I don’t expect you to believe me. I can only testify.
I was writing an entry at my RA patient’s forum. In the middle of the entry, as I wrote about the spiritual insight I received on Sunday in the ER I put on Gaither Vocal Band’s “Alpha and Omega”
Half way through the song I stopped typing. I was so moved in the Spirit of our Lord that I raised my hands in praise and just sang along. The longer I sang I felt the pain completely and utterly leave my body for the first time in six and a half weeks. By the end of the song my hands–my blissfully pain-free hands-were clenched. Clenched. Not in pain but in fists of truimph as I felt Christ’s mercy and salvation triumph over my temporary state.
I promise you that this God, this salvation, this deliverance is real. And even though the pain will come back–this is my journey for this time assigned for the glorification of God–the peace, the incredible peace and the victory are here. In this time and now and forever.
The entry I wrote at RA Connect is after the jump.
I’m not a screamer. When I’m in pain I recede inside myself, folding up like a wet origami rose. I try to reach inside my head for non pain things on which to focus but it doesn’t always work.
On Sunday the pain started to win and I couldn’t see anything but black and blood. I did the only thing I could think of and asked my husband to read to me from 1 Peter 1.
3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you, 5who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
Even though I didn’t have the temporary peace of the painkillers I felt the lasting peace of God. I felt angels at my head and feet, cradling me in the arms of Christ.
That peace has come to me many times in my RA journey. Sometimes I forget it when I focus on this earth, this time, this crisis. In the continued pain and envy of this week I moved far away from those angels and that Christ. Today as I write about it I am again feeling the presence of the spirit of comfort.
And I realise that that same Sunday was Pentecost.