Posted in Living in Today's World, Security in Jesus, The Grace of God, Trusting God

Chronic Pain and Other Blessings

2 Corinthians 12: 9-10  ” And He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.  Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Was Paul out of his mind when he used the words  “most gladly” and “take pleasure” in describing his list of very unpleasant situations like infirmities, reproaches, needs, persecutions, distresses?  Absolutely NOT!  Rather he was giving us a wonderful lesson on what true reliance on the Lord means.  You might say, “well Paul could say that, but I am different”.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  Today, we as God’s blood bought adopted children NEED to realize that if we suffer these things “for Christ’s sake”, He strengthens and the grace of God will show itself to be stronger than any and all the pains (physical, psychological), sadness, losses, persecutions and distressful times we may experience.  

How can I say that?  For three simple reasons: 1) God’s Word says it   2) I believe God’s Word  3) My personal experience with my Father and Lord Jesus

 2 Timothy 3: 12-14; “Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived . But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them;” (KJV)

“Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it” (ESV)

There are so many places in Scripture we see people of God suffer joyfully.  I honestly can’t say that I jump up and down with joy when I get out of bed everyday… because I know (and feel) the excruciating, chronic pain is still with me; plus what other body part is going out today.  But I can say— I stop for a moment, give all of my day to Him and grab my walker and go.  I could go on about other issues besides my health, but I won’t because it’s ALL in HIS ALMIGHTY hands…  for whatever good HE sees fit— not what I like or want.  In many of today’s churches, there are far too many that believe once they’ve asked Christ to be their Savior… all their troubles will be over.  Well, I’m here to tell you that if you are hearing that from your pulpit; you better get a copy of the Word and read for yourself.  (I guess I should have titled this “No Rose Garden Here Part 2.)

I would like to share a little story.  My 8-year-old granddaughter said it simply!  On the way to daycare a few days ago, my granddaughter said “Ya know mommy I have 2 daddies!”  To that my daughter just paused and said “I know” (thinking of her bio dad and step-dad).  My granddaughter asked “You want to know who they are mommy?”  “Okay, sure… ” my daughter replied.  My granddaughter said ” Well my number 1 Daddy is God!” 

She knows Jesus as Savior and God as her Daddy.  We all know a daddy takes care of us, protects us and more. May all of us have that faith Jesus spoke of when He said “… Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.”  Matthew 18:3

May you grow everyday in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ and have an intimate relationship with the Father through prayer and His Word. ♥ Streim

Posted in Finding Comfort, Listening To God, Living in Today's World, Security in Jesus, The Grace of God

Three Lessons Learned From Brokenness

For any who read my most recent post, I told you I learned three extremely significantly beautiful lessons about our walk with the Lord during times of unbearable pain and mental/emotional suffering.  The lessons:    1) how to deal with the flesh during an experience like this 2) how to continue in our faith   3) how to KNOW our Lord’s ever-present love/care for us.

Since this incident happened on the heals of my posting 2 very passionate messages about standing on the Word of God, I believe it was a “baseball bat to the back” done by one of the enemy’s minions.  I still believe that and I KNOW why the Lord allowed it.  I believe all things in an adopted, blood bought Child of God’s life are controlled by Him.  He is Sovereign above all!  Now some of you may think/feel/believe differently but I’ve experienced too many storms followed by blessings and too many valleys which led to mountaintops with the Almighty waiting there… just as His Word promises!

Before I go any further, I must tell you the day after the epidural steroid shot I physically felt great!  The next day not so great, with recurrent pain and interrupted sleep again.  By day 3, I was worse than before the shot.  Agony doesn’t express it… and the pain wasn’t just the lower left side of the back and left leg, it was from the waist down–both legs, lower abdomen and behind!  I could not sit, walk, lay down… none of the medications worked!  So there I was at 4:00 am walking outside in tears.  I came into the apartment, sat in the chair and prayed.  “Heavenly Father, I feel like Job must have felt with his boils.  But, I thank you for this… I praise you for this… and may you be glorified and honored.  Your will be done, in Jesus name.  Amen”.  I sat there asking myself where did that come from?  It came from a place of complete brokenness!  Then I heard that still, small voice “lay down on the couch and sleep”.  I didn’t question it (even though that couch helped cause the problem)  I just did it.  I fell fast asleep for 2 hours…

That time with the Lord God Almighty, Savior Jesus and Holy Spirit is the answer to how to deal with the flesh during an experience like this, how to continue in our faith and how to KNOW our Lord’s ever-present love/care for us.

Matthew 26: 41 Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

James 1: 2-6 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.  But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.”

Psalm 33: 20-22Our soul waits for the Lord; He is our help and our shield.  For our heart shall rejoice in Him, Because we have trusted in His holy name. Let Your mercy, O Lord, be upon us, Just as we hope in You.”

John 10:28-29 And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand.  My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand”

“God, who foresaw your tribulation, has specially armed you to go through it, not without pain but without stain.”  C. S. Lewis

“The full acting out of the self’s surrender to God therefore demands pain: this action, to be perfect, must be done from the pure will to obey, in the absence, or in the teeth, of inclination”.   C.S. Lewis

I share these Bible verses, quotes from C. S. Lewis and my story in the hope that not only will Our Almighty Lord and Savior be glorified, but that you, my brethren in the Body of Christ may rejoice knowing nothing ever happens in our lives that He hasn’t prepared us for… IF we stay in His Word, in His presence and pray without ceasing.  ♥ Streim

Posted in Everyday News, Finding Comfort, Living in Today's World

He NEVER Leaves Us!


Chronic Pain
Chronic Pain

As followers of this blog you may have noticed I haven’t posted anything since my April 7th message “Are we a people of the WORD?” .   We, as Christians have all heard or made the statement “If you’re going to talk the talk; then ya better walk the walk”.  I say with honesty I will not post anything on this blog that I don’t live by myself.   Thursday April 4th as I studied in John chapter 10 (The Good Shepherd), Scofield referenced Jeremiah 23:1 with John 10:1 so as I often do, I went to Jeremiah 23 and began reading.  I got so caught up in the message, I read through the 28th chapter.  I looked up at the clock— WOW  1:10 pm — I missed my noon medications and snack.  I got up quickly from the couch (too quickly I realize now), my feet went toward the kitchen and my torso stayed in a forward position.  I heard a snap; like a rubber band being stretched to its limit, ready to pelt someone across a room.  I walked two steps before I experienced a twisting, tightening muscle spasm.  Down the leg on the outside, across the toes and up the inner thigh– one humongous ‘Charlie-horse’ (have no idea why they call it that).  I attempted to walk it off and stretch, but nothing helped.  No let up… this thing was constant.  Anyone familiar with the 1-10 pain scale… this was a 12!  I’ve birthed 7 children, and this was like being in labor.  By Friday evening I knew something was wrong (duh) so a friend drove me to the ER.  One of my herniated lumbar vertebral discs decided to “pop”… diagnosis  lumbar radiculopathy.  After giving me 2 shots (dilaudid and tordal–the strong stuff) the doctor wrote out 3 prescriptions for some heavy-duty stuff, let me rest some and sent me home with a referral to my family doctor on Tuesday.  My family doc sent me for an MRI, scheduled an appointment with a specialist and I had to retrieve any previous MRI s to take with me to that appointment.  Now, I am not a pain wimp; but even those super meds did very little to alleviate the constant,  excruciating muscle spasms and loss of feeling in my toes and lower leg area.  For two full weeks I lived in sheer agony with little sleep (maybe 24 hours total) until I saw the neurological pain specialist last Friday the 19th.   The specialist I’d seen 7 years ago for my back issues, so he remembered my condition.  He looked at the new MRI, did some reflex and feeling tests and told me “Well, I don’t like to do surgery until we try shots”.  So the next thing I knew I was in the surgical pain unit of the hospital being prepped for a ‘epidural steroid injection’.  The entire procedure was like an out-patient surgery.  They sedated me, used an x-ray machine to locate the precise spot for the injection, and kept me until I ate a cookie (smile) and drank something.  I was given a follow-up appointment for May 3rd and told by Doctor D. that I’d be back to normal within 2-3 days.  Whoopeee…  I would be able to take care of myself again!  I must tell you I have wonderful neighbors and amazing children.  One neighbor loaned me a recliner and brought me a few meals, another gave me a special pillow and checked up on me 2-3 times a day.  My daughter’s called often  and even helped me out with washing my hair.   I must stop here for today because sitting on this office chair is quite uncomfortable, so I’ll finish up tomorrow.   I learned three very important lessons during this time about our flesh, our faith and God’s caring love.  I will share them with you (hopefully) tomorrow.♥

During that time, my prayers were simple… Father I love you!  My Bible reading was nearly impossible because of the pain and medications, but I did read John 10 everyday on my phone’s KJV app. 

Genesis 28:15 ” And, behold, I am with thee, and will keep thee in all places whither thou goest , and will bring thee again into this land; for I will not leave thee, until I have done that which I have spoken to thee of.”

Hebrews 13:5 ” Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said , ‘I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ “

May your day be blessed with the power and knowledge of His continual presence in your life as His adopted child through the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ! © Streim