The Weston A. Price Way

Thursday, July 12, 2018

To Keep It, Release It

No, it's not about fishing.

In keeping with my promise that this will no longer be a place only about bodily nourishment (because nourishment of mind, body and spirit all matter immensely), I offer today's post and it may be the most important post I've written yet because after everything, so much of everything, I know that I know that I know...

The Number One, most important thing in this life is to give this life over to NOT JUST 'a higher power', but the only High Power. There is no other god like him because, quite frankly, there is no other God, period. And just in case there is any confusion, as there so often is today, I speak of the one and only Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I speak of Jesus Christ. I speak of God.

But in our lives, we can and do make a god out of anything. To some, it's gold, in whatever form it takes. To others, it's the agenda for today or a multitude of other things we've decided are first. And in that very decision is the decision that there is no other God except the one doing the deciding.

If you know me or have followed me via FB, you know my story. You know that part of my story includes very nearly dying twice in a single year. It's been just 2 years since the enemy's first attempt against my life took place. It's been about a year and a half since the second, which came in the form of a simple bicycling accident gone awry at light-speed.

Today, I write about that second incident, or more accurately, the days that God held me thereafter. I do this because my Creator made me able and willing to write and hopefully, you will glean goodness from my experience. 

Are you wondering why it's taken so long? Well, it takes time to sort through what's worth keeping and what needs abandonment after a bomb is dropped. Or a hurricane hits. Or a flood washes through. I'm sure you get the idea. The truth is, I'm still sorting, but things are at least tidy enough now that I think it what's written below could be of help to you in your season of struggle. 


Sometimes, my most serious prayer is the one where I'm asking God to keep a friend from going crazy, no joke. ...To give them that peace that he promises is so great and good that we just cannot understand it. I ask that often. I see the stuff people go through sometimes and wonder how they can possibly stay sane outside of the abiding (not going away) love and presence of Jesus Christ.
When I was hospitalized and in non-stop pain a few years ago, I had a lot of support. I had the staff, my church family, my extended family and immediate family and the many good friends God has blessed us with via the 'military life'. They cared for me in a multitude of ways and they were excellent in that care.
But they couldn't guard my heart and mind... (and how ironic that the two physical ways I came under attack was my heart first, and brain, later.)

Lying in the street, I could see the blood, mine, pooling at my side. I could feel it's warmth in my hand as I reached to comfort the pain in my head. I remember feeling panic...a lot. Especially when the pain spiked. "What does this mean? Has something gone wrong? How much more pain will I feel before I die? Am I going to die? I haven't said good-bye to anyone!" In and out of consciousness, I knew my retired Coast Guard and current CPR Instructor husband was close by. I could hear his voice as he saw to it that everything was in order regarding medical help coming quickly. Even though I'd experienced a major life-threatening event just a few months earlier, this one was scarier. For me, it was the scariest ever. Although the two events turned out to be equally life-threatening, this one caused me to sense death.  

Craniotomy performed to stave off impending death, I was unable to speak ...and w/the drugs I was given, probably much would have sounded like gibberish anyway. As the days progressed and the pain remained, I'm told I was very vocal. To keep me calm and quiet, drugs were pumped. I thank God for my daughter in the medical profession who leans towards a naturalist heart. She saw me in a condition I was unaware of and questioned the meds and their dosage. She went head-to-head with medical staff in a sort of fury (I'm told) and because she's smart and possibly in part because she inherited from me the ability to make people think they might die if they don't listen, she won. 

And maybe she is as much to thank for saving my life as the neurosurgeon. She is at the very least a big part in my coming back to the world with my reasoning intact.

And that's the first good ending. But let me talk a little about the Limbo. This was a place of aloneness. My world had suddenly become a place where no healthy human-being could enter. Yet God made his presence known to me there. Somewhere between the light and darkness, between the awake and non-awake, He was there. ...Oh, how true that we can go nowhere that is away from Him! (Psalm 139:7-12).

I could only do so much to guard my thoughts at the time, but his Holy Spirit, who sealed me to Himself so many years ago...He came in and let me know He was THERE. I wasn't always aware. I didn't see Him or hear Him, but the moments I felt Him were enough. Please understand, I wasn't 'Super-Cindy-Soldier'. Helpless and Vulnerable had become my new identity. It was such a difficult place to describe. I'd become like an isolated bag of bones where time was forever and nothing all at once, where life was over and yet beginning. ...Where nothing seemed to be as it should be and yet somehow, all was well. Surrounded by caretakers I was yet alone in that place, except for His Presence. And He did exactly what He promises. He comforted me.

Eventually, I was able to communicate about needing ‘my music’ and consequently, there were songs played constantly at my ear...songs that encouraged me to let go and trust God to move the mountains.
While everyone else was so (necessarily) busy seeing to the maintenance of my broken body, God was busy even more so, surrounding me with His grace, his protection and with infusing me with a will to fight. But not in the way we think of as fighting.

I am a fighter. I've been described by others as 'feisty'. I'm not proud to admit that much of my life could be defined by this statement: "She Fought." Ha! But this time, the fight I faced was to trust someone...Someone...else to fight for me. My fight was to believe on a level I'd never before needed to believe. My fight was to NOT panic. My fight was to surrender without kicking and squirming. My fight was to hold on to hope. ...To believe if my body didn't stay, those I love fiercely would know so. To believe that His love for them is greater than mine. To believe that the little picture I see isn't the picture. In my life, I'd only once been so far out of reach of my own abilities and in that case, it was over so quickly that imagined control was back in my hands again. But not this time. 

Even as God held my hand and the miracles unfolded, one by one, my inner struggle with trust remained. Entering back into the Land of the Living, I found the 'I survived!' honeymoon short-lived. There was so much I was at first incapable of doing. I couldn't eat or pee on my own, talk discernibly or walk. Even though all the professionals kept saying my recovery was on a super-fast track, I had a lot to learn about patience. A lot. I'm still learning, in fact. 

To put a cherry on top, there was more pain to be faced. Pain really sucks. My compassion for grouchy people in pain has skyrocketed. Before this event, I'd had no earthly idea the average, everyday person like myself might have to endure such pain in average everyday life.  Sure, I’d read books, articles, other peoples’ stories. I thought this stuff only happened to those overly endowed with courage, certainly not to me. Not to me!  But the pain, in one form o another, just kept coming and coming.  And I did ask beg God to make it stop. And yes, today, I still deal with some of that pain and it would be a lie to say I don't get tired of it. Truth be fully known, there is sometimes a voice that tells me to "Just. Give. Up." Give up on what? On believing and trusting God. And I know in my depths that to do that would lead to giving up on loving Him, too. 

And I can't do that. 

I'm not wired to give up, not anymore. In my young adulthood, coming to a realization of the depth of His love towards me, I gave Him place in my my very spirit. Spirit is deeper than mind, will or emotion, you see. And it's from that place that He says to me, "No giving up!" But He doesn't leave me there empty-handed. He's handed me key upon key to unlock doors to His peace. They are found in the Bible and when I am too weak to incorporate the answers found there, He sets my feet on a path to those He uses to nudge me back to Him. 

God has carried me, kept me sane, given me the courage and strength I was so desperately without, helped me sort through the cluttered, 'bomb-debris' left in the wake of the bicycle accident. I don't want to be defined by that accident. I want to be defined by God's grace to me before and after the accident. He granted unreasonable peace in an unlikely place and He's still at it. In His way, God carries us through things we never, ever imagined would touch our lives and He does it with fine attunement to our personal wiring. Maybe today, maybe tomorrow this will be you. And I truly hope the reader doesn't take this as a prophesy of doom. It is, rather, a promise of hope that whatever awaits, it can be positive when God is factored into the equation.

I believe all prayer to God is heard prayer. We don't always know the words, we may even be too far into unconsciousness to comprehend our own thoughts, but that same Spirit that seals us, prays for us when we are unable to form the words or even the thoughts that form the words. Trust this: Prayer to the King of Kings is heard prayer. Every other prayer pales.  

Someone recently asked me how I deal with ongoing pain and unanswered prayer. This person assumed my prayer was unanswered because healing hasn't yet manifested itself. Nonetheless, we can't claim there is no answer when the answer just hasn't come in the way or at the speed we wanted. I believe sometimes we have to open our eyes to the answer coming in another form. Perhaps slowly when we desired quickly. Sometimes, there's a multitude to be learned in that space of 'unanswered prayer'. Other times, God is positioning people and mindsets and circumstances into better places where the answer will benefit more people or shed more light on His omniscience.

To keep God's peace, we have to release our own ideas of what will bring that peace. It's incredulous how we think we know! But do we know better than our Creator? We do not. God’s Word is full of incident after incident where the answer to prayer did not include an immediate end to pain, in whatever form it presented itself. Still, from start to finish, we do always have a beautiful answer in the form of a free offering straight from God’s hand. That answer is peace. Not as this world gives. Not even in miracles or medicines or healing. This peace is the one that only comes from the Spirit of God. And it truly does go beyond our understanding.

In the end, it comes to this: His peace outweighs everything.

Philippians 4:6 & 7:
"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."



...He's a Good, Good Father!