In my last post, I talked about emotional pain and how Jesus not only experienced those same hurts, He is experiencing them now with you. So now lets talk about physical hurts.
Jesus knows about physical pains. Matthew 27:29-30, “When they had twisted a crown of thorns, they put it on His head…Then they spat on Him, and took the reed and struck Him on the head.” He was beaten and whipped. He was nailed to a cross. He died a horrible death. Jesus knows about pain.
Along with the hurts that Jesus himself experienced, Jesus was also surrounded by people with hurts. The sick, the injured, the weak, the blind, the deaf, the mute, the lame, the lepers. Matthew 15:30 says, “Then great multitudes came to Him having with them the lame, blind, mute, maimed, and many others; and they laid them down at Jesus’s feet, and He healed them.”
Jesus saw the hurts in the people around Him. And through their faith He made them whole. Jesus felt His own physical hurts, and then rose above them and conquered death to make us all whole for all eternity with God.
A fake brain what?
In 2000, I was diagnosed with an, let’s call it, interesting condition. Its scientific name is Pseudotumor Cerebri. Basically it’s a fake brain tumor. Yep, fake, nonexistent, not really there, you get the point. It is an incurable disease that comes on with little to no warning. So at any point my body could start reacting as if I have a brain tumor. Obviously this is not a common disease and those of you who know me in real life may not even know about it.
My first symptoms were extreme dizziness and trouble with my vision (which could best be described as sunspots all the time only in funny shapes. I had elephant shadows dancing in my vision most often.). I had CAT scans and MRIs and was treated for a number of things including ear infections before a doctor figured it out and sent me to a specialist.
Pseudotumor Cerebri makes your body believe you have a brain tumor, and then your body begins to fight against a tumor that isn’t there. Your optic nerves begin to swell (which cause the vision problems and can even lead to blindness) and it puts increased pressure on your brain (causing migraine like headaches and other pains).
I had a spinal tap to measure intracranial pressure (ICP). It is measured in millimeters and normal is 7-15. I don’t remember what mine was that first time, but it was very high. I had vision tests and learned that the blind spot in my vision is twice the size of a person with normal vision (although not big enough to affect my everyday vision.)
I was put on medication that made all food taste bad (great weight loss plan). I went through a time of deep depression where I was extremely lethargic (which I don’t actually remember but have heard stories from). And eventually the symptoms just went away. We called it remission because there isn’t a cure and the symptoms can come back at any time.
In 2004, shortly after we were married, my husband got to experience first hand the “fun” of Pseudotumor when my symptoms came back. I found a new eye doctor who then sent me to a Neurologist. I had another spinal tap. That time my ICP measured at 36 mm (again normal is 7-15). More pills and less depression later, I was in remission again.
Remission didn’t last as long that time. In 2006, around the same time as my second miscarriage, my Pseudotumor reared its ugly head again. Although I couldn’t get a doctor to say it, I knew in my heart the two were related. Weight gain and hormonal changes can bring the disease on, and when your body starts fighting a war, it fights everything.
Not only had I just been through another miscarriage, I was alone when the symptoms came back worse than they had ever been before. My husband was away on business and my parents and grandparents were in the Caribbean on a cruise. I could barely see because of the fog in my vision and the pain was unlike anything I had felt before. It wasn’t only a headache. This time the pain was in my neck, back and shoulders to the point where it hurt to move.
I laid on the couch and cried. I cried out to God. And finally I managed to get my phone with the hope that my mom would be somewhere that had cell service. Looking back, I’m not sure the exact order of everything that happened next. I do know that eventually I got ahold of my mom, and she then called my cousin who came over, took care of me and took me to the doctor.
Later my doctor said that he didn’t know how I was able to stand, let alone walk that time. With that much pressure on your brain, you shouldn’t be able to function.
Jesus is still healing the sick
Eventually my symptoms started to calm down again. There were so many people praying for me. There were churches that I didn’t attend praying for me. And I know that God hears and answers prayer.
It was my mom who said to me that maybe we were praying for the wrong thing. Maybe instead of me getting better, we should be praying for my healing.
That thought caught me off guard.
There were two parts to it. The first part is to only pray for things you believe can happen. If I didn’t believe that God would/could heal me, then there would be no reason to pray for it. Did I truly believe that God would heal me? Not just make me well but rid my body of this incurable disease.
The second part is knowing that sometimes God doesn’t answer prayer the way we want Him to. Sometimes He answers with a no. I know He has a plan that I can’t see and sometimes the answers don’t make sense at the time.
That may have been the day that I changed the way that I pray, the day that I started to be more exact and more aware of my words. We started to pray for healing over just being better.
I can’t tell you what God’s big plan for me is, and I can’t tell you the reason any of this happened. What I can tell you is that I haven’t had another episode since September 2006, and I absolutely believe that God healed me.
Today I have no problems with my vision. Today I rarely get headaches. Today I have 2 crazy little boys. Today I am healed.
I don’t know why some people are healed and some are not. I don’t know why some people struggle with pain and hurt every day and some do not. What I do know is that God has a plan bigger than you and me.
And someday all who believe that Jesus is the Christ will be hurt and pain free.