Struggling with your faith because of illness?

To Strug­gle with one’s faith is not a triv­ial mat­ter.  No res­o­lu­tion in that strug­gle will come through mind over mat­ter.  It will come only from the Spir­it of God to the spir­it of man.

I have strug­gled with this Faith in God or doc­tor Issue many times in my life think­ing it was a con­flict in my Faith.  And it was.  Rec­on­cil­ing the need for doc­tors with my Faith has been a real chal­lenge.  At first I did not real­ize it would be resolved spir­i­tu­al­ly.   It was dur­ing those chal­leng­ing times that I was study­ing the bible when I found where James wrote If any of you lack wis­dom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men lib­er­al­ly, and upbraideth not; and it shall be giv­en him.”  Ref. James 1:5 KJV.   So, I began to ask God for wis­dom in this area, and just as promised He began pro­vid­ing me with answers.  Over time I came to real­ize that God can heal ill­ness while doc­tors treat the symp­toms.  And I began think­ing per­haps we should include the doc­tor in our prayer for heal­ing.

God has been help­ing me learn that I can “get the most from Him and from my care­tak­ers” when I keep my eyes on Him.  He has revealed to me sev­er­al major areas in my life that were affect­ing my health either pos­i­tive­ly or neg­a­tive­ly in dra­mat­ic ways.  He showed me that my life’s suc­cess­es, includ­ing my health are result­ing from my knowl­edge [or lack there­of], my choic­es, my faith, and my actions.  Work­ing togeth­er these areas can acti­vate “pow­er­ful God pro­vid­ed spir­i­tu­al forces” that will work for you and me when we apply them in line with God’s word.

Here I share what I have learned from my expe­ri­ences, and from God’s word, and from lead­ings of the Holy Spir­it.  And I have includ­ed two, of many, inci­dents con­cern­ing my health where God answered prayers.

Knowl­edge:  Is pri­ma­ry in get­ting the most from our care­tak­ers and from God.

Peo­ple are quick to admit knowl­edge is pow­er, but few are using it to their best advan­tage.  When used prop­er­ly knowl­edge will enhance your rela­tion­ship with the Lord, and yes, even help you to improve your health and your life.  Know­ing what hap­pens to faith when our words are con­tra­dict­ing our prayers will put us on the road to improv­ing our health.  It can be dif­fi­cult to line up our faith in our doc­tor with faith in God.  Lack of knowl­edge of the word could be the rea­son for unan­swered prayers.  Besides the spir­i­tu­al pow­er of increas­ing our faith, knowl­edge also helps us to under­stand the rela­tion­ship of our faith in God to our belief in our doc­tor and the health­care sys­tem.  Suf­fi­cient knowl­edge of your health care sys­tem, gov­ern­ment con­trols, insur­ance require­ments, and your doc­tor and care­tak­ers, can improve your health care results.  For exam­ple:  Do you know the Gov­ern­ment, the insur­ance indus­try, and the phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal indus­try influ­ences your doctor’s deci­sion con­cern­ing your health?  And, of course, there is the polit­i­cal and prof­it dri­ven motives dri­ving these influ­ences.

We DO NOT have to choose doc­tors over God.  Though the Bible says by His stripes we were healed, I found noth­ing in God’s’ word that says “how” we are healed, oth­er than by our “Faith in God.”  Why not receive God’s heal­ing thru our health care?  Why not?  You can have faith in God and believe in your health­care providers both at the same time.  I have not found any place in the bible where Jesus crit­i­cized a per­son for hav­ing used a physi­cian.  In fact I found where he had healed “..a cer­tain woman” with a blood issue who had spent all that she had, and was noth­ing bet­tered, but rather grew worse.”  Ref: Mark 5:25–34.  Jesus said to her “…Daugh­ter, thy faith hath made thee whole; go in peace, and be whole of thy plague”.  The doc­tors had not helped, but through her faith in Jesus she was healed.

Knowl­edge of God’s word [hold­ing unswerv­ing­ly doubt­ing not] and right­ly act­ing on it, will release the Spir­i­tu­al Pow­er of God on your behalf.  Ref. Hebrews 10:23 & 2 Peter 1:2–3.

When one prays for heal­ing today, then tomor­row tells his best friend,” It didn’t work, I am still sick.”  That is not hold­ing on, it is swerv­ing in doubt and will void your faith.  Our con­fes­sions must line up with our prayers.  Remem­ber, don’t deny it exists, but don’t declare it is not work­ing.  One could say some­thing like this.  “I still feel bad, but thank God, I am get­ting bet­ter.”  This will not claim own­er­ship of the sick­ness.  Ask once, in faith believ­ing.  There­after give thanks until you receive.  The words we speak about our health are seeds we plant and will grow to har­vest time.

Choic­es:  Can be good or bad.

It has been said choic­es have con­se­quencesThere was a time in my life when I did not know what I believed which affect­ed my choic­es.   So in doubt, I chose through pro­cras­ti­na­tion, to be unde­cid­ed, and so I would pro­cras­ti­nate [a bad choice].  God showed me my faith was in man, and myself [bad choice].  I came to real­ize my faith was mis­placed; then there came a day when I made a good choice and began to talk to God.  And just as he promised; one who seeks will find.   Now, when I speak to God I know he hears me. Ref:  1 John 5:14 .  Now I pray and then “then tune in” and “lis­ten” for his words and sure enough, He speaks to me.  For some time now I have been ask­ing God to help me make the right choic­es and He does.  I learned I DO NOT have to choose doc­tors over God.

Faith:  Encom­pass­es our entire life.

Faith in God may well be “the decid­ing fac­tor in your health!”  Do you believe in prayer?  You should because prayer is absolute­ly nec­es­sary.  Pray for heal­ing, pray for the doc­tor and your care­tak­ers, and pray that your faith and actions will line up with God’s Word.  Be proac­tive in your health­care and lis­ten to your doc­tor.  Pray for your doc­tor to prop­er­ly treat the symp­toms while you pray and trust God to heal the cause.  James 5:16.  You can believe in God for your heal­ing, even while see­ing a doc­tor.

Faith with­out Works is dead.   Our works [actions] must be in line with God’s word.  I have learned God can work for me through my care­tak­ers; there­fore I must hear­ken to my caretaker’s advice as well as God’s Word, and God’s advice from the Holy Spir­it.  We can get guid­ance from the Holy Spir­it on things like chang­ing our lifestyle [like what we eat and how to be phys­i­cal­ly active] to help in our health care.  We must strive to have faith by our works [our actions and our words].   Our actions along with our words must be in line our Faith and with the Word of God.  Proverbs 18:21.   Could it be that the doc­tor treats our symp­toms while God heals our ill­ness?

The Test­ing of our Faith works Patience.  I was slow to get this.  There have been times past when I thought the answer to my prayers would be likened to a bolt of light­ning.   This spir­i­tu­al law of patience involves our faith “not doubt­ing and God’s per­fect tim­ing.”  James said in his let­ter to the twelve tribes But let patience have her per­fect work, that ye may be per­fect and entire, want­i­ng noth­ing.”  Ref:  James 1:4.   I have learned that patience is real­ly a part of our “faith filled works while we are wait­ing on the Lord.”

Actions [our works]: Will bring it all togeth­er to get results.  

Faith with­out prop­er works is dead.  For as the body with­out the spir­it is dead, so faith with­out works is dead also. James 2:26Our con­fes­sions [words] are also our works.  Our actions [things we do], and con­fes­sions [what we speak], must be in line with our faith which also must be accord­ing to God’s word.  I must strive to have faith by my works [my actions and my words].  God can work for us through our care­tak­ers when we right­ly include them in our prayers.  God will not act for us, but we can get guid­ance from the Holy Spir­it on our actions on things such as chang­ing our lifestyle [like what we eat and how to be phys­i­cal­ly active] to help in our health care.  Ref. Proverbs 18:21.

God lead me to bet­ter health.

There was the time I was told by my doc­tor that my blood tests indi­cat­ed high glu­cose lev­els in dia­bet­ic range.  I was diag­nosed “dia­bet­ic” with AIC read­ings well above any­thing desir­able.  My doc­tor instruct­ed me on med­ica­tions to take and that I should watch my diet to con­trol sug­ar intake.  When I recov­ered from the shock of the diag­no­sis I began to ask God for help.   We prayed, then lis­tened, then act­ed on guid­ance received from the Holy Spir­it.   My wife gets lead­ings in what to cook, and me on what, and how much to eat.  We became proac­tive with man­ag­ing our health and there­fore our food intake.  We have learned to “eat to live” rather than “live to eat.”  In short we changed our life style.  Fol­low­ing God’s guid­ance and becom­ing proac­tive result­ed in answered prayer.  I was told by my doc­tor that my blood tests are now show­ing me to be “PRE-DIABETIC.”

Then there was the time my heart doc­tor pre­scribed cho­les­terol med­ica­tion.  Pray­ing about this I received guid­ance con­cern­ing my bor­der line and poten­tial high cho­les­terol.  I was lead to improve my eat­ing habits and to NOT take the rec­om­mend­ed cho­les­terol med­ica­tion.  Over a short peri­od of time after act­ing on God’s lead­ing, my cho­les­terol showed in my blood test to be NORMAL.   This was anoth­er answer to prayer.

Be proac­tive by tak­ing action on what you learn from God’s word in man­ag­ing your life and your health­care.  You have choic­es.  Doc­tors and care­tak­ers, are not your mom and pop; they are not “in charge” of your life.   Assert your faith in this area by ask­ing God for wis­dom con­cern­ing your treat­ments for your health.  A good time to say silent prayers is while wait­ing to see your doc­tor.  Include a prayer for your doc­tor and your care­tak­ers.  Ask God to give you wis­dom in how to get best results from your care­tak­ers.  Then, lis­ten for God’s lead­ing.  Then be proac­tive.

Our bod­ies are com­plex cre­ations of God.  Our health is not just of the body, but involves soul and spir­it as well.  There­fore we need God involved to help us.  Ref:  John 6:63. It is the spir­it that quick­eneth; the flesh prof­iteth noth­ing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spir­it, and they are life.

God wish­es for all of us in 3 John 1:2 “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest pros­per and be in health, even as thy soul pros­pereth.

Join me here next time for more of God’s Design for Man.

 

Jim Com­ley

 

 

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