Life is a Choice: Are You Ready to Make It?
Life is a choice and all you have to do is flip the switch! The following story has been adapted from Carlie’s book Miracles Made Easy:
In my mind, I saw a light switch. I knew that if I flipped the switch, the epilepsy I had struggled with since childhood would be gone.
In the middle of a Bible study, the Lord had told me that I could be free from epilepsy in two weeks, if I chose to be. He told me, “Flip the switch.”
The profoundness of this realization hit me like a freight train. If I had been talking, I would have become speechless! Seconds before God spoke this truth to me, I was a sufferer, a victim of life and circumstance who was just trying to survive. Now I understood that the God of the universe had put the power to “choose life” into my hands.
A hundred questions raced through my head: Could it really be that simple? Do I really have a choice to change my circumstances? Can my thoughts and beliefs really change my physical condition?
According to scripture, we do have a choice to make. Life is not automatic. We have to choose God’s blessing over the devil’s curse.
“I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.” – Deuteronomy 30:19 (emphasis added)
Life is meant to be a blessing, but receiving that blessing starts with a choice—our choice.
God put the choice to live before me. Looking around at the ladies in the study group, I could see others opening their eyes, and I knew it was time to go. Fearing I had lost my mind and that others could see it, I said nothing. I knew I would have a lot to think about during the next two weeks.
Was it Real?
I continued to keep the afternoon’s events to myself—even from my husband—because I was certain the account would sound as ridiculous to him as it did to me. I decided that if what I’d experienced really was God speaking and not some strange side effect from one of the dozen or so medications I ingested daily, then I wanted Him to show me it was real. My brain tried very hard to convince me that I had just imagined or dreamt it. But I knew it was of God.
Yet, every time I searched my heart, I found that the thought of being healed filled me with dread.
Do You Really Want to be Well?
I know it sounds silly, but I was afraid of being healed. All my life I had been sick in some way. I hated to admit it, but a part of me needed to be sick. It had become a way of life, a part of my identity, an excuse when I needed something to hide behind. It made me special. I was ashamed and embarrassed at my own neediness, but I didn’t know how to be well. However, I knew my flesh hadn’t dreamt up the notion of being healed.
As the two weeks ticked by, I barely noticed because I was too busy thinking about all the ways in which I had adapted my daily life around the disease of epilepsy. I began to notice the small details of my life: the drug routine, the hospital appointments and admissions, the babysitter that came to sit for me because I could not be left alone with my children. We had even installed locks at the top of each door so I could contain the toddlers in a safe place when I felt a seizure coming on.
I remembered the number of times I woke up in a strange hospital room wondering who I was and where the twigs in my hair had come from. Meeting my baby girl for the first time, I had thought, How do I know that she is mine? (I was mid-seizure during her delivery and unconscious.)
It amazed me to realize that not being able to work or drive or function independently as a healthy adult had messed with my thinking. Epilepsy had begun to identify me, slowly taking larger and larger pieces of my life over. It dictated how I spent my time, where and with whom I could associate. The disease told me how to plan my day, what to eat and when to sleep. It separated me from my family and strained my relationships. Epilepsy had caused financial hardships and made plans for my future. But worse than all of these things, it was sucking away my confidence and self-worth like a disgusting parasite.
The thought of being normal and healthy terrified me. I had no track record of health. It was foreign ground to me and I didn’t know if I could make the turn in my mind to embrace it. Epilepsy had given me a crutch, a way out when I didn’t want to do something. But if I was normal then I could work a job and drive a car. I would have nothing left to make me special. And that was the bottom of the barrel, an ugly truth in my heart that I didn’t even know was there—epilepsy made me feel special.
Once all these dirty little secrets surfaced within me, I just could not squeeze them all back into the jar they came from. Now that I knew they were there, I couldn’t “unknow” them, and I didn’t really want to. My heart was changing. Ever so gently, the Holy Spirit was convicting me of the dark insecurities of my heart so He could show me my salvation.
“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” – John 10:10
This verse revolutionized my thought life. For the first time with the Holy Spirit’s help, I saw that the enemy came to kill, steal, and destroy me physically, emotionally, and spiritually. But Jesus came to give me life and show me how to live it. Even though it was uncomfortable for a while, the Holy Spirit guided me into truth so He could bring healing, peace, love, joy, and freedom to my life (John 16:13).
I began to consider what life would be like without epilepsy. Pictures slid through my mind of what it would be like to plan and follow my dreams, to have enough energy for the day, to walk down the stairs and know that I would make it to the bottom without having a seizure. I dreamt of what life would look like to not fall asleep without warning or rock myself into a fetal position when the side effects of my disease cramped my muscles. Imagining the freedom it would be to walk alone, to drive, to explore, to not have to explain this condition or take medication or stay in the hospital or even go to the doctor anymore, I realized that my dream was huge!
You Are a Child of God
But even bigger than my dream of life without epilepsy was the miracle that no one ever saw. The biggest part of my healing was the revelation that I was special simply because I had become a child of God. I didn’t need to be afraid; God was with me. He would always be my hiding place:
“1He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. 2I will say of the Lord, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress; my God, in Him I will trust.’ 3Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the perilous pestilence… 16′With long life I will satisfy him, and show him My salvation.'” – Psalms 91:1-3, 16
This verse showed me that if put my trust in the Lord, He would deliver me from epilepsy. I was finally ready to give the disease that had taken over my life to the Lord. I knew I was no longer powerless in this situation: it was my decision to accept or reject the gift God had for me. That decision would determine whether or not I continued to allow the enemy to steal from my life. I was ready to flip the switch. I knew that the moment I flipped the switch in my mind, epilepsy would be gone.
Flip the Switch
Being rather preoccupied, I had forgotten that two weeks was the timeframe God gave me in prayer, which would be up the next day! On the way to my women’s Bible study that Friday, I wondered if everything that I had heard, felt, and experienced of God had really happened. I had never heard of anyone talking with God like I had. I’d never heard of anyone being healed or seen anyone be healed. What if I was crazy? This was probably heresy; I was going to die, struck with lightening for stupidity or blasphemy. Well at least I haven’t spoken out my thoughts or told anyone…But what if, my heart cried, it really was God? If it really is God, then someone will offer to pray for me, I thought. If not, then I will forgot about it all.
The ladies gathered as usual with the little kids playing in the hallway, quietly dismantling the house. Occasionally the conversation broke to allow a mom to apply an ice pack to newly slapped skin or attend to a pungent bottom. But nothing out of the ordinary happened, and suddenly, it was time to go. Rounding up my tribe and heading out the front door, one of the ladies stopped and turned towards me. “I need to pray for you,” she said.
I don’t remember what she prayed, but I know it was quick—a micro prayer that didn’t add an “if it be Thy will” to its end. Immediately I felt heat throughout my body, and in my mind I flipped the switch of epilepsy off. Nothing on the outside of me changed, but I knew it was done.
That was 13 years ago, and I have never had a seizure since!
Excerpt from Miracles Made Easy