Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Fighting the Flu

My An Arkie's Faith column from the February 5, 2020, issue of The Mena Star

My head felt like someone had shaken it until it bruised inside. My throat was so sore that it was hard to swallow. I alternated between feeling like I would burst into flames and intense chills. I couldn’t remember when I had felt this bad. When I first started feeling sick, I was returning from a trip to the Oregon coast. I just thought I was coming down with a cold and started taking over the counter cold medication. Three days later, I was feeling much worse, and I knew that I was suffering from more than a common cold.

I called the doctor’s office and was able to get in to see the doctor that afternoon. After sticking a swab down my throat until I gagged and sticking another swab up my nose until it felt like it was stabbing my brain, the doctor told me the good news was that I didn’t have strep throat. The bad news was that I had the flu and a sinus infection. He gave me prescriptions for an anti-viral and an antibiotic. He told me to go home and rest.

The next day, in addition to the symptoms that I already had, I developed a toothache worse than I had ever experienced before in my life. Ibuprofen did nothing for the pain. I took Hydrocodone, but it provided no relief. I couldn’t eat. I couldn’t sleep. Sharp pains shot through my mouth, and colorful spots flashed in front of my eyes. I felt like my whole body had been beaten, especially the left side of my face.

Several months ago, my dentist had filled a tooth. He told me that if it ever started hurting again, to come in and we would probably have to put a crown on it. When he opened on Monday morning, I was at his office door asking for an appointment. He was able to see me within the hour, but after taking x-rays and examining the tooth, he told me that he couldn’t find any problems. It was probably an infection. That evening, the roof of my mouth was swollen and extremely painful.

The next morning, I called the doctor and told him about my mouth. He was able to get me in that morning, and after examining me, added another antibiotic to the one I was already taking. After several days, I am feeling better, but my energy levels are low. I am very thankful for the help that I have received from medical professionals.

In Matthew 9:12 (NCV), Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick.” Christian music artist Michael Card wrote a song titled, “Gentle Healer.” It is a favorite of mine. I love the way that it refers to Jesus as the Gentle Healer. “The Gentle Healer came into our town today. He touched blind eyes and the darkness left to stay. But more than the blindness, He took their sins away. The Gentle Healer came into our town today.”

Jesus would come into a town and heal those who were sick. He also forgave their sins. There was something else that Jesus did before he left town. Luke 24:45 (NIV) tells us that Jesus “opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.”

Just like a doctor gives us a prescription to help us get well, Jesus has given us a prescription to help heal us spiritually. We need to take our spiritual prescription so that we can get healthy and stay healthy. The prescription is "The Holy Bible."  We need to take it every day. It is safe and effective.
I have never seen anyone whose spiritual growth has been hindered by reading the Bible. It improves us and makes us healthy in the Lord. Everything in the Bible is there for us to study and learn about God. “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for showing people what is wrong in their lives, for correcting faults, and for teaching how to live right.” 2 Timothy 3:16 (NCV) Religious books, commentaries, and devotionals are helpful, but if you just read them and not the Bible, you'll miss the active ingredient in the prescription. We need to read and study the Bible on our own.

When I read in the Bible of the healing that Jesus did, I notice the compassion that Jesus had as He interacted with the people. He cared for their needs. Matthew 14:14 (VOICE) tells us that, “though Jesus wanted solitude, when He saw the crowds, He had compassion on them, and He healed the sick and the lame.” When Jesus sees you sick and in pain, He has compassion on you. You can speak to Him anytime about how you are feeling and what's going on in your life. You don’t have to make an appointment. He even makes house calls.

Not only does Jesus want to heal you and forgive you, but he also wants to give you rest. He knows that you are tired. He knows that you need rest to heal. In Matthew 11:28,29 (NCV), Jesus says, “Come to me, all of you who are tired and have heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Accept my teachings and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in spirit, and you will find rest for your lives.”

Gentle Reader, come to Jesus, and He will give you rest. Don’t put off going to the doctor. You can’t get well on your own. You need the Gentle Healer. No matter what it is that you are facing right now in your life, Jesus understands. Jesus knows what you are going through. “‘I will restore you to health and heal your wounds,’ declares the Lord.” Jeremiah 30:17 (NIV)

No comments:

Post a Comment