Prepare to be Delivered

by | Feb 22, 2011 | Old Magazine Articles

Prepare to be DeliveredGod’s love is able to deliver you from the pit of despair. But will you receive this transforming love and be rescued?


He is one of my favorite patients. His appointments are usually made on Saturdays, and when I come into the exam room, he reminds me that I’m a pastor’s wife with four kids so I’ll understand when he adds, “I won’t take up too much of your time.” He brings a newspaper to read while he waits then gives it to my staff when his visit is over. 

He is HIV-positive.

It was long before I became his doctor that he contracted the virus. He was married to a woman who, in time past, had used drugs intravenously, and she was the source of his exposure. As I got to know him, he revealed bits and pieces of who he was as a person, beyond the facts that go into the medical record. 

It’s funny how men and women are different. My female patients are uninhibited when it comes to expressing their emotions. I’m given intimate details of their personal lives, usually on their first visit and within minutes of introducing myself. But men are different. What they share beyond the nuts and bolts of their medical condition does not flow freely. Those facets of their lives are gathered piecemeal, and over the course of time.

As I learned his story, I couldn’t help but stand in awe of God’s transforming love for this man. When his wife became ill, they weren’t prepared to hear that the diagnosis was HIV. Learning she had infected him was the second wave of that tsunami. At the time of her diagnosis, her illness was more advanced than his, and her health declined rapidly. He was devastated by her death, and even neglected his own health during the months that followed. 

Then, unexpectedly and tragically, his son died. And while he thought he had hit rock bottom when his wife passed away, he sunk even deeper into the depths of despair with the death of his son. 

When I discovered the details of this part of his life, I was reminded of Psalm 40 when David said: “I waited patiently for the Lord; and He inclined to me, and heard my cry. He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my steps” (vv. 1-2, NKJV). 

My patient’s testimony, like David’s, bears witness to the power of God’s love, which is able to deliver us from the pit of despair. But the decision rests with us as to whether we will receive His transforming love. That decision is sealed through preparing our hearts. 

Had my patient not positioned himself to receive God’s love, he would have sunk deeper into the pit, which could have overwhelmed him even to the point of suicide. But instead, he prepared his heart for deliverance. And now, he is doing remarkably well with a viral load that is undetectable. 

I believe God’s love has preserved him—body, mind and spirit. So what did he do to position himself to receive this love? It required that he: 

Eliminate Self-Pity 

While God’s love is able to pull us out of a pit, self-pity keeps us anchored to the bottom. My patient faced adversity on many fronts, and adversity brings with it the temptation to slip into self-pity. This is especially true with chronic illness, with which we tend to assume a “woe is me” persona. The psalmist said: “I will lift up my eyes to the hills—from whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord who made heaven and earth” (Ps. 121:1-2). 

If self-pity has us completely focused on our problems, then it becomes difficult for us to see the source of our help. Adversity is real, but there is a fine line between accepting the reality of affliction, and becoming totally consumed by it. David neither denied nor minimized his hardships. But they did not take his focus off the Lord. Rather, at the height of his pit experience he said, “Let all those who seek You rejoice and be glad in You; let such as love Your salvation say continually, ‘The Lord be magnified!’” (Ps. 40:16). 

Remove Regret

Many chronic diseases are preventable and are the result of lifestyle choices related to diet, exercise, tobacco and alcohol, substance abuse or sexual exposure. And when disease (or any challenge for that matter) could have been prevented, we are prone to being overtaken with regret. Even though my patient acquired HIV in the state of holy matrimony, there was nevertheless the potential for him to look back and wonder what might have been, what could have been—what if, what if, what if. It’s a deadly germ indeed that causes “if only-itis.” My patient shielded his heart from catching it, and this positioned him to receive God’s transforming love.

Consider Others First

The Bible says: “In lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others” (Phil. 2:3-4). One sure way to experience God’s transforming love is to consider the needs of others ahead of your own. When my patient was in the depths of despair, he turned his attention to his daughters, and made a promise to himself to always place their needs above his own. And this pledge to them changed his life for the better. 

Our best example of this truth is found in the life of Jesus. God’s power was manifested through Christ on Calvary when He sacrificed Himself for the needs of others. And God’s power is seen in our own lives when we put the needs of others before our own. 

My patient could have easily met his end in the pit of affliction. But he chose another option requiring him to reject self-pity, resist regret and reach out to meet the needs of others. In doing so, he positioned himself to receive a miraculous manifestation of God’s love. And his life was forever transformed. 

Kara Davis, M.D., practices medicine at the Christian Community Health Center in the Chicago suburb of South Holland, emphasizing the Bible’s perspective on health and wellness. Author of the recently released Spiritual Secrets to Weight Loss, she feels indebted to the patient mentioned here for allowing her to share his story.


Find other keys to a healthy and whole life at davis.charismamag.com

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

How Divine Wrestling Changes Our Identity

How Divine Wrestling Changes Our Identity

All of us at some point will hit a place of getting the wind knocked out of us. We all experience unexpected detours and times when there seems to be no way out. But there is One who lives in us, the Lord Jesus Christ, who gives us the strength to overcome obstacles....

Spirit-Filled Pastor: How Does God Lead Us Today?

Spirit-Filled Pastor: How Does God Lead Us Today?

Whether it is the Spirit leading or forbidding in the book of Acts, or the Spirit leading throughout Christian history, it’s clear that the leading of the Spirit is important. In the Old Testament, it appears that the Spirit of God could be withdrawn completely from...

Joyce Meyer: Keys to Winning Your Race in Life

Joyce Meyer: Keys to Winning Your Race in Life

Everyone has a race to run. That just means we all have a life to live. The apostle Paul says in Hebrews 12:1 (NIV), “Therefore...let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for...

Prophetic Word: The Lord Says, ‘I Am the Consuming Fire’

Prophetic Word: The Lord Says, ‘I Am the Consuming Fire’

God says that during this season, He is turning up the heat, finding the gold and bringing His refining fire. Job makes a powerful statement of faith as he says of the Lord, "When he has tried me, I shall come out as gold." God knew Job's heart and Job knew the heart...

What Is ‘The One Thing’ God Wants From You?

What Is ‘The One Thing’ God Wants From You?

In 1971, I was invited to spend one month in Singapore at a new institute that had been started by John Haggai. It was still in the formative stages then—a place where Asian church leaders would be trained and challenged to witness for Christ. Today, more than 40...

37 Prayers for the Suffering Persecuted Church

37 Prayers for the Suffering Persecuted Church

It was a Pentecost bloodbath and most Christians never heard about it. More than 50 Christians were killed in one of the deadliest terror attacks on Nigerians this year. Scores of gunmen rushed in to kill Christians in the midst of worship. All told, over 360 million...

RECENT ARTICLES

Prophecy: A Window of Time Has Opened for Believers to Preach the Truth

I was rejoicing and praising God on Friday, June 24, 2022, for the overturning of Roe v. Wade, knowing that an ungodly decree was overturned and one national curse was broken. I heard by the Holy...
The Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: The People I Saw in Hell

The Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: The People I Saw in Hell

In 1998, God gave me a life-changing vision of hell. I receive many questions about my experience from people all over the world, but one question I'm often asked is, "Who did you see in hell?" There are others who say they've had an experience like mine, and they...

The United States: Birthed in Prophetic Symbolism

The United States: Birthed in Prophetic Symbolism

One of the most amazing facts about the Founding Fathers of our nation is this: The one referred to as the "voice" of the revolution (John Adams) and the one referred to as the "pen" of the revolution (Thomas Jefferson) both died on the same day—July 4, 1826—exactly...

Why Did God Give ‘This’ to Me?

Why Did God Give ‘This’ to Me?

It’s a question I frequently hear. It’s one I’ve asked. And maybe it’s one you’ve asked, too. The question is, “God, why did You give this to me?” This can be any number of issues, from emotional or psychological struggles to symptoms or sicknesses, disabilities or...

No Evil Can Stop What God Has Planned

No Evil Can Stop What God Has Planned

I sense it. And I perceive a growing number of people in massive proportions sense the increasing momentum of power and might worldwide. Something is on the horizon—something more eerie and ominous than what the people of the world have ever before experienced. Even...

Pin It on Pinterest