Jesus is hurting with you Part 2

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 itĀ 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 themĀ 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.

Jesus is hurting with you

Last week I was sitting on my porch watching 2 crazy little boys race their big wheels up and down the drive. I was wanting to write, but I didn’t have a topic so I pulled out my Bible. Before I started to read, I prayed that God would lead me to the right words and that I would write what He wanted me to.

I started at the beginning of Matthew and read through the Sermon on the Mount. Then the wind picked up and began flipping the pages of my Bible backwards towards what I had already read. I know that God works in ways I can’t begin to understand, and I know that He controls the wind, so I just let the pages move.

The pages flipped slowly. At any time I could have stopped them, but I let them go. Finally, they stopped flipping, and my Bible was open to the introduction to Matthew. The Bible I use the most is a study Bible written in New King James Version. Across from the introduction is a study page all about hurting.

And just like that I knew what I was supposed to share with you.

There are so many different kinds of hurts. There are emotional hurts. The pain of loss, depression, disappointment, heartbreak. During times of emotional hurt it can be hard to see God. You can feel so alone. And then there are physical hurts, the brokenness of the body, the pains that may seem to be never-ending (or may even actually be never-ending.) It’s a place where it can feel like God has abandoned you to your physical pains.
 

Emotional hurts

 

When we first started talking about having kids, it was an exciting time. I had always wanted to be a mom. It was the only real career goal I ever had. And in no time at all, I was pregnant. I’m not sure I can accurately describe the complete joy I felt. Or the absolute devastation I felt a couple of weeks later when I miscarried. And how it was even higher joy and lower devastation a few months later when it happened again.

Those were some dark times in my life. Even though I was surrounded by friends and family who loved me, I felt alone. Even though they were hurting too, I felt alone in my pain. There are several months that I have almost no memory from.

But the reality is that I was never alone in my hurts. Besides the friends and family that were hurting, Jesus was hurting with me.

 

Jesus hurts with you

 

He knows what it’s like to lose someone you love. He knows the hurt of betrayal. He knows the hurt of abandonment. He knows the hurt of being falsely accused of something. Whatever your hurt, you can know that Jesus has been there.

One of the shortest verses in the Bible has been on my heart a lot the last couple of weeks. John 11:35 “Jesus wept.” If you start at the beginning of John 11, it tells the story of the death of Lazarus. He was a friend of Jesus, and even though Jesus could (and did) bring Lazarus back to life, He still wept over the death of His friend.

John 11:14-15, “Then Jesus said to them plainly, ‘Lazarus is dead. And I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, that you may believe.'” Jesus didn’t have to experience the pain of loss, but He did so that not only the disciples but all of us would believe, so we would know that we are not alone. You weep as Jesus wept. Your pain is Jesus’s pain. Your sorrow is His sorrow.

 

Hope

 

Hope is an amazing thing. Hope lessens the hurt.  And not only do we have the hope that tomorrow will be better, that the pain will hurt less, we have the hope of eternity with Jesus in Heaven. In John 14:2, Jesus tells that He is going to prepare a place for us in His Father’s house.

Revelation 21:4 tells us what Heaven will be like, saying, “And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”

Someday there will be no pain.

I don’t know what your pain is, and I don’t need to know. What I do know is that you are not alone in your pain. Jesus felt the same pain all those years ago, and He feels them today with you.

Some hurts you never get over. The hurt may lessen, but some hurts last a lifetime. But know, if you believe and accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, whatever your hurt is today, it is only temporary.

Jesus conquered the grave so we may have eternity with Him where there is no pain, no hurt, no tears and no suffering.

Someday there will be only joy.

True joy.