The word ‘chronic’, when applied to any physical pain or condition, basically implies incurable and can lead someone to lose hope for any return to good health. For an estimated one in five Canadians so affected, there is increasing good news that there is a way to find freedom from what they may feel is a life sentence.
What would it be worth to those who are suffering – and to our health care costs – to have a solution to chronic pain that doesn’t involve a pill or procedure?
A growing number of specialists today are looking beyond opiates – with their negative side effects, including overdose and addiction – to treat chronic pain.
The Association for Psychological Science produced encouraging findings for pain relief in research using a combination of placebos (fake pills) and memory tasks to reduce pain. And, Dr. Sean Mackey, chief of Stanford University’s pain management research, has studies indicating that a loving experience or relationship can reduce pain. He says he now pays attention to the role that emotions may be having on a person’s health.
A wide variety of similar studies offer a promising starting point to resolve painful conditions. While medical research in this field is fairly new, the idea that a change of thinking or feeling can have a positive health effect is not.
The spiritual wisdom of the Bible offers some great examples of individuals who experienced a complete turnaround from chronic disabilities to health and freedom. In one instance, a woman, who had been haemorrhaging for years, had the faith to enter a crowd and reach out to touch the hem of the robe of Jesus. She was instantly healed. In another, a man who had been unable to walk for 38 years was restored to full health when Jesus directed him to stand up and walk.
Although these accounts are often written off these days as ancient “stories” or miracles, such healings do occur today from a change in thinking. And they’re increasingly difficult to ignore given society’s need to find complete and reliable solutions to chronic pain and the enormous health costs that go with it.
Maria had chronic debilitating pain and had been treating it with medication for over a decade. When her attending doctor passed away and her medication was taken off the market, she decided that this extremity was ‘God’s opportunity’ and it might be time to take a new approach to ending, rather than ‘managing’, the pain.
As a student of the Scriptures, she turned to the Bible to find a deeper understanding of how Jesus healed and what, if any, help this might be to her in this age. She says this put her on a path to “… attaining a new understanding of God and His creation.” Maria glimpsed that her real identity was spiritual, perfect and imperishable since God created her. She stopped identifying herself as a merely material person subject to pain when her true heritage was an outcome of Spirit and, thus, was one of health and freedom. Within a short period, the pain vanished, and she now lives a normal, active life.
We should be more open to the possibility that such complete turnarounds are possible to experience even today. A glimpse of the power and perfection of our true spiritual heritage can bring freedom from even the most painful situation. And continuing to grow in spiritual understanding and living offers a life sentence of health and well-being.
You can also read this article in several Metroland Community news editions, such as Simcoe News.