Our Whole30 was going beautifully. I was feeling great, loving the way we were eating, and having fun creating delicious, healthy, and creative meals. At the start of week four, I set out to work out for five days that week. Monday went great: I started Couch to 5k, got some extra walking in, I was feeling good. Well, sort of. I hadn’t been feeling well the past few days, but it wasn’t anything outside the norm for me. Some days, I just don’t feel well. But soon, pain set in. And soon, it (and the nausea) got bad enough that sitting up on the couch was difficult. The next afternoon, after a sleepless, painful night and the inability to move in the morning, my husband was driving me to the ER. Four hours, two IVs, blood tests, and a CT scan later, appendicitis was ruled out and a mystery illness in the running for the cause of my pain. Oh, and my Whole30 was declared over, as it was determined that a high fiber diet like Whole30 is not compatible with my digestive system.
As I sat in the car, half-asleep from the pain and nausea medication they put me on, and worn out from sitting on a hospital bed in the hallway all afternoon, I was overwhelmed with frustration. Here I was, once again trying to build sustainable healthy habits, and my health has the audacity to get in the way, this time landing me in the ER for an afternoon. As I looked over my discharge papers, reading the initial suspected diagnosis, I couldn’t help but wonder why this always has to happen to me.
I am constantly trying to be well. Working towards a healthier, fitter, lighter me has been a continual, long time effort. It hasn’t always been consistent, but it has been often prominent. But something always gets in the way. Injuries, illness, and now, an abnormal CT and the frantic search for a GI doctor in another town because – guess what! – my ER trip took place two days before we were scheduled to move.
God’s timing is perfect, my husband reminded me as I sat slumped in my seat, grumbling about how my body had the worst timing to suddenly let me know it’s falling apart from the inside out. God knew this would happen when it would happen. It’s going to be okay. We’ll get through this.
He was right, of course. Our sovereign God didn’t screw up. He ordained the events of my life before the foundation of the world. He knew this would happen when it would happen. But it was simultaneously hard and comforting to hear, as I sat there with you’re a failure chanting through my mind. You can’t even form healthy habits right. You’re going to be this way forever. Failure, failure, failure.
But over the next week, as I stepped back, was forced to slow down, and even semi-withdrew from social media and this blog, I was reminded so strongly of the sovereignty, love, and grace of our God. His timing is perfect. Always. I couldn’t get in to see the GI the ER referred me to before we left. But, I was able to get in to see my doctor the very next day, and get a referral to see a GI in Greenville our first full day there. And I was able to get in for the extra testing I needed that Monday, before leaving Greenville on Wednesday. I was able to go through the brunt of the pain and preparation for testing in my parents’ home, while my husband was off from work. I got some preliminary answers, and will get more solid answers in a few days. All throughout our road trip, I’ve been feeling fairly well, with the occasional stab of pain or bout of nausea. But all in all, I’ve been okay.
And most importantly, I’ve been at peace. This isn’t to say I haven’t panicked a few times. I have had my moments, and have wondered the worst. But, as always, Jesus is better. He brings perfect peace, even in the midst of uncertainty. My husband has been amazing, patient, and comforting. God has been, and continues to be, sovereign and trustworthy. Whatever happens, happens. Come what may, our God is still good. He is control of everything that happens. Whatever happens with my health, this world is not conclusion. I have a home in heaven to look forward to, where my body will be completed healed from any and all pain and suffering.
So, even though I don’t know what my test results will bring, even though I have hit another bump in the road, even though I look in the mirror and want to cry over what I see, even though I don’t understand, I can trust that my God is good, he is trustworthy, he is sovereign, and he will never leave me or forsake me. Every trial, every difficulty, every moment of uncertainty is intended for my good and for God’s glory. And, by his grace, I will glorify him through all of this, no matter what. Through every setback, every discouragement, every trial, I will praise him and I will give him glory. Even when I don’t feel like it, even when I’m asking why, I want this trial to be used to bring glory to God.
The Lord is my shepherd,
I shall not want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside quiet waters.
He restores my soul;
He guides me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I fear no evil, for You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You have anointed my head with oil;
My cup overflows.
Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life,
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.Psalm 23