dwelling
1 For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, 3 if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked. 4 For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened—not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. 5 He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.
Yes, I know I crossed chapters, but this was originally a big letter and I feel that the beginning of Chapter 5 fills it out for me.
I read this passage and my heart sings. God is preparing us for things “beyond all comparison”. Now I have used those phrases to describe amazing things on earth like a great musician or motorcycle rider, but when I think of the God that spoke the universe into existence my brain shakes a bit. That is truly something beyond comparison.
Then I look at the beginning of chapter 5 and I think; ” You know, I can handle things a bit longer in this tent. It’s not that bad. It lets me see and do quite a bit.”
Then I think of Paul and what he said the Corinthians near the end of his second letter.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10
Paul had ailments too. I have no clue what they were, but He asked Jesus to remove them three times, and Jesus chose not to and Jesus told him He would not remove them in verses 9-10 in chapter 12
2 Corinthians 12:9-10 (ESV) 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10 For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
I have read this passage so many times and I take great comfort in it because it is such a powerful truth regarding weakness, humility, and strength.
I was 10 feet tall and bullet proof. I did not realize how independent I was until I was not independent anymore. There was little if anything I was afraid of and few situations I would not walk straight into without consulting God. But I realized that is not what He wanted of me. He wanted me to put all my hope in Him.
I thought of the passages. Paul had seen so much. How easy it would be for pride to take hold. But God chose an infirmity to humble him. I am not saying He did that to me. My old lifestyle did that to me. I had a temper and I was reckless and strong willed. I was a hard charger and sometimes I could be cruel. That attitude, along with a life of excess, lead to the stroke. God has just used it to His purpose, and every word in that passage I am content with. God has shown me how to be content in my circumstances.
He has shown me this contentment and I surprise myself. Now I have not always got it under control. Yesterday the Sonata Pat, my wife drives, had the engine blow in the driveway. I was freaked, but much less so than in the old days. I had to cling to Philippians 4:11-13
Philippians 4:11-13 (ESV) 11 Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12 I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. 13 I can do all things through him who strengthens me.
I know that I do not always do well with this. Big expenses are big and we are on a fixed income, but I pray and I know that panic and frustration will not change my situation. Prayer will. I also remember another passage from Paul about striving for the prize
This passage helps me keep all this in perspective. Because I still get upset over things and I still can find myself worrying. But passages like this one remind me that I am still human and I still must strive to grow closer to my Savior and Lord Jesus.
Philippians 3:12-14 (ESV) 12 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
But this passage kind of brings me back to the beginning and the title of this post. I am Healed. It begins in 2 Corinthians 5:16-17
2 Corinthians 5:16-17
The thing I have come to know is that regardless of the condition of my physical body regardless of the challenges that may exist. I was healed the day I accepted Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior.
It hit me when I was reading this verse in 2 Corinthians.
2 Corinthians 5:16-17 (ESV) 16 From now on, therefore, we regard no one according to the flesh. Even though we once regarded Christ according to the flesh, we regard him thus no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.
My body is the temporary tent he talks about in 2 Corinthians 5 and when I think of that this is just a small hindrance that Christ has healed. I am just in recovery. There are many passages that speak to this, like Romans 6:6-11, but this blog is getting long so I will close with the one for me is one of the most powerful.
Regardless of the condition my condition is in, (old rock and roll music reference), I am healed. I have eternal life. How can I be so sure? Jesus tells me so in John 17
John 17:3 (ESV) 3 And this is eternal life, that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.
I believe in God the Father and Jesus and the Holy Spirit. I seek to draw closer to them every day in prayerful study of the Holy Word of God. I trust in the absolute truth of His Word. I know Him and seek to know Him better every day.
Father, I pray a prayer of thanks for your Holy Word. I praise you for all your provision. Lord, I know that by your stripes I have been healed.
Lord, I pray that you might draw us to you taking advantage of any circumstances we might find ourselves in. Lord, I love you and Praise you. To you be all the glory, in Jesus name I pray.