Walking by Faith, Through Pain and Illness

In the following post you will find a collaborative effort between my loving aunt, Vicki Lee, and myself regarding living with Psoriatic Arthritis (Pain and Illness) and Walking in Faith through it. Also, I’ve added my testimony. It’s a guide about how to live through the pain, and how to proclaim healing over your body! Let me tell you – It works!!!!! I believe that this is a spiritual key that I have been needing in the past 5-6 years since the diagnosis of PsA and all of the junk that comes along with it. Praise God for an amazing Aunt who loves me enough to walk this journey with me! I pray that this post helps someone else who may be in a similar situation. It is a long read, but it’s worth it! If you would like to leave a comment, please do!

Mainly the words in this guide are to her credit, from what God has already taught her, through His word. Sometimes God puts people in our lives who are more spiritually in tune with Him, and He uses them to teach others about his Word. Over the past few months, she has became my spiritual mother, which I am so thankful for her! By His guidance, and her knowledge of the Word, once I put the information down on paper I felt compelled to share it here. I know there is someone out there who has been suffering like me!!!

Isaiah 43:1-5 “But now, this is what the Lord says – he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you O Israel: Fear not for I have redeemed you and I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel your Savior… Since you are precious and honored in my sight and because I love you… Do not be afraid, for I am with you…”

Remember, you aren’t alone in this. He is your constant companion. I imagine Him holding your hand as you walk through this. We don’t understand why healing doesn’t come instantly, but He gave us the tools to walk through it and not drown in it and not be burned. He is our hope even when we feel hopeless.

My testimony: 

Last week during my first severe flare, my Aunt began trying to teach me spiritually how I should be dealing with the pain and this illness. As most of you know who have the disease, along with the pain comes a number of other ailments: depression, fatigue, frustration, unreliability, and tears – so many, many, many tears! When you have those other factors, you tend to lose faith and get a feeling of giving up. What I didn’t realize was this was exactly the opposite of what I needed to be doing. 

For the first flare, I had to take three days off work. Then I missed yesterday, because of a second flare up, which will give me a four day weekend to allow my body to rest. The doctor says my medication isn’t working, and she’s working on getting it changed (from Otezla to Simponi). Boy, I did not realize how much I’ve been depending on the word of man until yesterday! 

Yesterday was the first day I took some of the below steps. I woke from a nap with much less pain than earlier in the day, and the day before. This morning, I woke with no pain and complete movement in my body! 

Until my mind is right, and my soul is in line, I will continue with this change in medication per my doctor’s orders, until the day comes when my total healing and restoration of my body comes to pass through putting into practice the below keys. 

So, are you ready to give this a try?!

Illness and pain are tools the enemy uses to pull us down. When the pain comes, it makes me temporarily disabled – I can’t wipe my butt, I can’t get out of bed, and sometimes I can’t feed myself. The list of “I can’t” is so long during a flare it can be very discouraging and very overwhelming. 

So, how do we overcome these challenges?! I’m so glad you asked…

There are 6 ways listed below that I am going to start practicing more often in my daily life to get through the pain and suffering of my illness! I encourage you to do this along with me for any ailment, disease, or illness you may be facing. 

Train your spirit to rule instead of giving into the reality of your situation. When your thoughts and actions aren’t aligned with what the Word says, you have to train your mindset. After a while, your thoughts and actions will be right and in line with the Word. By doing this, it puts you in a place to accept your healing and restoration. By reading this guide, you are taking the first step in order to train your spirit to rule! When negative thoughts enter your mind, pull out your bible and dig into reading God’s word. You can also pray over the following verses:

“Apply your heart to instruction and your ears to words of knowledge.” ‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭23:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

“Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.” ‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭58:8‬ ‭NIV‬

Worship God through the pain! Walk through the pain, with thanksgiving in your heart. You can do this two ways; the first – listening to praise and worship music and thanking God from the bottom of your heart!

Be still, quiet, and soak in his presence. When you hurt so bad you can’t do anything, put music on to listen to and just listen to the words. Let them flow over you and if you can, sing the words. Praise Him inside yourself until you feel better. There is healing in just being still!

    “It is good to praise the LORD and make music to your name, O Most High,” ‭Psalm‬ ‭92:1‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    “I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving.” ‭‭Psalm‬ ‭69:30‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    “Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.” Psalm‬ ‭95:2‬ ‭NIV‬

    “that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. LORD my God, I will praise you forever.” Psalm‬ ‭30:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    Say out loud: Jesus, I love you and I thank you for healing my body. I come to you giving thanks for my life, for your blood that covers me, and for your love. I thank you for opening the eyes of my heart, so I may receive your healing today. My body is your temple Lord, and I thank you for healing it and making it new again. 

    Praise your way through the pain: The second part of praising your way through the pain is through declaration. In my last post I told you about the book “I Declare” by Joel Osteen. For the declaration part, you MUST say it out loud! When you say it out loud, it makes the enemy hear you loud and clear – and it will come to pass. It will get deep inside your spirit and by speaking it out loud, you are speaking life into your spirit. You begin to believe it, truly believe it, and it will come to life. Joel Osteen also talks about declarations in this book, and how saying them out loud is a way for you to prophesy your future. When you align it with the word, it will happen. To me, it’s also letting God know exactly how much you believe in Him, and how much you trust Him! You are proclaiming victory, and declaring healing using God’s word. 

     Say out loud: Jesus, the doctor says my illness will never get any better, only worse over time. But your word says you have not brought this disease into me. You are the Lord who heals – who already made it possible for me to have healing in my body. It is written

    “He said, “If you listen carefully to the LORD your God and do what is right in his eyes, if you pay attention to his commands and keep all his decrees, I will not bring on you any of the diseases I brought on the Egyptians, for I am the LORD, who heals you.”” ‭‭Exodus‬ ‭15:26‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    Say out loud:  Your word is what I choose to believe! I will believe your word over any word of man!  Thank you for making me worthy, by covering me in Your blood and healing Your holy temple where You reside in me! It is written in Your word: 

    “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;” ‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭6:19‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    Say out loud: Your body was broken so that I may be healed. By Your wounds I am healed! 

    “Our instant healing flowed from his wounding.” 1 Peter 2:24 TPT

    “But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.” ‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭53:5‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    Command the devil to take the pain and illness away and leave your body. My body is God’s temple and there is no room for affliction! The devil has no legal right to inflict your body with pain. Jesus took that right away from him. So command him to stop.

    “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;” ‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭6:19‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    Say out loud: I command the devil to take my pain and leave my body. My body is God’s temple – You have NO legal right to cause havoc with my body and there is no room for affliction here. By the blood of Jesus and in His Name – leave!

    “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”‭‭ John‬ ‭10:10‬ ‭NIV‬

    When we are oblivious to the fact that man (our doctors) are treating us for illness and disease, we do what they tell us to do by putting our faith in them that their treatment plan will allieviate our symptoms and heal us. Hopefully by reading to this point, you’ve also came to realize and know that the doctor’s word does not line up with the word of God, and therefore it’s no longer truth but is a lie. Because the word is the truth! This statement changed my way of thinking. We come to God in prayer, giving thanks, repenting for our sins, and laying our requests out for God. 

    “Hear my prayer, LORD; listen to my cry for mercy.” ‭‭Psalm‬ ‭86:6‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” ‭‭Mark‬ ‭11:24‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” ‭‭Romans‬ ‭12:12‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” ‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:6‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” ‭‭1 John‬ ‭1:9‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    Now that you know the truth in the Word about our healing and illness, we must repent for our sin – that sin of believing a lie in what our doctors tell us. The reality of what they are saying may be true in the world that we live in, but the true reality is – we as Christians are not of this world. We live in a different reality. The reality in this world is that our doctors have their educated opinion. In our spiritual world, our God is the ultimate healer. As believers, it’s our job to believe the Word of God, not the reality of this world and the word of man. 

    “If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.” Romans‬ ‭10:9-10‬ ‭NIV‬‬

    “God is my Fierce Protector and my Provider. I always have more than enough.” Psalm 23-1 TPT

    If you feel pain coming today, just whisper, “Body I command you to align yourself with the Word which says my body is healed in Jesus Name!” Write it down on a notecard, and carry it with you. If you are frustrated, just whisper: “Lord, thank you for taking my pain away and freeing my body from the enemy’s grasp. I believe that You are the ultimate healer, and I trust that you will take care of me. Please take this anxiety from my body and my mind. I am placing all of my worry and frustration on your shoulders so you may carry my burdens. I thank you for everything you’ve done to make me whole again!”

    Final Prayer: Jesus I thank you for being the final authority in my life and for paying the price for my complete and total healing. Your Word is my final authority and when my life doesn’t line up with what your Word says, I choose to believe You and what You have to say! I choose to align myself and my spirit up with what Your Word says is Truth! So help me when I fall short, help me when I am weak, and reveal Yourself to me in these hard times. I truly believe that as I walk this out and begin to believe in the reality of Heaven I will begin my healing. I don’t understand it all and I don’t have too. You know and that is good enough for me. So thank you for releasing healing into my body.


    Are you surviving, or are you THRIVING?

    If you haven’t read Jesus’ parable about the vine and the branches, I encourage you to do so today! I was so inspired by really thinking this through and comparing my life to it. What an amazing and mighty God we serve! I am so blessed! 

    ““I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”

    ‭‭John‬ ‭15:1-8

    Here’s my spin on the words:

    The vine sustains the branches. It provides minerals, nutrients, and everything the branches need in order to not just survive – but to THRIVE. Because of the sustenance from the vine, the branches will flourish and bear fruit and seedlings. The fruit becomes larger as the vine continually provides for it, even through tough wind, water, and harsh weather. Inside the fruit, it in turn provides for the seedlings from the vines nourishment.

    Now replace Jesus with vine, me with branches, and my family as seedlings. 

    Jesus sustains me. He provides everything I need in order to thrive. Because of his sustenance, I will flourish and be blessed, including my family. My faith will grow, from Jesus’s continuous provisions, including all trials that life throws at me. Within me, because of Him, I will be able to provide for my family, so they may also thrive. 

    How blessed are we?! Let that sink in for a moment… 

    In this passage, Jesus also speaks about life and death. The branch needs the vine in order to survive. But if you stray from Jesus, you will fall from the vine, wither, and die. If we think about our faith, and our relationship with God, we must remain near at all times!

    I once heard a saying where if you give sin an inch, it will take a foot. I have experienced this SO many times in my life. I am so thankful for a forgiving and loving Father! He always takes me back! He picks up my withering, dry, and brittle branch – and always fixes it back to the vine – my source of nourishment and sustenance. I always go back to Him, always. I don’t count on it, but I do count on Him being there with his mercy and grace – arms wide open. I know I could leave this life at any day, and as a branch I could easily burn away without Him!

    I am working really hard at changing that. I don’t want to go back to my old ways. I feel like a new person, and my heart as changed. I’m thankful for a merciful and forgiving God, and I pray that I do not stray from Him again. 

    In just a few months, He has become my sustenance in life. His blessing are abundant, more than they ever have been before. I pray that I continue to thrive, and not just survive. I am so thankful for his continual guidance in my life. I am also thankful for my relationship with Him. I pray that He remains in my heart forever, just as I in His. 

    I hope that this post encourages someone out there reading this to keep pushing through!

    As a side note, I picked up a book by Joel Olsteen called “I Declare” on Amazon after my Aunt had sent me excerpts over the past few weeks. It was delivered a few days ago, and I finally was able to sit down and read it today! I became so excited after I read the Introduction and Day 1’s declaration! More to come on those thoughts later…

    Have a blessed week! Happy Monday!

    Monologue vs. Dialogue

    Originally written on 1/25/17:

    This was in my devotional on 1/25/17. It reminded me of my Aunt Vicki’s word focus for the year: relationship. It made me think about how my relationship with God is very monologue and how hard I am seeking him to make it a dialogue. 

    I often talk to God, but i rarely hear from God. For me, prayer has always been a monologue. What if i talk to my husband, but he never talks to me? That’s not a relationship. A relationship has to have conversation – a two way street. Shouldn’t it be just as important to talk to God in prayer, and also listen and allow him to talk to me? I believe it is. In order to do that, I’ve realized I have to want it – want it more than anything else!

    Deuteronomy 4:29, “You will search again for the LORD your God. And if you search for him with all your heart and soul, you will find him” (NLT).

    King David wrote in the book of Psalms, “My God, I want to do what you want” and “What I want most of all and at all times is to honor your laws” (Psalm 40:8 NCV).

    David was passionate in his declaration that what he wanted most of all was to honor God. Being obedient and following God were not options for him. It was the only thing David wanted to do. He used words for seeking God like, “I long for it,” “I crave it,” “I hunger for it,” and “I’m like a dear panting for water.” When you get that desperate, you’re going to hear from God. I’m desperate now – I need you now God! 

    To start this new dialogue, I’ve got to start spending time with God through his word. I prefer it to be a quiet place, with my pen and paper, coloring books, colored pencils, etc. so I can ponder and think about God.

    Matthew 6:6: “Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace” (MSG).

    I need to just be still and listen. Prayerfully put in my requests to God, but also give him a chance to respond. 

    A lesson from a bent, orange colored pencil. 

    Originally written 1/14/17:

    My hands hurt from arthritis today, but that didn’t stop me from writing a few pages in my journal. However it did stop me from writing this, so instead I decided to type it. I feel the guidance to share with all of you, what I have learned today – from a bent, orange colored pencil. 

    At the end of each journal entry as of late, I have been writing a prayer, a summary of my learnings, or even words of encouragement. I always try to choose a color to go with it, not only to make it look pretty or artistic, but also a color that means something. Today, as you can see, I wrote about the things that hold me back from hearing God’s voice – ultimately His “guidance”. Fear, bitterness, and pride were the three things with focus. These are three very strong qualities that required a lot of strength to face. (Who else doesn’t like to see and recognize the negatives in ourselves?!) 

    As I was finishing my entry, I choose the color orange. I read somewhere that the color orange can represent strength – and Lord knows I need a lot of it lately! Before I started coloring, after my prayer and summary was written, I noticed something odd about this orange colored pencil. So I started coloring, and thinking: yes, it was bent – it was still so beautiful on the inside, outside, and on paper. It colored, just as my hand guided it to. It was a magnificent color of orange on the paper, just as I imagined it would be when I selected it to represent my words and feelings today. This bent pencil was worthy of my hand as I colored. I loved this colored pencil, no matter the bent shape. 

    After I finished coloring and thinking, I looked at this pencil, and immediately broke down in tears. This bent orange colored pencil represented me in God’s eyes, just as I saw it to be! I realized that no matter how bent I am, and no matter the shape of my heart, I loved this pencil as much as God loves me – beautiful, worthy, guided by His hands, and loved – so very loved. 

    I hope and pray that this short story of my experience will inspire you, and encourage you! 

    Prayer for Healing…

    Jesus, I thank you for everything you have provided for me. I believe you have both the power and authority to heal my body. I come to you today, to ask for your grace & healing to work in my body. I trust you are powerful, and you are looking for an opportunity to show your power to my body, and to the evil one who causes affliction upon it. 

    I beg of you, please have this sickness leave my body – in Jesus’ name. I break the power of stress & trauma. Please release your peace. I speak over every part of my body and say, “Be whole in Jesus’ name.” Function properly—the way God designed you to function.

    Jesus, heal me today. You paid the price for my healing, so I trust you are at work in me. Holy Spirit, fill every part of me with your presence. Drive out all that is not good, holy, and true. I receive the healing you have for me today, tomorrow, and forever. In Jesus’ name, amen.

    Ditching the pen and paper… for today!

    Today’s reading plan brought me to the below quote from the Bible. How beautiful is it, that this woman had that much faith, that much belief, that God would heal her, just from a touch of his clothes. If only, I could had that much faith. How inspiring?!

    Today is day three. The past two days have been spent in bed, puppy beside me, and the tv on. I couldn’t do much else – walk, shower, get dressed, and no – not even easy to wipe my butt. I spilled my coffee all over the place because I couldn’t hold my cup. (I chuckled a little on the inside – because my cup did runneth over!) But then after the giggle, then the depression set in. I’m not independent like I normally am. I had to rely on my husband to make food for me, kids to hand me something, etc. But through all of that, the depression is the worst. 

    Today I had planned to go to work. When I woke this morning, the soreness and stiffness had set in. After a flare up from psoriatic arthritis, my body just plain hurt. I needed one more day to recuperate. 

    So this morning I get an amazing text from my aunt. She knew I was struggling, I hadn’t been reading the Bible app like before. Funny how at the time she texted me, I was thinking I needed to do some reading today, and possibly even writing. I have found so much joy in bible journaling. It’s been a little over a week since I’ve written anything down and today wasn’t looking so good either. Drawing out verses is fun too. Coloring and pondering also brings me peace and comfort. 

    After a quick chat via text with my aunt (thankful for awesome technology), I thought how cool it would be to do an online blog for the days when writing on traditional paper isn’t really an option. A quick google search later, and here I am…

    Ive always kept notes in my phone. But today I’m going to compile them on here. So I can come back later. I’m not here for likes, or comments, or anything like that. If you’ve stumbled upon this blog by accident, and you continue to come back to read more – then great! If not, that’s okay too. It’s more for my own personal growth and understanding. It’s for my relationship with God, and a healing that I am declaring! 

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