I started getting some sporadic shooting pain in my kidneys this year and was certain I had kidney stones. One night I woke up screaming in pain, so the next morning I rushed myself to the ER (for the second time with this same issue). They did a CT scan, checked my blood, and everything came back pretty much normal. That’s great, except I didn’t get any good answers. The doctor said there was a cyst and also some scaring on my kidney from the time I had surgery as a baby. There were also some legions on my spleen but nothing that caused the doctor concern.
“Just follow up with your primary, and come back if the pain continues. But I don’t see anything too concerning,” he told me.
I was already set up to meet with a Naturopathic doctor in a couple weeks so I figured I’d wait and talk to her.
The Naturopathic doctor spent 2 hours with me going over all my symptoms, educating me on the miraculous ways the body heals itself, what foods I should be avoiding and eating, the connection between our minds, our emotions, and our health, and then giving me a protocol to give my body the right conditions to heal.
Interestingly enough her very first prescription was drinking more water and getting more sleep. (She also had some supplements for me to take and books to read.) What she recommended seemed too simple.
More water, more sleep.
I didn’t realize how little water I had been drinking during the day until I started this protocol. (Note: Side effects include a strong urge to urinate more frequently).
But, the benefits have far out-weighed the side-effects. I hadn’t been feeling any major shooting pain in my kidney for a whole week! Then, yesterday, I got kinda lazy and for some reason didn’t feel like drinking as much water.
What do you know – shooting pain in my kidney! (I also had more gluten than I had been eating during the week so that might have played a factor as well.)
Nevertheless, I began to wonder: Could it be that life is more simple than we make it out to be?
Could it be that many of the answers to life’s big questions are found right in the world around us? Could it be that God knew the kinds of things we would face in our sin-infested world and then graciously create the remedies we would need to heal? Take the Aloe plant for example. Isn’t it amazing that it grows in places where there is more intense sunlight!?
How often do we pray for things (healing just being one example) and feel like God’s answer is going to be too complicated to figure out? Many times I’ve realized after I pray, that the answer I’m looking for is already there right in front of me. Like God is saying, “I already knew you would face this. Open your eyes. What you need is already there.”
But sometimes, even when we do see the answer right there, we feel like it can’t be THAT easy. There must be something else we need to do or discover.
But isn’t that such a reflection of our sin nature? It’s the same sin that has been around for ages. It says God isn’t enough. Jesus’s sacrifice isn’t enough. Surely it must be more difficult than this. There must be something else I need to do to have forgiveness of sins or healing. Often times the simple answer is right there but we just don’t want to obey it.
John 3:14 say, “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up…”
In Moses’ day, God’s people, the Israelite, had all contracted a disease. They asked God what to do and God told Moses to put a snake on his staff and raise it up. The people were to look at the snake and they would be healed. This seemed too simple (and ridiculous) to some, so they didn’t listen, and they died. Others, in child-like faith, obeyed God’s command, and they lived.
Jesus said that just like the snake was held up in the wilderness so that the Israelites could live, He too would be held up on the cross so that all who look to Him would also live. The cross does not only provide for our physical healing. It does so much more. The next verse says this: John 3:15 “…that everyone who believes may have eternal life in Him.”
It’s that simple.
I know that not every answer is as simple as “Drink more water!” or “Get more sleep!.” But maybe sometimes it is. And I don’t mean to minimize long journeys of suffering. God uses those long seasons to do great things. But I do know that our culture and humanity is more bent toward over-complicating things and having a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps and get ‘er done” mentality. Perhaps God gives simple answers to big problems simply to keep us humble and remind us that He is God. We need Him. And with Him nothing is impossible.
Is there a problem you’ve been facing? A prayer you’ve been praying? Maybe ask the Lord to show you if the answer is already there. And may you have the eyes to see it, the child-like faith to receive it, and the will to obey it – even if the answer is as simple as “Drink more water.”