Do you ever just want to give up the fight?
I mean, you´ve tried every flipping treatment under the full moon to beat this nasty illness, only to have fatigue and fifty million symptoms prevail over your not- so-spiffy strategies.
Not to mention the gargantuan investment of time and money you´ve made in those treatments. Why should you bother?
Do you feel a sense of relief at the idea of giving up? At tossing all of your treatments to the wind, because you don´t know what to do anymore?
Good for you! Take a break. Seriously, it might not be such a bad thing. Have you ever thought about relinquishing the outcome of your illness to a higher power? I don´t mean passively doing nothing to treat your Lyme, but not worrying and fretting over when and how you will be healed, believing that all will be done at the right time?
Mostly, I don´t understand the concept of surrender. My mantra has usually been, ¨Try harder!¨ Instead of, “Trust more!” “Strive, because surrender is scary!”
Today as I was praying, however, I had a vision come to mind. In it, Jesus is carrying my tired, ravished body. I am limp and relaxed, as my limbs renounce their strength to his. I find a refuge in letting go and allowing myself to be carried by my savior; comfort in believing that maybe I don´t need to try so hard–in thinking that it might be okay not to ask myself today how I´m going to make a living or how I´m going to treat the next annoying symptom. Just resting, resigned but paradoxically, relieved that I can let it all go.
As Jesus carries me, I am weak, more so than in “real” life. He’s holding me on the worst of my Lyme days. My limbs ache, my chest is filled with fatigue, my joints crack and lethargy weighs upon me, but my spirit observes all this from a distance.
And suddenly, I am not that body; I have transcended it.
As I rise above my physical body, I realize that I don´t need to suffer, because even if my own efforts fail, my god can yet renew every cell that cries with the pain of disease and trauma; that wails with the grief of this world and that begs to be filled with His light and love. The possibility sits there, as a great unrealized potential within my spirit.
Was healing meant to be so hard? I don´t know. As I mentioned, most often I don´t understand surrender. Surrender feels like passivity.
In reality, however, it is anything but passive, because trust and letting go are perhaps the most active things we as Lyme disease sufferers can do to promote our healing. Why? When we strive and are discouraged by our lack of progress, our cells resonate with this pain and effort, which keeps us captive in the prison of infection. Our immune system is left without power whenever we bemoan our lack of healing and all the travesties of disease.
Believing in a higher power, in a god that is sovereign and who is actively directing our paths, relieves us of the need to ¨do it all right.¨It keeps us from believing that unless we stumble across the right remedy, we won´t be healed. It encourages us, when we believe that we must carry the weight of the world upon our shoulders, as we take hope in a god who will instead take the weight of our world upon his. It shows us that indeed, healing can be found in the quiet places of trust and surrender, instead of the anxious place of striving, where survival depends upon us, instead of God.