Tag Archives: health

Sorry for the Silence

I’m sorry for the silence. I have not forgotten you, but unexpected events changed what was meant to be a summer break from writing into a difficult and trying time for my wife and I.

It started with the prolonged acute illness and death of a loved one which took most of our time and energy. On top of which my cancer treatment has not progressed as expected. This has left us leaning on Jesus as never before and is taking us way beyond our own capabilities. We have been here before, but this is a ‘biggy!’  As my wife remarked the other day, “This is the biggest challenge of your life” and I replied that it was also a challenge for my life.

Jesus is taking us through and when the time is right I hope soon, God willing,  to be back writing with renewed inspiration from our experiences. I wish to thank those who have commented, expressed concern and for your prayers.

In the meantime you will find a weekly selection of my posts on Sitting Under My Fruit Tree.

New Year Blessings

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Filed under bible, Christian, family, illness, personal

Stick and Carrot

Speaking with a friend the other day, he asked me if I loved and accepted myself – meaning in the same way God does – and I replied about eighty percent. He said he felt he didn’t have a very good view of himself, so settled for twenty five percent.

I’m convinced that this was one of the factors that contributed towards my chronic fatigue syndrome. Continue reading

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Filed under Christianity, chronic fatigue, family, healing, health, illness, Jesus, personal, relationships, spiritual

Carer or Sharer

This is a personal account of how I have lived with chronic illness for over thirty years and how it has been used to change my life. A husband’s viewpoint.

My wife was a real carer. It was part of her make-up. She would have made a good nurse, but gave herself sacrificially to being a mother, wife and home-maker.

After about nine years of marriage we moved to the Cornish coast because of my work. To live by the sea was like a dream come true. We saw it as a new start. Within the first year however, things began to go wrong.

My wife was already experiencing pain in her feet and not long after arrival, she was diagnosed with chronic rheumatoid arthritis, a progressive and disabling autoimmune disease. This ‘sentence’ came as a shock for her and she was quickly admitted to a hospital in Bath for three weeks specialist treatment. Within days of returning home however, she had news of her mother’s deteriorating health and travelled up country to see her. Her mother had painfully struggled for years with rheumatoid arthritis and it was our plan for her to come and live with us, once we had settled in and prepared a room for her.  Unfortunately this wasn’t to be, as she passed away ten days later. Continue reading

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I Believe in Miracles

Some years ago, I had a very humbling experience. My wife suggested I went see a lady in the village whose husband was very ill. When she showed me in, I saw that her husband was barely conscious. She said he was suffering from a tumour on the brain and the prognosis wasn’t good. I helped shave him, but before I left she said, “Only a miracle can save Jimmy now.” Such was my fairly new faith, that I quickly replied, “I believe in miracles.”

I visited again and after several visits, I noticed her husband had deteriorated further and had slipped into a peaceful coma. She continued to care for him and lovingly conversed with him,  even though he couldn’t respond. We didn’t know whether he could hear, but who was to say he couldn’t.

This was a completely new experience for me. I felt inadequate and extremely humbled by what I saw. However, I felt a part of what was happening and just gave what little I could and did my best to answer her searching questions. Each time before I left, she asked me to say “a little prayer.”

As the weeks and months passed by, I saw no physical change in her husband, but something was happening for her. One day, after we had prayed, she asked me if I could buy her a Bible. It wasn’t long after, that her husband passed away. The miracle that we had been praying for didn’t happen, at least not in the way we expected. She came to know Jesus personally and was a changed woman. That in itself is a wonderful miracle.

What I learned from this experience, was that God sees the big picture and always works to the good.  Years later and I still believe in miracles – and that includes healing of all kinds, including chronic fatigue syndrome – although I have personally only experienced what I would call ‘minor’ miracles.  Even so, I am always amazed at how  and what God does when He is given a free hand.

My wife and I have things in our lives that seem without solution, but we are fully expectant for miracles in our lives and that goes for our family and friends too. I know that if we are completely surrendered and committed  to God, He will act in awesome ways. The ‘how’ and ‘when,’ we have to leave to Him of course.

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Filed under Christian, Christianity, chronic fatigue, healing, health & wellness, illness, lifestyle, personal, spiritual

The Pain and the Presence

Having suffered from chronic fatigue syndrome for a number of years has  given me a just an inkling of what it could be like for someone who has experienced far greater pain than me.

Lying here, Father,
I know You are there.
I don’t feel your Presence, but
I do feel the pain and discomfort
that tries to take over
and invade my fatigued soul.
Every aching muscle and sinew
vying for attention and
threatening to melt away the hope.

But as I look to You,
I know You are with me,
feeling my every feeling.
And as I keep on looking
and looking and looking,
reaching out to You,
minute by hour,
heart to Blessed Heart,
Your love seems to take over,
in a way I don’t understand.
Fear goes out the window,
faith and hope rise
and the pain grows dim
just for now –

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Filed under Christian, Christianity, chronic fatigue, healing, health, health & wellness, illness, lifestyle, personal, spiritual

Walking Out Our Healing

I’ve just been reading the New Testament account of Jesus’ encounter at the healing pool – John 5: 6. On the face of it, it does seem that Jesus is being a bit harsh? Here is this sick man lying by the side of the pool, complaining that there is no one to help him in – they are all too busy looking after number one! And Jesus asks him if he really wants to get well. Then tells him to “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” Presumably Jesus didn’t even lend him an arm?

I tried to relate this to my own experience:

I’ve been coping with chronic fatigue syndrome for several years. It was terrible at first, like having the rug pulled from under me. My strength had gone and I was pitched into a world of forced inactivity, pain and discomfort – and the rest!

My first response was to look to God for answers. After all, I believed in a God who heals today! In my searching and as I surrendered to God in the situation, I received His promise to heal me personally. Slowly, very slowly, I began to change, learn new ways and even grew stronger. However, I still experienced relapses at frequent intervals, which I found extremely disappointing and debilitating. I just couldn’t understand how, despite all my requests, God could continue allowing it to happen. It seemed to me, that although I believed He had promised to heal me, He was doing nothing about it! I was even angry with God!

When you are continually sapped of energy and just when you think you are making some progress, you are knocked down again and again, it can be very discouraging. It is so easy, when the medics don’t have any lasting solutions, when those around you are getting on with their – successful? – lives and you are left on the sidelines to cope on you own, to get into a ‘victim’ mindset of rejection, thinking no one cares!

It was a jolt to realise that I was angry – and with God! Taking responsibility for this was the catalyst to get me to change my way of thinking. God wasn’t knocking me down. Far from it, He was for me! It came to me that God could be saying something like, “I’ve already done what you asked, so what are you waiting for?” I did not receive instantaneous healing, but this change in attitude heralded an acceleration of the healing process.

I had to accept that once my eyes were opened to the truth, there was no room for passivity. We need to take action, however small. I believe that as I walk with Father, He will meet me on the way.

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The Seventy-five Percent Rule versus Intimacy

I am enjoying a period where I am stronger and best of all, the fog has lifted. To be clear-handed with unclouded thought processes is deliciously exquisite and I revel in it! It’s like a breath of fresh air. I know enough now though, not to make any special claims, but just to be thankful to God that this is how it is today. If it’s the same, or even better, in a year’s time, that will be a different matter.

I have also learnt that I have to be especially careful at times like this. It is so easy to get carried away when I have a spurt of energy and overdo things. I have to be aware of the danger. Adrenalin kicks in and it can feel like I can go on forever and before long I’m back into relapse again. You cannot live on adrenalin, it just does not work. I have been an adrenalin junkie in the past and I discovered where that can lead.

This is where the ‘sacred’ 75% rule for chronic fatigue sufferers comes into play, although I have never found it easy to apply. For example, what if you are out for a walk? How do you know when to turn back and still have 25% energy in reserve at the finish, without being finished yourself? There has to be something else!

The something else for me is intimacy with Father God. Trying to stay close to Him and having a peace, knowing that what I am doing is right. I know that is when the Holy Spirit provides the strength needed and I am at my most efficient and economical with energy. In other words, I am in the flow. So there is a supernatural help, but at the same time I am human and afterwards have to rest and recoup for the next time.

This poses the question. What is the difference between Holy Spirit power and adrenalin? I could come up with a response, but I am sure there are those who could provide a more theological answer.

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