"Out of Joint" is the autobiography of a woman with rheumatoid arthritis. I read it this week, filling in the gaps of treatments, symptoms, emotions, and prognosis. Our daughter Kirsten has RA, and some years are better than others, but all are painful.
She has become one of my spiritual mentors. She amazes me with her consistent reading of scripture and prayers, trust that God will see her through each day, and faith in his ability to heal.
Over the years, many of you have prayed for Kirsten, even as we have prayed for your needs and requests. Thank you to each of you, especially since she is in another flare. W and I feel like your prayers wash over the rest of us in the family, giving us the strength to open our hands and release this young woman to God's care.
I would alter God's past course for her, providing she could be as close to him and love him as she does without this heinous sickness. I look back with sorrow, wishing she had been healthy, with fun teen years and a family of her own in her 20s, instead of enduring painful symptoms that require joint replacements and powerful meds.
But God's ways are definitely not our ways, and his thoughts are beyond understanding. Sometimes resignation to his will is the most excitement we can muster. Throughout, we continue to hope and pray that his plans for Kirsten's future include remission and complete healing... and that God's answers to our prayers on your behalf are more bearable.
*Then Job replied to the LORD: . . . "I take back everything I said, and I sit in dust and ashes to show my repentance."
After the LORD had finished speaking to Job, he said to Eliphaz the Temanite: "I am angry with you and your two friends, for you have not spoken accurately about me, as my servant Job has. So take seven bulls and seven rams and go to my servant Job and offer a burnt offering for yourselves. My servant Job will pray for you, and I will accept his prayer on your behalf. I will not treat you as you deserve, for you have not spoken accurately about me, as my servant Job has."
So Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite did as the LORD commanded them, and the LORD accepted Job's prayer.
When Job prayed for his friends, the LORD restored his fortunes. In fact, the LORD gave him twice as much as before! Job 42:1, 6–10 NLT
*I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.
For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time. 1 Timothy 2:1-6 NIV