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ISBN 978-0-692-07469-5

51295>

9 780692 074695


Life, Lyme & the Lord Copyright © 2018 Gail E. Topham All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods, without the prior written permission of the copyright holder. Sripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible® (NASB), Copyright© 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission. www.Lockman.org Till Armageddon, by Billy Graham, ©1981 Billy Graham, used by permission, all rights reserved. By John Piper, ©Desiring God Foundation Source: desiringGod.org Cover design by Jim L. Friesen Text design and layout by Jenny Topham Flaming Library of Congress Control Number: 2018904092 International Standard Book Number: 978-0-692-07469-5 Printed in the United States of America by Mennonite Press, Inc., Newton, Kansas. www.MennonitePress.com


DEDICATION This book is dedicated to my husband Phil, for his faithfulness in caring for me in sickness and in health, and for not giving up on me when the road seemed to be so rocky and uncertain. The journey has been much more bearable because he took my hand and walked beside me. To my children and grandchildren, for their encouragement, support, hugs, love and concern. Words cannot adequately express my love and gratitude. To all of my family and dear friends, for their many prayers on my behalf. I am blessed and deeply grateful.


Table of Contents Introduction.......................................................................1 The Great Outdoors..........................................................3 The Journey Begins...........................................................7 Drawing Near..................................................................11 The Lord is My Refuge...................................................13 Heartprints.......................................................................15 Impatience........................................................................19 Listening to His Voice....................................................21 In Sickness and in Health..............................................23 Sufficient Grace...............................................................25 Heartstrings.....................................................................27 From Bad to Worse.........................................................29 Moving Mountains.........................................................31 The Lord Will Provide....................................................33 Answered Prayers...........................................................35 A New Hope....................................................................37 Lyme Disease...................................................................41 Blessings...........................................................................45 Pressing On......................................................................49 Soul Searching.................................................................51 Burdened..........................................................................53 Facing Reality..................................................................55 My Rock and My Redeemer..........................................57 Pain Overload..................................................................59 Trusting God....................................................................61 In His Strength.................................................................63 God Will Meet Our Needs.............................................65 Immanuel.........................................................................67 God's Pruning..................................................................69


Brokenhearted.................................................................71 Weak and Wounded.......................................................73 Amazing Grace................................................................75 Battle Fatigue...................................................................77 A New Direction.............................................................81 Faith-building Memories...............................................83 The Power of Prayer.......................................................87 A Hope and a Future......................................................89 Resources..........................................................................91


INTRODUCTION We often take life for granted, and then we are suddenly left in disbelief as life begins to change unexpectedly. One day you are blessed with good health and a full, productive life. And then it all begins to change as multiple health issues begin to destroy your health, slowly taking away that full, productive life you had been blessed to enjoy. Over time you have been to numerous doctors and specialists, been diagnosed with and treated unsuccessfully for various illnesses or diseases. Yet your health continues to decline, and you are at a total loss as to what is wrong, why you don't improve, and where to go next for help and answers. Many finally give up hope of ever getting a correct diagnosis, or ever regaining their health. With overwhelming pain, my strength nearly depleted, and no diagnosis in sight, I began to feel a hopelessness that my health would ever be restored. I continually cried out to the Lord for mercy and strength, putting my trust in His sovereign plan for my life and His perfect leading. Sometimes the path is difficult, and the wait is so long, but it is reassuring to know that God is writing a story of faith through my life, and this long and weary path I walk will end one day in the arms of my precious Lord and Savior. Ultimately, my hope rests in His love for me and in His saving grace. This is my personal testimony about life's struggles and God's faithfulness in the midst of a chronic illness. It is my sincerest prayer that my testimony will encourage you to "run with endurance the race that is set before you." "Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith." Hebrews 12:1-2a 1

Life, Lyme & The Lord  

Life is a journey, and sometimes God’s providence takes us down a long and difficult path of pain and suffering, and we find ourselves in a...

Life, Lyme & The Lord  

Life is a journey, and sometimes God’s providence takes us down a long and difficult path of pain and suffering, and we find ourselves in a...