Well, my little December health challenge is over.
I wasn’t miraculously healed in December, but what I gained was worth it all! In fact, as I was thinking over the highlights of 2013, I realized that one of the biggest was this last month. I’m not sure if I can properly put into words what this month has meant to me, but I’d like to share a few things I’ve learned:
1) The end result hardly matters.
We live in a world where success is often measured by your end result, and I don’t think enough emphasis is put on the journey. Climbing the ladder may actually be the best part, instead of getting to the top….
Obviously, I would like to be sitting here, pain free, and telling you about how Jesus healed all physical difficulties for me in some kind of completely awesome, inspiring way. But that hasn’t happened yet, and I’m okay with that. I’m not even sure this December challenge was really about that – it felt like it was more about obedience.
As I’ve obeyed, and spent the month focusing on God and what He wants for my life, I can truly say that “…the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace.” When I focus on Him completely, nothing else matters. I have enjoyed this journey.
Teresa of Avila summed it up well:
“Ever since I stopped obsessing about my comfort and ease, my health has radically improved.”
I think this is what I tasted, and can completely understand why it would be true.
2) Fasting from anything allows for a fresh start.
And really, this was a month of fasting. Fasting from food loosens the hold it has over us, and that’s what I feel like right now. All of the appointments, and everything I’ve been doing to pursue health in my life has lost it’s strong grip on me, and I feel as though I have a more balanced perspective of everything. I’m going to start going to some appointments, but I’m not interested in going back to the way I was living life before.
This month, I was able to see what my life can be like when I’m not focusing on a pain-free life. I had pain, and that was expected, and strangely okay. I acknowledged it, accepted it, and then went and thought about something else. Very refreshing!
And now, I get to choose what I’ll do next. I’m not controlled by the need to make my life as perfect as possible, and I will be able to go into this New Year with a stronger ability to make good choices.
3) I’ve surprised myself.
I’m tougher than I thought I was.:)
God is awesome, and can absolutely heal all, but I’m pretty sure He also wants us to do our part.
This month, I did my part.
I did stretching, exercises, and yoga every day, twice a day on most days, and it’s made a huge difference. I had no appointments to rely on, so I worked like crazy. Way back at the beginning, when I was asking God for guidance on how to handle all of this, I felt as though He said to me, “Act like a healthy person.” And that is what I tried to do. It is what I’ll keep trying to do.
Maybe I’ll have some pain, and maybe not everything feels the way I wish it did, but I’m tired of labeling myself as unhealthy, and I’m tired of carrying this weight of suffering around with me everywhere. I’ll give the weight to Jesus, and live a little lighter.
4) I’m ready for whatever comes next.
If God still chooses to heal me at some point, as I feel He’s promised, that will be awesome.
If He doesn’t heal me in this lifetime, that will still be awesome. It makes me anticipate Heaven more, and that is not a bad thing.;)
And the next time God asks me to do something that seems strange, I think I’ll be a little more ready to say yes quickly!
When I have shared my end results with others, I think some people are a bit disappointed. But once again, Teresa of Avila says it best:
I have clearly seen that He has never failed to reward me, even in this lifetime, for any of my good intentions. No matter how feeble or flawed my deeds may have been, this Beloved of mine has taken them and perfected them, polishing and giving them worth.
I offered the month of December to Jesus, and He took what I had to offer. I had weak, dark moments, but He brought me through, and it amazes me that what seemed so hard and scary just a month ago, could turn into a time of blessing, even if the blessing did not includephysical healing at this time.
But about halfway through the month, I realized this wasn’t about jumping – it was about flying. It felt like soaring, to leave that cliff behind, and fly with Jesus.
Here’s to much more flying in the future.