I prayed for healing for what felt like an eternity, but in all actuality it had only been 10 months. 10 months of struggling through illness. A illness that robbed a lot from me in a short amount of time. In the end of December 2015 (only 4 short months after bringing the kids home to the states) I was diagnosed with Chronic Idiopathic Urticarial. 10 days after I received a TDAP injection my body and immune system went haywire. I had no idea what I would endure for the next 10 months. I’m glad I didn’t know ahead of time, because I may not have had the strength to get through it.
The months following meant modifying my diet to a list of about 10 acceptable food items my body could “somewhat” tolerate. Taking obscene amounts of prescription drugs, including prednisone and immunosuppressant therapies to try to keep my symptoms at bay. An extreme measure to bring comfort to get through the day with my raging hives and swollen body.
Healing in the Making
After 11 months of seeing specialists, doctors and holistic practitioners, God was doing work in my heart and in my life. I finally started to feel like I was having a breakthrough in my healing. After divine appointments of coming in contact with people who provided answers, I had begun a regiment of holistic healing that really and truly was bringing my body some restoration, but it wasn’t complete. It was until December of 2016 that I would discover what God was doing to bring my complete healing… I was pregnant.
To be honest finding out I was pregnant was the shock of a lifetime. Something my husband and I have both always agreed on is we were never going to pursue conceiving biological children. We knew God put adoption on our hearts and we couldn’t see how a biological child was necessary when adopting more children is on our hearts. We obviously took the necessary precautions to prevent pregnancy, but due to my illness, it was recommended by a doctor to stop taking artificial hormones, as they could be causing a hormonal disturbance. This could be setting off my immune system even further.
Related Post: Believe in the Impossible
Without thinking I did. I was desperate to feel better. I wanted to do anything that could insure that my body would come back into homeostasis. Looking back I can see how God had to deal with my husbands and I stubborn hearts over the control we wanted over our lives and family. After wrapping my head around the shock of this pregnancy, I felt like God was removing layers of a hardened and stubborn heart that was certain it knew better than the God of the universe. HE was pruning me and showing me the intricate plans He had that I couldn’t comprehend. He showed me that my illness was never in vain, but that every moment was purposeful in bringing me to the moment I was in today. The bible speaks a lot about pruning.
John 15 tells us:
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit… As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned… By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples.
It took the revelation of knowing the life growing inside of me was actually repairing me from the inside out. How has pregnancy healed me? Well it’s funny because pregnancy has a way of healing our bodies if we have immune dysfunction and for some it is only temporary (while pregnant), but for others it calms and resets the immune system. In the last year and a half of my life I have felt God refining me on a painful level. I can feel Him stripping the once fruitful branches, only to show me they were impeding new and better growth.
When I was stripped, I felt like my world had been taken from me. It felt as though everything I thought God had placed in my life He had suddenly been taken away. And without a big abundant tree to hide behind, I had to get real about dealing with myself head on. I had to go deeper into spiritual truths of my Father. Learning more about His character not my own. It was in those months that I felt God’s tender love so sweetly.
Week after week I could feel him planting new branches. Fruitful branches. Branches that took more hard work than I had imagined sowing into. It meant facing ugly in the eye and learning how to biblically respond. Also late nights of tear soaked pillows wrestling with God to give me a break. My entire heart, my entire spirit, then the sweetest intimacy with God I had ever experienced.
Although I still didn’t understand His ways I knew them to be good. I can see they are good despite some of my fleshly realities still in so much turmoil. As I wrestled with a body that felt like it was failing me I still knew – He. Is. Good.
God Carries Us Through
The thing about going deeper with God is understanding His character without using our present circumstance to measure His goodness. His character never changes based on our diagnosis, or present tribulation. He is using it. He is using every ounce of it.
So on December 25th at twelve in the afternoon, two pink lines were confirmation and although it wasn’t the plan I still declare HE IS GOOD. I know this because I know my father. He is good, whether He is presenting me with a gift, or taking away. I seek Him in dark, deep seasons and He always carries me through. The day He blessed me with a life I didn’t plan, I praised Him for His uncomprehendable and perfect plan. A plan my mind could not dream up for myself.
On that Christmas morning, in messy pajamas, Christmas presents all across the floor, my branches…little more full. This time I knew they were un-doubtable fruitful and I thank God for this season of pruning. Every kick I feel this sweet baby make, my heart sings. Mind is learning in this season, that He is always always good.
My prayer for today:
Father I thank you for the seasons of immense pruning in our lives. God I pray that in those seasons we do not resist your working. Allow us to press in totally and completely to you and what it is you are teaching us. Give us strength to recognize what you are removing from our lives. Lord I pray for perseverance in the struggles. I pray that through our trials we only have a deeper desire to know you more intimately father. I pray for hearts that do not look to their situations to determine their goodness. Allow us to seek your word to learn the true and perfect attributes of your perfect character.
Father I pray that you comfort hearts that are in seasons of unknowing. Lord I pray for guidance as we walk out the plans you have for our lives. I ask that you never stop pruning us in order for us to most apply serve you. Lord let us not waste any opportunity to grow deeper with you. Father I ask that you give us hearts that sing you are good in every season of our life. It is in your name we pray. Amen.