Finding My Way
By Barbara Bennett on December 15, 2012
When I was first diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis (IC), I was a physical and emotional wreck. Prior to my diagnosis, I was working out at the gym 3-4 times a week. I was lifting weights and using the elliptical machine like clockwork. My physical body was finally getting back into the best shape it had been in a long time. I felt my spiritual life was just fine too...ah, how we can fool ourselves. I was a member of the church I grew up in, I was on the nominating committee, the personnel committee and I was teaching Sunday School. I prayed and read my Bible everyday. How much closer to God could I be? Oh, I was to soon to find out!
When my physical body was in such disarray, I began doubting God. Why me God? Why do I have to be cursed by this terrible disease, I'm the one trying to do everything right? Why do I have to be in so much pain? Why am I barley able to function as a person? Why do I have to take these drugs that put me in a fog? Why do I have to be the one that has trouble walking from the car to my office? Why am I the one who can't enjoy the simple things of life such as going out to eat with my husband, spending time with my family, enjoying my friends? Why am I the one that is not going to have a "normal life". Why, why,why? I would cry myself to sleep every night, asking God why??!!?? I kept praying "God, I can't do this on my own, I need you to help me." I prayed it because it was what I had heard all my life, it was what I needed to pray, but I didn't feel it in my heart!!!
Finally, I went to talk to my pastor. He said, maybe this is a time for you to "Be still and know that I am God" Psalm 46:10. A time to slow down from the day in day out of life. He told me to read the book of John, like I had never read it before. I did, and things finally became so clear. Then, I prayed the same prayer and felt it in my heart and had such peace!!!
I am going through this for a reason. We all have our struggles and we are going through them for a reason, it is up to us to find out why. We can feel sorry for ourselves all the time and do nothing or we can figure out what our purpose is in life is. I figured out that when you are very sick, you find out who really loves you and who your true friends are in life. I figured out that the most simple things in life are taken for granted and they shouldn't be, they should be cherished.
I found out that I could no longer clean my house, which I enjoyed so much, I always kept a meticulous house. However, I spend more time with my Mom now, because she comes once a week to help me around the house. I found that I don't always feel like going out to eat with my husband every Friday night, something that I always looked forward to. However, now he will go pick up our supper and take care of me no matter how bad I feel. I found out that I could no longer teach my Sunday School class that I loved so dearly. However, I can encourage others who are going through some of the sames struggles I am going through.
A very dear friend of mine said one of her friends was having chronic pain, but that she didn't know what to say to her because she couldn't relate. I said, I can relate to that now. I can relate to the person who feels all alone and scared, not knowing what is going to happen. I can relate to the person who is not sure they will be able to continue working because of all their pain. I can relate to the person who was just diagnosed with a non-curable disease. Don't get my wrong, I still cry myself to sleep some nights, but now at least I know a purpose for all my suffering. I can relate, I can comfort and I can encourage...I have found my way!
"We do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need." Hebrews 4:15-16