Thursday, January 2, 2014

Dealing with Chronic Pain


Oh my, I bet the title for this post grabbed a lot of people! Chronic pain is something I have been living with for four years now. It is a part of my daily life. I certainly struggle with how much to share here, as blogs are so public and of course, open to ridicule, trolls, and the like. But I have decided, that if my story can help someone, I will share it, here, publicly with all of you. 

The latest diagnosis is peripheral neuropathy. I lucked out and have it in both feet. It is painful, it is at times debilitating to my day(s). There is no cure, only pain management. That bit of information can cause depression and just a general mix of emotions that are hard to put a finger on.

When I can I will elaborate on things, but my hope is to share some encouragement-when God brings it to me.  Today in my quiet time this verse spoke to me:

Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.
1 Peter 5:7 The Message Bible

This verse is what I needed today. I needed to be reminded that he cares for me affectionately and watchfully. Those two words right there nailed it, to my mind, how God feels about me, about you. I think we forget our God is a God of affection--like an earthly Father, but so much greater. 

Dictionary.com gives this translation of watchful:  

vigilant or alert; closely observant: The sentry remained watchful throughout the night.

We, (I), just can't fathom God's bigness, His greatness.  God is not some spirit flitting about from soul to soul. He sees all, all the time. Can you understand that? I can't. Yet, this verse tells me he is like a sentry, a guard, a loving father, vigilantly watching over me day and night. That is just so HUGE to me! While I sleep, when I wake, when I cry, He is there.

I don't use The Message Bible , but the devotional I am using by Joyce Meyers mostly uses this translation. I admit to liking it, but also swinging back to the NKJV to see the translation for the daily verse. My women's study bible had this quote by Anne Bradstreet in the margin.

"Iron til it be thoroughly heated is incapable to be wrought; so God sees good to cast some men into the furnace of affliction, and then heats them on his anvil into what form he pleases."

Why am I suffering? Why this pain? Why no answers? Why now? Are these questions questions you have asked yourself? I have, sometimes daily. Then, as a follower of Christ, you have to ask yourself, well why not me? God never promised an easy peasey life, did he. We are told to be conformed to His image. Left to ourselves would we really take the time necessary to do this? If your anything like me, sinful, selfish, etc., probably not. Oh, we have the best of intentions, and sometimes we hit the mark, but for the most part, we all go along with our day, giving a nod to God and thanking Him here and there for the blessings (and there are many) He has given. Yet, He wants more. And these trials, these refining fires are what He uses to shape us, to draw us closer. At least I think so. I have no pat answers--only my own discoveries through this all. 


But today, I know this: God cares for me affectionately and watches over me each minute of every hour, of every day.  Amen!


10 comments:

  1. Hello Sweet Suzanne,
    I, too, have chronic pain, though of a different kind. May God bring you peace, supernatural healing, and health in the coming year.
    Blessings,
    Laura of Harvest Lane Cottage

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you dear Laura, I will pray for you too:-)

      Delete
  2. I have had chronic pain for about 18 months now. It recently got worse and I am fighting through the doctors to get one to act, and not just prescribe. I don't want brain drugs to treat leg pain! Anyway, I watched a film last night called "This is Our Time" that really spoke to me. (It's a netflix instant stream if you have Netflix.) It really told me that I am a follower by what I am, rather than what I do. I must be patient, because if I am in this place, it must be where God wants me, for reasons I don't understand. Which tells me that God is not "not" answering my prayers, He just has better ideas than I do!

    God bless you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Barbara,
      Yes, your last sentence had me nodding in agreement! How true that we do not understand all this. I would encourage you though to find the right doctors, don't give up. Relief from pain that is chronic is not being cowardly, one's body was not meant to suffer so, we are mere humans. I have found using painkillers when it is so bad, allows me to recup and refocus. I had gone almost 3 years without a nights sleep, just sleeping 2-3 hours here and there. I never realized the exhaustion I was suffering and how my body actually felt better when it started getting some consistent rest. Don't be too hard on yourself, the Lord doesn't want that, He just wants us at the foot of His throne I think-totally surrendering to Him.
      God bless you,
      Suzanne

      Delete
  3. Yes, Suzanne, your title did get my notice.
    Thank you for sharing. I'm sorry to hear of your struggle. I know first hand that the chronic pain of neuropathy "is" a struggle. Like Martha, you are learning good things at the feet of Jesus.
    I try not to measure the success of my day so automatically by how much I accomplish. I'm learning to think differently. It can be bewildering. Take care, my dear. You sound like a courageous person to me. Karen A.




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    Replies
    1. Dear Karen,
      I knew you had a health issue too, didn't realize you too were struggling with nerve issues. As you, I am also learning not to be too hard on myself for not getting all the things done I had previously been able to do. I have learned I need to say no to many things asked of me. My focus is even now more intently on my family and still trying to fulfill my role as wife/mother/grandmother, as best I can. All else must wait. I harbor no guilt for saying no to others now. I am not sure how courageous I am. The pain gave me a good cry tonight, but my devoted husband rubbed my feet and brought some relief to the situation. I know too, that Dean and your children are great supports to you. We are fortunate and blessed women:-) Thank you for stopping by and sharing, it means alot to me.
      Warmly,
      Suzanne

      Delete
  4. Oh dear friend, I am just so sorry that you are still struggling with your pain. I am blessed and have not had this cross to carry. I wish I could just take it away from you. You are in my thoughts and prayers.This must be difficult for your husband too. Much love,
    Linda

    ReplyDelete
  5. ***Dear Barbara, somehow I deleted your comment when I went to publish. Here is your original comment--so sorry for the confusion! ~Suzanne

    scmom (Barbara) has left a new comment on your post "Dealing with Chronic Pain":

    I have had chronic pain for about 18 months now. It recently got worse and I am fighting through the doctors to get one to act, and not just prescribe. I don't want brain drugs to treat leg pain! Anyway, I watched a film last night called "This is Our Time" that really spoke to me. (It's a netflix instant stream if you have Netflix.) It really told me that I am a follower by what I am, rather than what I do. I must be patient, because if I am in this place, it must be where God wants me, for reasons I don't understand. Which tells me that God is not "not" answering my prayers, He just has better ideas than I do!

    God bless you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Suzanne has left a new comment on your post "Dealing with Chronic Pain":

      Hello Barbara,
      Yes, your last sentence had me nodding in agreement! How true that we do not understand all this. I would encourage you though to find the right doctors, don't give up. Relief from pain that is chronic is not being cowardly, one's body was not meant to suffer so, we are mere humans. I have found using painkillers when it is so bad, allows me to recup and refocus. I had gone almost 3 years without a nights sleep, just sleeping 2-3 hours here and there. I never realized the exhaustion I was suffering and how my body actually felt better when it started getting some consistent rest. Don't be too hard on yourself, the Lord doesn't want that, He just wants us at the foot of His throne I think-totally surrendering to Him.
      God bless you,
      Suzanne

      Delete

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