If you read my October 25th post from last year or you know me well you know that October 25th is a very special day to me. It holds incredible meaning and significance as ten years ago I had a life-changing surgery that change the course of my life and this was the day that the Lord healed me after doctors told me that there was "nothing" that they could do. (You can read more of my story with my battle with Endometriosis HERE!)
I shared last year the different ways I have celebrated this anniversary over the years. While some of these days and moments have been photographed over the years, many of them have not. The moments that my mind remembers today of precious moments of telling my story to my students over the years as I testified about the Lord's mighty healing power, the laughter between family and friends, the precious phone calls and texts from friends who prayed for the miracle to happen and never stopped believing, my sister calling to celebrate with me, long walks thanking the Lord on year two, and the quiet celebration in my heart every time I see the calendar approaching this special day when doctors said there was "no hope" and yet the Lord spoke differently.
As I think about year ten today I have so many mixed emotions. Emotions of extreme gratitude and humble thankfulness and tears at the Lord's mighty healing power. I also admit that like last year, I have tearful behind-the-scenes prayers of, "why aren't you healing the same way this time Lord?". It is a question that I think so many people have asked behind the scenes (and some of the brave have cried with me).
I recently received an email from the same reader that I shared about last year. This reader wanted to know if my response to their question last year would be any different another year later. (You can read the original question and response HERE.)
As I told this reader, it's really not. Instead I am learning in new ways to walk in the trust that "and if not He is still good". I shared this on instagram earlier this summer, but I used to say this phrase so easily that it practically just rolled off my lips. Did I mean it? Absolutely. But then very hard things in life occur and sometimes you are forced to reevaluate what you used to say so easily...and sometimes someone asks you if you still believe despite those circumstances. I weep for this reader because as we have communicated I have learned of the heartbreak situation surrounding these question in this individuals life and I wish I was well enough to travel and say face to face what my heart is screaming. Yes, absolutely yes!! Circumstances, if we let them can be refining windows into our hearts shining a light on what we believe. The "and if not" parts of life...even if I am never healed, never see my dreams come true, or if the secret longings that are deep inside of me never happen ...it is okay. It doesn't change His goodness.
I promise, readers that despite any circumstances God's goodness is NOT changed. I can attest in new ways and in more marvelous ways then I could years ago. And as I celebrate this 10th anniversary I am brought to my knees by God's goodness. His faithfulness astounds me and His mercies meet each new day. The hard and difficult don't change who He is. I promise...no matter the "and if not"...He is still good...so very good.
Surrendering to God's goodness comes the opportunity to fall more in love with Jesus and who He is and what the Bible states and promises. NOT what I want it to state or promise but what it actually states and promises. And the ten year anniversary is incredibly significant to me.
Did you know that the number ten is very important in the Bible? In the Bible the number 10 is used 242 different times. The word "10th" is used 79 different times. Ten is also viewed as a complete and perfect number. There are major events that deal with the #10 in the Bible including, the 10 Commandments (seen in the book of Exodus), the 10 Elders that were placed at the city gates (seen in the book of Ruth), the phrase "God said" is used 10 times in the book of Genesis, the Passover Lamb was to be sacrificed on the 10th day (Exodus 12:3), the day of atonement was on the 10th day, there were 10 generations until Noah (who was saved from the flood) and then Abraham was the 10th generation from Shem, Noah's son, the tithe that the Israelites gave was 10%, Jesus loved using the number 10 in His parables (10 virgins, 10 lepers, 10 talents, etc.), and there are exactly 10 "I Am's" spoken by Jesus in the gospels.
*smiles* Okay, so you might be asking what do those three things have to do with me celebrating my ten year anniversary and why are they significant to me?
First, scripture has never been shy about speaking about disease OR Jesus' healing diseases. BUT scripture has also showed that sometimes (due to the fact that we live in a fallen and sinful world) disease does exist and healing sometimes happens later than we expect it or in Heaven. (This does not mean that Jesus is not all powerful in fact the exact opposite!)
Second, our all powerful God shows His complete power by being the passover lamb and the day of atonement happened on the 10th day. In this act of unmeasurable love we not only are given the opportunity to accept Jesus as our Lord and be saved but on the cross Jesus conquered EVERYTHING. Including illness. EVERYTHING was conquered on the cross.
Third, Jesus has stated 10 times very significantly who HE is through His 10 I Am's. Knowing this I have a choice to make... every single day... I can choose to act in faith and trust the Lord completely or I can respond to my circumstances sinfully and grow bitter and angry at the ways of the Lord.
There is absolutely no question in my mind of my choice.
Even on the days that I feel discouraged I choose to run to my precious Heavenly Father and lay everything at His feet. And friends, as I spend more time with the Lord and continue to run to Him with all of my questions, fears, disappointments, hurts, and every other emotion He lovingly speaks to my hurting heart. And I am reminded on this tenth anniversary of His incredible grace, His good gifts, His undeserving ways, and the gift of love that He gives.
And the best gift of all? Is the gift that the 10th hour reminds me that Jesus' fulfilled it ALL on the cross... all of the questions, fears, and every other emotion by His work on the cross. And in that there is incredible hope. Hope of a future that the Lord has in store... Hope of beautiful healing here on earth or in Heaven... Hope of living joyfully despite difficult circumstances... Hope of a loving God who loves us abundantly... and Hope of celebrating another ten year healing in the future...
healing from Lyme Disease.