God healed my neck
My journey started in May with an achy feeling in the back of my neck. The feeling would come and go, so I wrote it off as fatigue. As the weeks progressed the achy stiff feeling continued to come and go and I started having dull headaches. I changed pillows a dozen times but nothing helped. In June I started having the same feeling when I turned my head in certain directions. By July, I had pain and stiffness everyday every time I turned my head. I knew something was wrong, but thought that with enough rest it would get better. August came, and so did a whole new set of symptoms. It started with a dull headache. I felt a cold rush up my spine and the pressure exploded in my head. I was dizzy and foggy. My eyes went blurry and there was so much pressure in my head that my ears popped. Every muscle in my neck locked stiff with spasms. The headache was 10 on the pain scale. Nothing my doctors gave me made any difference. I had X-rays and a cat scan that showed nothing. I suffered the agonizing pain for 7 days. My muscles were so exhausted that they couldn't hold my head up. When my muscles did move the pain was excruciating. For the next few weeks I rested and waited to see a specialist.
In September a specialist told me that I had a bad neck sprain and needed PT. I had done six weeks of PT which didn't help, when it all happened again in October. My neck muscles locked up and the horrible headache and other symptoms came back. It lasted three days this time before leaving me with a neck made of cooked spaghetti and glass shards. I decided this time I would make sure I was doing everything I could to fix myself. I worked to make sure my posture was correct at all times. I heated and cooled my neck muscles to increase blood flow. I used tennis balls and golf balls to massage my trigger points. Still the pain persisted. I cried almost daily out of frustration and fear that I would feel like this forever. I was really struggling with why this was all happening to me.
In early December I started feeling like I was making some progress. I had regained most of my range of motion but still had pain. Three days before Christmas it all happened again. It was three days of agony over Christmas. It was all I could do to not cry while everyone opened presents. After this episode I felt totally defeated physically and emotionally. I just didn't have the strength to fight anymore. I realized I was finally in the right frame of mind to listen to what God was trying to tell me. (Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.)
For months I had been relying on myself and on modern medicine to do what only God can do...heal me. Don't get me wrong, I greatly value modern medicine, but it only assists in healing. Only God can truly heal. I decided that I needed to focus on helping God, not fixing myself. I started by eating better and drinking plenty of water. I started making sure that I was getting all the nutrients and minerals that my body needs everyday and nothing that would damage it. I continued doing the strengthening exercises that I learned in PT. The most important change I made though, was in my relationship with God.
(Proverbs 4:20-23 My child, pay attention to what I say. Listen carefully to my words. Don’t lose sight of them. Let them penetrate deep into your heart, for they bring life to those who find them, and healing to their whole body. Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life.) I began to pray each day before I got out of bed. I prayed often throughout my day. I had daily devotions. I listened to music that helped me keep my focus on Him. The hardest thing by far was to submit my will to Him. As humans we all want our answer to prayer right now. I was no different. I had to make a decision in my heart that I would continue to love and honor Him whether or not He answered my prayer. That was really tough for me! The thought of being in constant pain for the rest of my life was almost unbearable. I had to trust above all that God has a purpose in everything including my pain. I don't believe for a minute that God gave me my pain.
We live in a sinful world, and I like all sinners, am open to Satan's attacks. Trials are part of the fair choice that God gave His life to provide all of us. (Romans 8:32 He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?) I know that God hated to see me in agonizing pain, but He knew that I was strong enough to withstand it. I resolved to keep my faith strong no matter what. It gave me such a tremendous sense of peace as I gave the heavy burden of worry and frustration over my situation to The Lord.
I began to enjoy my days again even with the pain. It's amazing how much God changes you from the inside out. I started kneeling and praying with my children each day. I tried everyday to adopt the attitude of Christ. I was still far from perfect and failed often, but I kept trying.
I finally decided one week to go back to church. My family all went with me. At the end of the service the pastor asked me if I would like for he and the elders to lay hands on me and pray. (James 5:14-15 Are any of you sick? You should call for the elders of the church to come and pray over you, anointing you with oil in the name of the Lord. Such a prayer offered in faith will heal the sick, and the Lord will make you well.) I was so touched...literally. I'm not the type of person who is comfortable asking for help. God impressed upon them my need for help. It was a life changing blessing! They all prayed over me and anointed my head. They told me that God had given me healing but that I needed to expect that Satan would still test my faith. They encouraged me to stay strong and allow Gods healing to prevail.
I wish I could say that I got up out of the chair and never felt pain again, but that wouldn't be true. I knew that Satan didn't flee that easily. God has a special purpose for my life and I knew Satan would want to prevent me from having this testimony to share. I slowly started feeling better throughout the day. By that evening I had very minimal pain and could feel my strength returning. I knew that it was only a matter of time before Satan realized he wasn't going to beat me and gave up. My pain continued to fade more and more each day until I realized I had gone a full day without pain. I have been pain free ever since. (1 Peter 5:10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.)
I'm grateful to God for the trial that I went through because it drew me closer to Him in a way that nothing else could have. (2 Corinthians 12:9-10 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and trouble that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.) I was reminded how easy it is to be distracted by the cares of this world. My faith and confidence in Gods amazing power and love has gone to a whole other level. My family who witnessed this miracle was also blessed. Someday I hope that my children will remember all of this when they face trials in their own lives. My ultimate hope that by sharing my story, your faith will be strengthened and God will provide you a miracle of your own to share. (Isaiah 41:10-13 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. For I hold you by your right hand-I, the LORD your GOD. And I say to you, Don’t be afraid. I am here to help you.)