My Strength On the Heights

Well, hello there. I thought I would post one more time before my treatment next week. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I was able to get into a very successful clinic for a four-day treatment after waiting well over a year for an appointment. People come from all over the U.S. to see these doctors and I feel privileged to finally be able to go there. I’m looking forward to it but also covet your prayers that the die-off reactions won’t be too severe. I heard that one of the treatments they do is an ionic foot bath so we decided to get one and I tried it out last night. I might be dying. It’s detoxing, for sure, but I’m just so sensitive. I may be re-thinking traveling back and forth each day since the clinic is more than two hours away. I welcome ALL THE PRAYERS. If you want to follow my progress, feel free to friend me on Facebook. I’ll try to update as I am able.

It’s been a rough little patch for me during this weird February heat wave. While most people are celebrating, I’ve fallen into a deeper depression. My biggest POTS trigger is heat and I can’t get even the tiniest bit too hot without feeling foggy, dizzy, and faint. I couldn’t help but think that if the cold is over already (and we barely had a winter. I know some of you will disagree with me on that), I have months… MANY months to feel like absolute poop. I’ve tried to snap out of this ‘blah’ because supposedly the treatment next week is going to cure my POTS. I want so badly to believe it. But you know how I struggle with hope.

I’m afraid of more disappointment crushing me. But I end up expending so much energy trying not to hope that I get sicker and I’m usually unsuccessful anyway. Sometimes hope is an unstoppable force, thanks be to God. And this time I am better equipped to handle the disappointment. Previously, I don’t think I knew what to do with my wounds so I just let myself sink down into them. Of course, they absolutely need to be felt. But now I know how to avoid being irreparably crushed by them. I am no longer afraid to run straight to God and lift up my wounds, to show them to my Father, and to limp into His arms, asking Him to hold me while I pour out the pain. This time I’m trying to hope. Old habits die hard so, at the advice of my wise counselor, I’ve been doing my best to thank God for whatever does or does not happen next week. It’s not easy because, I’m telling you right now that if I don’t feel much better, my heart will be broken again. But thankfully I know what to do with that heartbreak now.

I’ve chosen Habakkuk 3:19 as my theme verse, “The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to go on the heights.” God is my strength through whatever happens. He is our strength even, as it says in verses 17-18, “though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.” I also have issues with ‘joy’ but God’s working on that in me as well. Even if nothing changes after next week, I will still love You, Lord. I will still run to You with my heartbreak.

Through all of this, God is my strength. I looked at the cross-references of this verse to discover what strength actually means here and, in Deuteronomy 33:29, it means that God is our shield and helper. He is our glorious sword. I love that. In Psalm 46:1-5, it means He is our very great reward.

What are the heights on which He enables us to stand? Most of the cross-references talk about battle and trampling on enemies. I am able to go into this battle with God’s strength and I can stand in the presence of my enemy and whatever he uses against me, whether it be Lyme, damaging lies, or shame. With God’s help, I can trample them. I don’t think I can go so far as to say it means I will be delivered from Lyme (though I very well may be), but that I can stand and fight, knowing that my reward is more of God.

I quite frequently watch deer outside my window and nothing seems to stand in their way. They bound over everything. I did a little research on their feet to see just what God is doing when He “makes my feet like the feet of a deer.” The outer hoof of a deer absorbs the shock of every step and gives traction on soft or wet surfaces. The inner hoof provides a cushion for hard surfaces. For these reasons, deer rarely stumble even when leaping into unknown territory.

So next week, I leap. I don’t know what I will find but, with God as my strength, I will not stumble. I will stand firm in the hard places and fight the lies of the enemy knowing that, no matter what happens, God is my very great reward.

Song I’m feeling: Sound of Surviving, by Nichole Nordeman

“They told me I’d never get to tell my story. Too many bullet holes.
It would take a miracle.
These voices inside my head like poison, trying to steal my hope,
silencing my soul.
But my story is only now beginning. Don’t try to write my ending.
Nobody gets to sing my song.
This is the sound of surviving. This is my farewell to fear.
This is my whole heart deciding, I’M STILL HERE.
I’m still here and I’m not done fighting.
This is the sound of SURVIVING.
These pieces, the ones that left me bleeding, intended for my pain
became the GIFT You gave me.
I gathered those pieces into a mountain. My freedom is in view.
I’m stronger than I knew.
And this hill is not the one I die on.
I’m gonna lift my eyes and I’m gonna keep on climbing.”

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Author: Karina Baker

Hello, my dear friends! Glad to see you here. Thank you for reading about my beautiful rubble - my struggles with life, faith, and autoimmunity. Feel free to share your stories in the comments. My love and prayers to all of you!

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