“Lord, please take this pain away from him,” was all I could manage. This was our second time in the Emergency Room in just over a week. My husband had woken with severe chest pains around midnight the previous Saturday and our ER visit then resulted in a three-day hospital stay. They did an extremely thorough work-up and after days of testing declared his heart healthy and sent him home with no restrictions. We thought he was on the mend — he felt well, and seemed to be getting back to his normal chipper self.
Now here we were again, with him in severe pain. Although we felt pretty certain it wasn’t a heart attack, we couldn’t take any chances, and with as much pain as he was in, there was no way we could have gotten it under control at home. As he lay there suffering, there was absolutely nothing I could do for him but pray.
I say I couldn’t do anything but pray, but the reality is that prayer is what got us through these last few weeks. It’s the only thing that has kept me from falling apart, both physically and emotionally. It’s the one thing that has made the difference between me being able to handle the stress and greatly increased activity level and melting into a puddle of tears on the floor.
Because it makes such a difference in my life, I made prayer a key component of my HOPE plan for learning to thrive with fibromyalgia. This time in the hospital with my husband was a vivid reminder of just how important prayer is and why I included it in my care plan.
5 Reasons Prayer Is A Key Component Of My Fibromyalgia Care Plan
- Prayer is powerful! I have seen many amazing answers to prayer over the years, most recently in this situation with my husband. Praying allows us to communicate directly with God, and He always answers. He may not always answer the way we would like, and sometimes His answer is “no,” but when we look back on the situations where He didn’t answer as we wanted or answered “no” we’re able to see the good that came from it.
- It helps me get through difficult circumstances. That night in the hospital, I prayed for strength as I sat with my hubby. My stomach felt like I had swallowed razor blades, sitting was excruciating, and my legs hurt so badly I could hardly stand. Once they decided to keep him overnight, I ended up going home for a few hours’ rest. When I returned the next morning I felt even worse than I had the night before. At one point I needed to go to the hospital cafeteria, which was a pretty good hike, even taking the “shortcut.” I wasn’t sure I could even make it without passing out because I was extremely lightheaded, but my husband and I both needed to eat, so I put on my big-girl pants, prayed God would help me make it there, and headed down those long vacant hallways. Without having the Lord to lean on, I never would have attempted it.
- It keeps me grounded. Praying allows me to communicate with my Creator, which helps me to draw on His strength when I’m at my wits’ end. It’s easy for anxious thoughts to arise when things seem to all be going wrong, but I’m able to keep my mind clear and not let that anxiety take over when I stay focused on God and His power rather my situation. Being able to pray rather than worry allows me to settle down and just focus on the things that I do have control over and let God handle the things I can’t control.
- It gives me hope for the future. Knowing that God is in control helps me to have hope for the future regardless of my circumstances. I know that whatever happens, God is in control, and that He uses everything, even those painful things, for our benefit.
- Prayer helps me keep my attitude straight. I’m a huge believer in the difference a positive attitude makes in dealing with any adverse situations in life, and my prayer life is what helps me maintain that positive attitude and sense of optimism.
Like a healthy diet, optimism, and exercise, prayer is crucial in my ability to thrive in spite of the pain and fatigue of fibromyalgia.
As I mentioned earlier, during these last few weeks it really has kept me strong and allowed me to do what I needed to for my husband. It also sustained me as I dealt with the very real possibility that I could lose the love of my life. I’m happy to say it looks like they pinpointed the issue (pericarditis) and with treatment, my hubby is slowly getting better.
What helps you the most when you face those hard times in life? Please share!