A few months ago, my dear friend gave me a book called, When God Winks, written by Squire Rushnell. If nothing else, a name like Squire should make you want to buy his book. The book is a collection of real-life “coincidences” – or, as one dictionary entry puts it: “a mysterious event that is not a coincidence, but of divine origin”. In the author’s note at the beginning of the book, he acknowledges that Godwinks are signs of hope. There are times in life when we just need a Godwink.
Over the past 12 months, my entire life has been a Godwink. Eventually, it will all unfold in the sequel to Masquerade. I have actually laughed (and cried) to my closest friends that my life has truly been a made-for-TV movie.
The past 6 weeks of my life, in particular, have been a whirlwind, to put it mildly. I will spare some details so that he can share himself, but my dear friend and business partner (Which was a Godwink in and of itself) had a bad reaction to the immunotherapy drug he was taking for cancer, which had a tremendous affect on his cognitive abilities until the doctors were able to figure out the cause. During the weeks of confusion, well-intentioned (for the most part) people were trying to inform the doctors of his symptoms, habits, medical issues, etc, to try to paint the clearest picture to help the doctors the best they could to determine what was wrong. I went to the hospital every single day for a week straight to be present when each of the doctors – and he had an entire team of them – came in to discuss his condition. He went through a battery of tests from CT scans, MRI’s, to spinal taps, etc. There were several times throughout the process where the doctors seemed to make a conclusion of his condition based on verbal feedback from family members despite medical evidence they had to the contrary. I fought tirelessly to try to help the doctors see they needed to keep looking for the root of the problem – so much so that family members were upset. During this time, several close to the situation, who claimed to be Christians, became extremely ugly and attacked my character. In a time when I felt it was important to unify in Christ, and come together to be his support, there were those so fueled by jealousy and bitterness that they sought to destroy, and they made it perfectly clear they weren’t interested in unification. I was particularly despondent because I knew they were Christians.
I truly reached a point where I could no longer be his advocate. Those of you who know me well know I don’t give up easily. I’d like to think of myself as person pretty capable of getting things done, but I found myself in a situation that I could not control at all… his health was 100% out of my control. I HAD to allow God to be the advocate for his health, and for the ugly family circumstances that truly broke my heart. I HAD to release it completely to God and trust that God WOULD be his advocate (and mine!) Oh, I knew God COULD be his/my advocate, I just didn’t know if He WOULD. I sort of felt as though I wasn’t worthy for God to work miracles.
It was in this same week that I decided to return to a Bible Study Ap that was recommended to me over a year ago. I opened the Ap and it returned to where I left off – in the book of Gensis, studying Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. The first couple of days of the study were filled with lessons that Abram/Abraham learned as God was testing his faith – and I learned that he failed some of those tests! Not only that, but God was patient with him as he learned from those failures, and gave him more tests, not to give up on him, but to allow him to grow and learn to trust God completely. Returning to this study was a Godwink for me. In a time when I felt I was failing tests God was giving me, I needed to know that He is continuing to develop me into what He needs me to be for His purpose.
With no other choice, I found myself praying differently… truly praying without ceasing that God Himself would advocate on my friend’s behalf, that He would lead the doctors to the right conclusion.. truly praying that God would bring healing where healing was needed, in ALL circumstances, and believe me, it’s needed in A LOT of places! I found myself having to rely completely on God… and sometimes that’s just the place He needs us to be…
In the afternoon of the day I reached out to my friends to let them know I was REALLY losing the battle, (Bridge notes…. losing the battle), my friend called me and asked me to come and talk to him “about the next ten years”. His voice sounded so weak that I wondered if he’d even make then next 10 days. I hadn’t planned to visit, but made arrangements to be able to and headed straight for the hospital. I was visiting with him when one of his doctors came in and described what he thought was going on – I remember asking him directly if he thought it could be stopped/reversed and he said he was hopeful. Over the next few days, the doctor team seemed to align on the cause of his medical issues – the very drug that he was taking to treat his cancer. They put him on a strong steroid to counter-act, and his cognitive skills began to improve. He had to go to a rehabilitation facility to learn how to walk again as he’d been bed-ridden for over a month.
Yesterday, he learned that he will be coming home tomorrow! By the grace of God, my friend has been given a new lease on life. Even better than that, he knows completely, without a doubt, that it was God who touched him and healed him, advocated for him when he couldn’t, and has dedicated his life to serving the One True God. He has told me, and everyone else he can, that he just wants to be a disciple of God and do what God directs him to do. God has given him opportunities to share his story all through his rehabilitation center, and, in doing so, he is allowing himself to be a Godwink to someone else who needs it.
I suspect his road might get a bit bumpy, especially because the devil will be unhappy about his zeal, but one thing the past 6 weeks have taught me (again) is that being in the center of God’s will is the best place we could ever be. I messaged him this morning to say I’d be praying that God fills him with an unquenchable thirst for God’s Word and that He reveals the next step of His purpose in his life. I’m truly excited to see God work.
There are really a lot of details I’m leaving out – and Godwink’s throughout the past 6 weeks. In due time, they will be shared. In the meantime, I am enjoying reading the book, When God Winks, and suspect that I will continue to read others in the series. There are still unresolved plots in my story, and not everything in my story has been a fairy-tale with a happy ending, but I can truly see that God’s hand is over my friend and over me – and over you – and over every situation which we face – being out advocate even when we don’t know it.
Be blessed today, my friends!