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Very recently, I went on a “retreat” to my best friend Sammie’s house. I must admit, it was the best weekend of my entire life – I learned so much about my precious Daddy!! And learned to love her more, too :). I really want to share what I learned, but I learned so much, there’s no way an amateur writer can combine it all… So I’m gonna do it in bits – maybe a “Jehovah – __” series? I’m assuming they’re all going to overlap in some way or another, but I’ll do my best to keep on task.

Jehovah-Rapha, for you non-Hebrew speakers, means “The Lord is my healer”. (No worries, I don’t speak Hebrew myself. I did a Bible study on the names of God, and I wrote down the different ones in Hebrew.) I went to Sam’s house expecting great things from God, but not healing in the ways I expected! It was really interesting – when I got there, Sam told me, “You know, Michelle, I really feel like this is going to be a great healing experience for you.” Her family is extremely special – it models the Church family so well! And that was where the healing began.

Here’s a bit from my second favorite book (which Sammie introduced to me on this retreat), “Abide in Christ” by Andrew Murray. Totally how I felt, for a long time.

Either way, it was not long before the bright joy of your first love was lost, and your path, instead of being like the path of the just, shining more and more unto the perfect Day, became like Israel’s wandering in the desert – ever on the way, never very far, yet always coming short of the promised rest.

Oh yes, I was thinking. Every day, I read something in the Bible – “Love your neighbor as yourself” – got all inspired, failed through the course of the day, and prayed that night “Wow, God, I’m sorry… I’ll try to do better tomorrow. Can You help me? You know how much I want to love my neighbor…” And the next day, I would try again! BAM! failure struck again. “Hey, God…. this didn’t work! Tomorrow?”

Every day, I came short of that promised rest that our Savior so badly wanted to give me. It was like I didn’t believe that GOD could teach and keep me all day!

It is not the yoke, but the resistance to the yoke, that causes the difficulty; the wholehearted surrender to Jesus, as both our Master and our Keeper, finds and secures the rest.

What? You mean… all I have to do is surrender? But what about loving my neighbor? What about taking up my cross? What about keeping my mind on You, so I’m at peace? What about not letting my heart be troubled? Huh?

And my Beloved answers, “Abide in Me.” (John 15:4).

Abiding in Jesus is nothing but the giving up of oneself to be ruled and taught and led, and so resting in the arms of everlasting Love. … With this grace secured, we have strength for every duty, courage for every struggle, a blessing in every cross, and the joy of life eternal in death itself.

This is where the healing begins! I’m still working on the whole idea of surrendering to God, and especially being pursued by God. I confess, on days that just creeps me out. Yeah, here is where the Enemy sneaks in…

There was the spiritual healing. I can’t do it – but God can, and He wants me simply to surrender. In that surrender is the cultivation of soil ready to grow good fruits! *sigh of contentedness*.

And yes, there was a physical healing too! If you’ve read my blog post about dance, you’ll know my legs are a centimeter different in length. I had to wear a heel lift for dancing, which wasn’t in and of itself a pain. It was such a joy to be dancing that I didn’t care about a heel lift! But Sam and I talked, and she really felt the Holy Spirit leading her to pray for my leg. I didn’t see a point, really, but I reluctantly let her have at it. I felt so blessed afterward!!!

Then, weird things happened. First, I got these strange growing pains in my leg. I was convinced they were from walking… but that glimmer of hope resided in me. “God CAN heal me. I have faith He can.” Then, I stopped using my heel lift – only to find my hip sore again! “What’s up, Lord?” The next week, I took a dance class without the heel lift – strangely enough, it didn’t hurt! The next dance class didn’t hurt my hip either. I ran – which normally makes my hip ache to no end – and it STILL didn’t hurt!

Well – I can’t really tell you if my leg grew. Sammie and I tried our best to measure it, but that didn’t work too well. I can tell you, though, that my Daddy divinely intervened – whether He made muscles stronger or made my leg grow or has numbed it for a while, I don’t know. But I can tell you, it was so refreshing after that step of faith! And even if my hip starts killing me tomorrow, I can tell you this – God can do miracles. He is our Healer!! And He’s still at work, making my stained-glass-bits life into something beautiful.

May I ask you now, to ask your Father to help you take a step of faith… to surrender; to abide in Him. He is at work in You! The power that raised Jesus from the dead is in you, if you’re a believer!!!!
Whee!!! 🙂

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