On Thursday, August 11, 2016, I experienced stroke symptoms.
I had awakened from a nap to find the left side of my face, hand, and foot numb. I had difficulty moving my hand and walking.
I knew I was in trouble. The first thing I did was pray, seeking the Lord as to what to do. I solicited prayers from the prayer warriors at my church. And based upon Godly counsel, I sought medical attention.
My blood pressure was sky high. Many of you know that my grandmother died of a stroke at the age of 47 and I am not too many years beyond that age.
Praise God, my blood pressure was brought down with medication. Now, here is where the story gets really interesting.
I had a brain CT scan, however no evidence of a recent stroke was seen! However, there was evidence of an “old” stroke on the scan. I have never had any stroke before of which I’m aware.
My personal belief is that the “old” stroke was not old at all, but the new event that God healed. The doctor could not find anything new in my brain. The prayers of the righteous do avail much!
At this juncture, I still have some numbness in my fingers and toes on the left, but it is getting better every day.
God is still in the healing business. I am learning something else through this experience:
This situation came to pass, but God’s word comes to last!
Now, some of you may wonder: “She is always talking about health – eating right and exercising. And yet, this affliction still happened to her. What is the point?”
Well, the Lord did not promise that we would have a trouble-free life – even as Christians. Such are the effects of living in our fallen world:
These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world (John 16:33)”
With that being said, I must take responsibility for my part: In my ignorance, I did not take my blood pressure medication the way I should have. I said to myself, “The Lord will heal me.”
Well, the Lord never told me to stop my medication! I am just being transparent here.
Proverbs 3:5-6 says,
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.”
Failing to take my medication properly was me leaning upon my own understanding, not following God’s direction. It was presumptuous and I would never advise someone else to do that.
Hear this: Taking medication does not mean that you lack faith in God’s ability to heal!
Please do not make the same mistake I did. Seek the Lord first for every decision. You will know it is the Lord speaking to you when you have peace in your inner man. If there is doubt, anxiety and confusion, keep seeking Him.
Absent a specific word from God in your situation, then be obedient to the wisdom that He has given to you already. He speaks through His word, personal revelation (which agrees with His word), and Godly counsel (which also agrees with His word):
Where there is no counsel, the people fall; But in the multitude of counselors there is safety (Proverbs 11:14).”
I eat healthy and exercise because God made known to man that these actions support our health.
I believe that my affliction would have been much worse, perhaps even fatal, if I had not been doing what I know to do in the eating and exercise arena already. I thank God for His mercy!
During this experience, I recalled one of Jesus’ temptations in His wilderness experience (see Matthew 4:1-11). I thought about how Satan tried to tempt Jesus to throw Himself off the pinnacle of the temple to prove who He was and what God can do.
He even twisted a scripture to try to convince Jesus to kill himself!
However Jesus said to him, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’”
This scripture refers to an incident in Exodus 17:1-7. The people wanted water in the wilderness and asked for it, however they did so in a manipulative way.
They asked, “Is the Lord among us or not?”
The implication was that if the Lord did not do what they wanted Him to do or act in the time-frame that they wanted, then that must mean the Lord was not with them.
But God had already said Exodus 6:7:
I will take you as My people, and I will be your God. Then you shall know that I am the Lord your God who brings you out from under the burdens of the Egyptians.”
Whether in the wilderness or in the Promised Land, in affliction or in wellness, we must be convinced of one thing:
Outward circumstances should never convince us otherwise, nor should we attempt to try to manipulate God to change our outward circumstances as proof that He is who He says He is or that His word is true.
Tempting God goes along the lines of, “If you are God, then you would…”
If that is the case, then we fall right into the snares of the enemy! Rather, our game plan should be from Philippians 4:6-7:
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
Do not move unless God tells you to – either through His word, through personal revelation, or through Godly counselors.
I am still believing the Lord for complete restoration of feeling in my left fingertips and toes. In the meantime, I will continue to do what is known – taking my medication properly, monitoring my blood pressure, as well as continuing to eat properly and exercise.
I have experienced its benefits, both in my daily ability to enjoy life and in prevention. That is the point.
I am doing my part and letting God be God in the rest!
Be blessed in health, healing, and wholeness,
Author of the Take Back Your Temple program