Have You Put Out Your Net When Coping With Your Illness?

“When He had finished speaking, He said to Simon, ‘Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.’ Simon answered, ‘Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.’ When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break.” (Luke 5:4-6)

Last year I had a falling out with my rheumatologist of over ten years. She was ready to retire, out of options or ideas for my rheumatoid arthritis, and basically decided to try yelling at me to see if that would motivate me to decrease the prednisone I had been trying to get off of for years.

I went through a few days of tears, frustration, anger, and mixed emotions. I knew God had a plan, but finding a new doctor and catching him up on 18 years of my disease, proving myself, getting to know his style, etc. would be emotionally and physically exhausting.

But I prayed about it. God, please send me to the right person. Please give me a doctor who can help me be as healthy as possible, someone who will trust me, who will find delight in me as a patient.

It was as if God told me, “You need to find a new doctor,” and, like Simon, I said, “God, I tried that already! Don’t you remember how hard it was for me to find this doctor who has helped me all these years? Remember when I thought about finding a new doctor a few months ago? I tried already and nothing really worked.”

And God pretty much said, “Put down the net. You haven’t tried this yet with Me, when I said to do so. Try again.”

I put out a net and now I have the most amazing rheumatologist who is a leader among the gluten-free community, who uses herbs as well as all the typical Western medicine models and who truly cares about his patients. (For example, if he is walking by the waiting area and sees you, he will actually wave hello instead of pretend he doesn’t see you.)

In all areas of our life, but especially in our illness arena, it’s easy to tell God, “I already tried that!” when He tells us to try something new. Yes, perhaps you have. And that was on your own strength and wisdom. But now God is saying, “Try it now. See what happens.”

He is waiting to surprise you just like He had all those fish jump into the nets Simon threw out. Who knows what you may discover in your net.

Prayer: There are so many times I have relied on my own strength and have based my future decisions on what my past history has taught me. Lord, teach me to hear You voice louder than my experience, so when you say “Try again!” I am eager to follow Your directions and see what miracles You have in store for me.

About the author:
Lisa Copen is the founder of Rest Ministries and she lives in San Diego with her husband and son. She is gradually learning how to balance motherhood, family, illness, and ministry, but she still knows it will be a lifetime lesson. You can see the books she has written, including, Why Can’t I Make People Understand? at the Rest Ministries shop.

You can now read this on your Kindle. Find out more at http://TodaysDevotionOnKindle.com

Have you ever heard God’s voice, and even though what He told you to do didn’t really make sense you did it anyway? What was the result? How did it make you feel?