55: Go by Faith

55: Go by Faith

From Chicken Soup for the Soul: Devotional Stories for Tough Times

Go by Faith

By Phyllis Cochran

“But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.”

~Job 23:10

The autumn leaves were in full bloom when I drove toward the nursing home that October afternoon. I thought about Ruth, the sprightly ninety-one-year-old lady I had befriended. She had no family or visitors, so every Wednesday afternoon I dropped in to see her.

Just as I pulled into the parking lot and turned off the car, the familiar symptoms of an oncoming migraine headache erupted. For years, this ailment had rendered me useless for hours, even an entire day. I recognized the symptoms. The pattern never varied. A numbing sensation in my left arm warned me of an oncoming migraine. Next, tiny silver speckles would float in mid-air as my eyesight gradually blurred, leaving me with one-sided vision followed by an explosive pounding in my right temple.

Leaning back in the parked car, I tried to relax. How would I drive home like this? I’d be unable to see the road clearly. And the hammering in my head would make it unbearable to communicate with Ruth. I prayed, asking God for His help and guidance. Minutes passed, and I tried to remain calm, thinking that if I waited until the blurriness passed, I could drive home.

Then, deep within, a quiet voice seemed to say, “Go. Go by faith.” The simple words with their intense direction twirled around in my mind. What did I have to lose? I decided to obey the inner voice and walk into the nursing home.

Ruth was reclining in a chair and staring into space. “Hello, Ruth. You probably thought I wasn’t coming today,” I said.

She greeted me with open arms. “I knew you’d come,” she said, smoothing her skirt and folding her hands.

While she was talking, I tried to listen, but the blurred vision was progressing. My attention was not on our conversation but on the soon-to-be-thunderous pounding of the migraine.

In the middle of our conversation, I was stirred again by the words, “You are doing my will. I am healing your migraines.” I tried to dismiss the most recent inner voice, but it remained.

Instead of reaching the stage of one-sided vision, my eyesight miraculously cleared. I expected the explosive throbbing to follow as usual. There was none. I drove home free from all symptoms, prepared dinner for my family, and never experienced the slightest sign of the tortuous head pain.

More than twenty years later, I am still free from migraine headaches. That afternoon, the Lord taught me to pray, sit quietly, and listen to His still, small voice within when I am faced with difficult situations. I’ll always be thankful I trusted God’s whisper to go — go by faith.

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