Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Faith In The Midst of Hopelessness

For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations. Psalm 100:5

I was twenty one years old when I was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease; a disease of the immune system that causes your body to attack itself, specifically the small intestine. Having suffered with the disease and the horrible misdiagnoses my entire life, it was a relief to finally receive the news. Then it hit me—I have an incurable disease.

At the time, (I’m dating myself) there were only a couple treatments for Crohn’s. The preferred medication being Sulfasalazine, and the less favored drug was corticosteroids. Steroids are less favored because of their numerous side effects and inability to control the disease. I would soon find out that I’m allergic to Sulfa drugs. My only alternative was steroid therapy.

There were times in my late twenties when the pain, exhaustion and constant trips to the bathroom were more than I could bear. The ups and downs caused by the steroids were like being on an emotional rollercoaster, not to mention the damage they can do to your body. And I had to continue working a full time job in order to have medical insurance coverage.

I’ll never forget one night in particular when my pain became so severe that my husband called my mother for help. I was already taking a massive daily dose of steroids, so we knew that a trip to the hospital meant surgery…and surgery is not a cure for Crohn’s, only a temporary solution.

Mama arrived and came to my bedside. She laid her hands on me and prayed. It was hard for me then to understand why she praised God during this difficult time. But the pain immediately left my body, and I praised God right along with her.

There’s a lesson to be learned from Mama. As Christians we should learn to practice our faith even when the circumstances seem hopeless. God’s faithfulness to His children never ceases. So there’s no reason why we shouldn’t be faithful to Him, no matter the situation.