I’ve been struggling with something and I finally sorted my head out about it.
The first week of March, I was sick. Twice. On that Sunday, I awoke feeling tired and lethargic and decided that I’d spend the day catching up on my sleep. I had something to eat and went back to bed. Within an hour, I had a fever and all I wanted to do was sleep some more, so I did…for the entire day. That was how long the fever lasted. I would sleep, wake, change out of my sweated-out clothes into something dry then go back to sleep. Every time I woke up that day, I hydrated and prayed that God would heal me of whatever was happening. As evening fell and there was no improvement, I took 2 Panadol Multi Symptom and went back to sleep. I slept right through the night and awoke the next morning feeling fine, though a little muzzy (those Panadol are no joke). I also had a cough and my voice was hoarse.
That Wednesday morning, I had my first bike riding lesson. I fell off the bike within the first 2 minutes of operating it on my own. Scraped half the skin off my left forearm near my elbow, dug a small hole in my left hand near my wrist, got a few other assorted scrapes and cuts on my left knee and foot, and hurt up my mountain toe (we’ll get to that in a minute). I got up from my fall, assured my 2 instructors and 2 random guys who were riding past at the time (so nice of them to stop and check) that I was OK (no wimps around here), and continued with my lesson for another hour. When it was done, we made 3 stops then went back to the centre. So the germs from my road rash had a good hour and a half to get right up into my system. As soon as I hit the centre, I cleaned my wounds, put anti-biotic ointment on them all, bandaged some of them and went back to work.
By 1 pm, I was burning up with fever. It was worse than the fever I’d had that Sunday. Again, I prayed for God to break it and by the second hour with no improvement I was pressing a wet rag to my forehead and neck to try and cool myself down, popping Tylenol and sweating like nobody’s business. It lasted all night and I woke in the morning with aching wounds but no fever.
Meanwhile, at the time of this writing, the after-effects of my mountain climb back in January are still with me. While my right toe no longer hurts and the nail is giving small signs of getting back to its normal colour, my left toe is being stubborn. The end of that toe still feels a little numb but it doesn’t really hurt, except for the outer top corner of the nail. If I press on it, it has that ingrown toenail achy feeling, you know what I mean? I was putting antibiotic ointment on it for about 2 weeks and I think that helped manage the ache when it was at its worst. I also soaked it in sea salt water a few times (my mom suggested Epsom salts but sea salt was the closest I could get). It still looks decidedly black and blue and its pinkness is coming back much more slowly than the right one.
That left toe is what I’m calling my mountain toe. I’ve prayed numerous prayers over it. I’ve asked Jesus to heal it and I’ve asked Him to show me if there is something I should be doing about it that I’m not.
Yes, I pray for healing over my body. I believe in Jesus and I believe in His healing power and I pray for healing over my body when some part of it isn’t well. I’ve been doing this for a over a year now and God has always answered me. I didn’t have to take medication or find alternative solutions when I prayed for healing, God just answered my prayer. The thing is, before now, He answered me quickly. Hence my struggle over this fever and mountain toe business.
There was no immediacy of answer this time and I had to find medicinal solutions. I just have not been able to understand why Jesus would literally heal overnight the other minor things that I’ve prayed over during the past year but let my mountain toe linger and let me go all the way through the fevers. I wondered about it for a week. I asked God about it but I didn’t feel like I got an answer. My faith in Him was unshaken but I was so confused about His seeming lack of action.
Then at the end of 1 week of wondering, as I walked to our neighbourhood corner shop to buy an ice cream bar (cause it was so darn hot!), I finally got my answer; it floated right into my spirit. How presumptuous I was being expecting God to act like a magician, to wave His magic Bible over my body and make me healthy just because I said so! My mountain toe may seem like it isn’t healing up but it is – although it isn’t back to normal, it looks and feels immeasurably better than it did when I just got here. And my fever wasn’t miraculously healed but simple over-the-counter medication set me right in less than 24 hours.
I had forgotten. I had forgotten that God works in His timing and according to His purpose – my timing and wants are irrelevant. I had also forgotten that sometimes He works without requiring any effort from me and sometimes He requires me to do something.
As I walked up the road, the burden of confusion that I had been carrying lifted from my heart and I apologised to God for my presumption. An hour later, just before the wifi went out (again!), I got a Whatsapp message from a friend. It simply said:
Psalm 62:1-2: Truly my soul silently waits for God; from Him comes my salvation He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be greatly moved.
It felt like God was supplementing the message He had floated into my spirit just an hour before. I felt like He was saying to me, “My darling daughter, I don’t work according to what you want and when you want it. But stand firm in your faith and trust me to come through for you. Every time.”
And I was so thankful to God for reminding me who’s in charge here, and for healing me…in His timing.