Photo by Erin E. Photography
When I was 12 years old, it was discovered that I had an inherited disease that would eventually cause my body to become deformed. In fact, the deformation had already begun. When I was 13 years old, the doctor told my parents that my internal organs were being compressed and I must have surgery or I would die. The first surgery included the implanting of a rod and the grafting of a bone—but that surgery failed, as did the second surgery. I spent weeks in the hospital. After a third surgery, I was sent home with a cast that covered nearly half my body. I wore that hot, heavy, itchy cast for nine months—not able to shower, sit at my desk at school, or wear normal clothes. Unfortunately, after the cast was removed, the deformity continued to worsen.
Because the doctor was able to only partially correct my problem, chronic pain and embarrassment have plagued my adult years. Now, decades later, when I reflect upon the “Why?” I know that God has worked everything out for good in my life and the lives of others. I am now a health care professional and I know that I am more empathetic, compassionate, gentle, and understanding with my patients because of my own suffering.
I also believe that because I spent so much time in the hospital and recovering indoors, I developed a profound appreciation for nature. I can remember when I was first strong enough to get outside a bit while recovering from the surgeries. I walked around the perimeter of our backyard, which was separated from a farm behind us with a fence lined with trees and brambly bushes. The sky was a beautiful blue, the birds were singing, and the sun was warm on my skin. I soaked it in and experienced pure JOY and GRATEFULNESS to God. Being denied God’s beautiful creation for so long had given me new eyes and a new heart of appreciation for the beauty of nature. My eyes were opened to the artistry of God, and to this day, my eyes remain open to the wonderful free gifts we have in God’s creation.
A Million God Stories is a Christ-centered ministry which offers a platform for Christians from all streams of Christian faith to give praise for how God has worked in their lives. Christ heals in infinitely creative ways and we acknowledge that His way of helping may differ from person to person.