Dealing With Illness
Moshe Ben-Chaim
Reader: I am on a the bboard on the net . It is a support group for people who have Cushing's Syndrome. This terrible thing makes the body to produce to much of its normal steroid. Then the body begins to attack it self. Beautiful women begin to get weaken and sick with all kinds of horrible strange maladies. Their hair is lost, bone damage, skin becomes all broken down and thin, hurtful pain all over their bodies! As A. Jew, what can you please share with me about the promises of God about healing Isa.65:24 "Before they call I will answer;while they are still speaking I will hear." We need a miracle to be healthy. As God parted the Red Sea,we also need to know that He will make us whole again! The same miracles that we read about in past of times. Thank you, Please answer soon!
Mesora: I am sorry it took so long to respond...How are you feeling?
You should understand that while God has performed and can perform miracles, we do not look to them as a method of dealing with our problems. Yes, we must pray, but we must also seek the finest care, doctors, diet and cover all bases to insure our health. Our patriarch Jacob prayed to God, prepared a bribe and readied for battle when his brother Esav was chasing him to kill him. He covered all the bases, and did not simply wait for miracles.
It is essential that one live the correct life according to the Torah. By doing so, we are recognized by God all the more as deservant of His intervention. Additionally, seeking ideas in Torah cause us to focus on what is truly important, allowing other issues to subside from the center of our focus. Thereby, we diminish the importance and expected happiness we previously sought from those areas. Health is extremely important, but focusing in on God's creation and wisdom actually helps us de-emphasize our own egocentricity, while we also realize what is amazing about the world. A Rabbi once told a woman stricken with Parkinson's , "we live in our mind". Meaning, although she is bound to a wheelchair, this does not prevent her from enjoying wisdom, appreciation of nature and other pleasures not requiring physical exertion. Our perception and happiness are in our minds. She recently wrote me a letter thanking me for some very small favor I did, but how it changed her stay and made her happy. The recognition shown to her elevated her spirits, and the personal one on one made her completely forget about her ailments. This happiness she experienced displayed just how much more important friendship is than health. Laughter together made her realize that she could deal well even with Parkinson's, provided she had her priorities correct, - that there is more to life. How she is coping with her ailment is truly inspirational.
That means maybe we can too!

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