No, I have not given up. I have not resigned. I have not surrendered to whatever reminders my body gives me that I am not a hare, running at an energy-bunny pace. (I haven’t quite embraced being the tortoise yet as I’d prefer something I tad faster, but hey, I’m a work in progress…)
But I have accepted my frame and what I can and cannot do with it. I have accepted that there are some crazy feats I would be better off not trying just to prove a point. I pay attention and make responsible efforts to be well, but my entire life does not revolve around it as a mental and emotional focal point.
There are various interpretations of acceptance in relation to illness and even some negative connotations to it. Figuring it out can be confusing because society tends to imply that accepting pain is a sign of weakness. As someone with a tendency to be driven, the word irritated me and made feel something akin to defeat and exhaustion. Eventually I had to find a truer definition, because denial was not working very well anymore. Please readers, help me out here – what do you think of acceptance?
I do not accept illness in and of itself as a final answer, but I must face my current practical reality properly to make the most of it and still be as productive and healthy as possible. The fact that I have limitations that occasionally demand my attention doesn’t change my expectation of healing or the fact that I will be healed, but as for when? I’m not in full control there. God is. This fact is what keeps it in perspective when nothing makes any sense.
What makes it awkward is when people put so much pressure on the “getting healed” part that it feels like you’ve failed if it doesn’t work out according to their expectations. Of course God’s will is healing, but sometimes I get the feeling that some people are uncomfortable or even offended when it’s been a long time, loads of effort and money spent and it still doesn’t happen. Then there simply must be something wrong with the you. There seems to be this idea that if you can’t pray suffering away then you haven’t done enough, learned your lesson or you are lacking in faith. Sometimes, we cause or add to our own suffering by being irresponsible, impatient, unforgiving, resentful or just not letting things go, but when that is dealt with, what else can you point at?
The only solution is to accept that there are times where God accomplishes great things through difficulties, and Christ Himself didn’t get to be resurrected until after He went through suffering. Paul wrote his best work in prison, on top of everything else he went through. There are endless scriptures on the subject of having to go through suffering and finding Christ in it, just as much as there are ones on healing. These treasures that come out of prolonged struggles and suffering are usually what eventually inspires and empowers everyone. Hal Elrod went through a lot before he became successful with his book on Miracle Mornings. He is in the middle of another difficult time and his previous experiences now help carry him through it.
The real question then is not whether it is God’s will to heal. Of course it is and healing will come, whether here on earth or when we meet Him in heaven. The real question is: What can God do with this situation? Whatever the factors, mistakes or causes involved, He can be glorified.
This is my acceptance: I am not going to waste my life and time focusing on whether and when I will be healed. I am not going to get stuck in the twilight waiting zone. I am going to accept that He has a plan, whether I understand it or not. I am going to accept a truth that is higher than my factual experiences and LIVE, even if I may do it a little slower than others. I am going to stop comparing and celebrate my own pace and rhythm, even if I don’t have it all figured out yet.