Thank you to those of you who still pray for me and haven’t forgotten my health struggles. Yes, I’m still having issues, although I have to acknowledge that in a lot of ways I am much better. I’m still having problems with brain fog (I’m picturing Tom Hanks waving his hands around his head saying “Brain Cloud! Brain Cloud!” Can you name that movie?) which make it hard for me to read, think, write and type. Also breathlessness. Other than that, I am doing quite well. My stamina is pretty darn good and I am maintaining a normal schedule. Yes, I do plan to go on trek next week. I am trusting God—He called me to go on trek so by golly He’d better see to it that I make it, that’s all.
So in church last week I was pondering my dilemma, which continues to be not knowing how to pray about this problem of mine. I have been promised that I will heal. There doesn’t seem to be much point in asking in every prayer that God will heal me. I know He will. And it doesn’t seem all that appropriate to ask Him to heal me “today” or “soon.” I can’t believe that just my asking will change His timing. (Although I can’t say that I haven’t asked those things as well.)
So here’s what I thought.
What I want—or, what I feel justified in asking, anyway--is to be without fear while I wait for this promised blessing, to feel God near me or to have some sense of light breaking through while I walk in the darkness. Fear is an interesting thing. I know that it is the opposite of hope and peace, and that it implies a lack of faith and a lack of living in the moment. I’m not even sure what it is that I fear. But I have no doubt that I need to banish it. So as I pray, I ask to have it removed.
Which doesn’t seem exactly right because there are so many scriptures that admonish us to “fear not” and “let not your heart be troubled”—that must mean that whether I fear or not is UNDER MY CONTROL, not God’s. That I have the power inside myself to resist the temptation to fear. (So it's wrong to just lob that ball right back at God, saying "OK, if you won't take away the burden, at least take away the fear.)
Hmmm. So how do I get rid of it then? Maybe that’s what I should pray for: guidance on HOW to do it. Sometimes I manage to do it, to banish fear and live moment-to-moment. I actually conscientiously set aside the panic of not feeling well and of having frightening symptoms and somehow put myself into a place of “nevertheless” as I go through the day. During those times when I manage to do it, I visualize myself being in the hollow of God’s hand (cue too-often-for-Mormons-music).
While I was trying to picture myself in God’s care, the image came to me of me being carried by Him in a little basket. Which reminded me of an infant car seat—you know, the kind that you haul around until one arm is six inches longer than the other while the kid placidly gazes at the world going by. So I pictured myself in this car seat, watching the world going by, trusting that my parent was taking me somewhere interesting, and that all I need to do is sit back in the carseat and watch the world.
And with this image came the realization that this is what becoming like a child really means. It is to be carried, and to be complacent about the fact that I’m not causing the forward motion myself but that it is happening, and that the destination is worthwhile.
I can do that, I think.
("I can do that; that I can do." Name that movie, too.) (It is, after all, Name That Tune Friday.)