Instead, I realized some pretty important things in that Sunday school class, which I'll try to (briefly) summarize here.
The main thing I was reminded of is "Trust what you know and not what you feel." It's been something I've gone back to a lot in these past 3 years, that even if I don't feel God, He's there. Easier said then done, right?
I was reminded of the time back in July, before I got a diagnosis but had a sense of what was coming. I remember feeling such a peace. Looking back now, I realized that that peace isn't a reflection on the lack of faith I have now (Lack of faith compared to then) but God's presence, Him taking me by the hand and saying, "Ok, Alisha, this is going to be tough, and it's going to hurt like crazy. But this is the right thing, this is where I want you to be. I've got you, I'm not letting go of you." Also, today something was said about in the Bible, God promising never to leave us. I've grown up in a christian home, I've gone to church all my life, I've known that promise, and yet why did it seem so new to me when I heard it today?
One passage I've come back to a lot over the past little while is the one where the Israelites wander around in the desert. I think we, or at least I, tend to focus on the cool stuff Moses did to rescue them from Pharaoh, and when Joshua and everybody walked around the city and the walls fell down. But it's the time in between I didn't really look at before... or at least I didn't until I was stuck in a wilderness of my own.
When the Israelites left Egypt and escaped Pharaoh, I'm pretty sure they thought they were free. God was going to bring them to the promise land sometime in the next little bit, and life was going to be good. Instead they wandered around in the wilderness, for 40 years. They suffered, a lot. One thing that stood out to me is that the Israelites were God's chosen people. And yet they ended up suffering big time. And then, when God finally decides to step in and take them to the promise land, they find out that their enemies live there. I can only imagine what they must be thinking then. I can actually imagine it's pretty close to what I've been thinking this last month.
"Ok, God, I did what you asked. I've wandered around in the desert for years, I've suffered greatly, I've done my time, you can come rescue me now."
What is it that makes us think that, after we've suffered greatly, everything should just be smooth sailing from here on out, that God should just hand us everything on a silver platter.
I was undiagnosed for around 3 years, my own form of walking in the wilderness. Maybe I expected too much when I thought that once the diagnosis came, life would be smooth sailing.
I think I'm a lot like the Israelites in that way, that I've wandered around in the wilderness for long enough, that once I get delivered things shoudl be great.
But things aren't great. The Israelites encountered enemies in their land, and it turns out getting diagnosed isn't just a free ride, it hurts, A LOT.
I keep saying, "Ok, God, where are you? Why haven't you rescued me yet? Why am I still suffering so much?"
And then I hear Him whisper, "I'm right here, waiting until you trust what you know and not what you feel. I've never left you, not when you wandered in the wilderness and not now. I never promised life would be easy, but I promised you would never be alone. Just wait, the best is yet to come."