I’m currently in a state of stillness — praying, reading, and meditating daily as I await to hear a specific word from The Lord. In the midst of this stillness, He’s been sending me messages letting me know He’s heard all of my prayers. One of the prayers I’d been asking the Lord to consider is pertaining to the carpel tunnel and tendinitis syndrome occurring in my right hand and wrist. My specific prayer has been for the pain to lessen, overall healing of the area and a different prognosis than surgery. Today, I’d like to share with you an update on my condition and what I’ve learned through the power of prayer.
For almost a year now, I’d been dealing with chronic pain and swelling from the carpal tunnel and tendinitis. Back in March, I was told by a hand surgeon / specialist that I’d need to take an Electromyography Exam (more commonly referred to as an EMG). This test would determine how the nerves were responding, if they were badly damaged and if surgery was imminent. At the time, I had no health insurance and couldn’t afford to pay out of pocket for the test. So, I continued my daily bible readings and prayers all while enduring the swelling and the pain for three more months as I wrote my manuscript for my book and the contents on this blog.
Honestly, the pain was intense! It was one of the most painful things I’d ever experienced. There would be days, sometimes weeks, where I’d have to take a break from my beloved writing because any movement would send tingling, stabbing shots of throbbing pain throughout my right arm and body. My days were spent trying to muddle through the dead weight of pain, while my nights, I’d lay in bed crying myself to sleep begging and praying for God to take the pain away, alleviate the swelling and ultimately do away with this ailment once and for all.
“Never stop praying.” (1 Thessalonians 5:17 NLT)
“But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted!” (John 15:7 NLT)
Finally, God sent me a gift — really affordable health insurance. Once my insurance started, I scheduled the test with hopes to be seen right away. Boy was I wrong. Instead, the doctor’s office scheduled my test for one month later. I was appalled that they couldn’t get me in sooner. I was in serious pain for crying out loud and needed immediate answers as to how bad my condition was. As I waited for my appointment date to come around, the hand specialist injected me with a Cortisone shot to help alleviate some of the pain and swelling.
The first week of the injection was brutal. If I thought I was experiencing pain before, it was nothing compared to dealing with the Cortisone injection. Luckily, the pain wore off and I was able to start using my hand and wrist more. As the month of June ended, I anxiously anticipated the end of July for I’d finally be able to receive some answers and a clear direction as to the next step in this carpal tunnel saga. With the months leading up to my test, the narrative being that I’d probably need surgery, I couldn’t wait to have the test done and get proper results. I desperately was against the notion of surgery.
Finally, July 31st came around, and I was off to see the specialist who did the EMG exam. I had no idea what to expect for I had no clue what the test entailed. Had I done my research, I probably would’ve opted out of the exam. As I was checking into the appointment, I was told it would be a little over an hour to get through the entire test. My eyes widened at this news for I had scheduled plans that would possibly have to be pushed back due to my lack of efficient time management. With a big sigh, I glanced at my watch as I sat down in the waiting area. While waiting to be ushered into a room, the doctor came out and placed two hot compresses and two white dry towels over my hands. She informed me of her return in a few minutes after she cleaned the exam room. Baffled at the meaning of the warm compresses, I sat quietly holding my hands together under the towels on my lap as I watched nurses, doctors and patients walk by. After five minutes, the doctor returned to remove the towels and took me back to the exam room.
Once in the exam room, I was finally instructed on how the procedure worked. I would be given a series of three tests, which all consisted of various needles and utensils being placed into my arms, wrists, hands, and neck as a machine shot jolts of static electricity through my body. #SayWhatNow!?!
Yes, you’ve read correctly! I was basically getting electrocuted for the sake of science. Flabbergasted, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. After telling me the ins and outs of the procedure, the doctor gave me an option of opting out of taking the test altogether. With everything I’d been experiencing and all the time it took to get my appointment, I wasn’t going to back down now. I was already in place and was determined to see it through. Although it was going to be more painful then the actual carpal tunnel and tendinitis I’d been experiencing all year long, I knew I needed answers and I couldn’t get them unless I took the test.
While enduring through the painful procedure, I said prayers quietly to myself as I listened to my iPhone belt out my favorite uplifting, Gospel tunes. By the time the test was complete, I was in such an awful state of pain and discomfort that I missed the answer from God that I’d been praying about. Immediately after, the doctor had the results and told me that the test detected carpal tunnel in both my hands, but that it wasn’t nowhere near severe enough for surgery. The carpal tunnel wasn’t as far gone as they initially thought and with proper care, I’d manage and be just fine.
“But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.” (1 John 4:4 NLT)
I guess they didn’t know just how powerful my God is! By the grace of God, and the power of my prayers, The Lord saw it fit that the results would be different than the initial outcome. Instead of what the doctor’s thought it would be, by the end of the test, the doctor told me that it’s not as bad as initially predicted. I wouldn’t need surgery! Boy, am I glad I didn’t cower away in fear at the news of the testing process. I’m so grateful for this news. Upon hearing it and letting it sink in, the news was warmly welcomed as if a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. As soon as the shock and scars of the EMG test wore off (it took almost a week), my hands haven’t been the same. It’s as if the pain and swelling had magically gone away. Hallelujah, praise God for this wonderful miracle!
“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.” (2 Corinthians 12:9 NLT)
I had to learn to get to this place of believing in the power of prayer. It didn’t happen overnight. Although, as I previously stated in my personal testimony in the #ChurchHurt article (click here if you missed it), I was born and raised in the church; but since during that time I hadn’t grown to have a personal relationship with God, for years I often allowed things to happen to me and just accepted the outcome, especially if the diagnosis came from a doctor. Now, that I have a personal, deeply rooted relationship with God, I’ve come to truly understand, appreciate and value the power of prayer. To this day, it still amazes me how it took for me leaving the church in order to get to this place of having deep faith, a daily bible reading routine and a deeply rooted prayer life.
“But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.” (Matthew 6:6 NLT)
So how, you may ask, did I get to this place of faith and development of a prayer life? I took it upon myself to figure out my faith and find out who God was by doing the following five (5) things.
- Downloading the free Bible app by YouVersion and finding a translation that helped me understand how to read the Bible.
- Finding and reading bible plans in the app based on my current mood that helped navigate me to the right scripture passages for my current circumstances.
- Writing down my every thought: the good, the bad, or the downright darkest, most ugliest feelings I could possible have because I needed to vent without fear or judgement from people.
- Writing letters to God asking Him to help me understand who He was, how He could help fix my life and what my purpose in life was. (I definitely needed to know this particular tidbit because I was on deaths door knocking to come in and be taken away from this world).
- Finally, I started opening my mouth, and my mind (through quiet meditation), talking to God as if He was a human being. The same way I would call up my friends to vent my frustrations, to cry on, or to get advice, was the same way I began talking to God. I needed answers and I wasn’t going to make any sudden moves or changes in my life until I received a word of guidance from Him.
Once I embarked on that journey of self healing and faith seeking, I found myself developing a prayer life. Once I started understanding that it’s not scary to talk to God, I began to have a better relationship with Him and ultimately started to learn more about myself. The above steps are exactly what I took to get to this place of peace, joy, and healing. It’s because of this that I now have a deep faith to believe this following scripture to be true.
“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” (Romans 8:28 NLT)
Through developing a prayer life, I’ve witnessed God’s transformation in my life. From working on it daily and consistently, I went from a deeply depressed, grieving, dark-minded, hurt, angry, bitter, anxious, suicidal girl trapped in a woman’s body, to a strong, determined, empowered, joyful, peaceful, happy, loving woman with a vision, purpose and a plan. That’s the true power of prayer!
“Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.” (Ephesians 6:18 NLT)
Again, it doesn’t happen overnight! We must cultivate our relationship with God with the same amount of dedication, energy and time as we do our relationships with people. Our spiritual relationship must become a deeper priority than our personal relationships with boyfriends, girlfriends, spouses, family members, coworkers and friends. It’s truly the only way towards having an overall healthy lifestyle.
I pray today for you who may be just starting out your walk of faith, those trying to figure out their belief in God and for those who already have a covenant with God. I pray that you make time for self healing by spending daily, quality time with Our Father God. I pray that you put aside any pride and pick up a heart of humility to openly share with God all of your cares, burdens, stresses and concerns. He wants you to know Him and He wants to hear from you. So, I pray you give yourself the best gift possible in learning about, knowing, and understanding just exactly who God is and the ultimate power that comes from having a daily prayer life with Him. May He open your mind, comfort your heart and show you who you truly are. In Jesus name, I pray Amen. Be at peace my friend!
Sincerely with love,
Travel photography by IG user: @christofs70