Aug 22, 2013

Lessons From a Veterinarian

I awoke one morning recently with some symptoms that I was afraid could mean kidney failure. I was scared because some of the medications I take for rheumatoid arthritis can do that.

The doctor got me in right away and did a few tests. I remember sitting there in his office before the results came back, talking with God. I was wrestling with myself to get to a point of letting it go into God's hands. He answered me with a word picture about taking our dogs to the vet's.

Snickers (our 12-year-old blind terrier)  is quite stoic and usually unfazed with difficulties that come her way. Doodle (a 5-year-old Maltipoo) gets afraid quite easily. But both of them somehow know that the vet is trying to help them when we go. I believe most animals are like this. No veterinarian would hurt an animal on purpose, but sometimes it is necessary to do a painful procedure to protect the animal from something worse.

The thought God challenged me with is this: Do I have as much faith in God as my dog does in the veterinarian? Do I believe that God takes no pleasure in my suffering and would never allow me to go through something painful unless He was protecting me from something worse? Do I believe that God is at least as good as my veterinarian?

There was no condemnation with these thoughts. Actually it was quite comforting as I mulled it over because it reminded me that God is good and was helping me right then, actually protecting me in that moment, whatever the tests showed.

Soon the doctor came in and told me that it was not my kidneys. It turned out to be a side effect from a medication that they were able to change. I was back to normal in a couple of days. But I continue to carry with me the comfort of what God showed me that day: If a bad thing happens, God will only allow it to protect us from something worse. It is something we would choose for ourselves if we could see what God sees. If you are going through a painful trial, I hope you will be encouraged as well. :)

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