A testimony of God’s Faithfulness
and the Truthfulness of His Word
My life is a testimony of God’s faithfulness and the integrity of His word. I live with my wife Judy and two children Caroline (13) and Dennis (3 ½) in Bangalore, India. To make a living, I work for as an HR Manager for a Government owned Power Company. I consider my secular job as a part-time assignment, because I believe that my full time assignment is to proclaim the goodness of God, His faithfulness and His love & compassion..
I have come to know this great God more intimately through various struggles and trials that I have gone through in my life. In 1995, I developed a serious knee problem after being hit with a cricket ball. Though doctors did their best to treat me, my condition only became worse by the day. In 2003, one of the eminent orthopedic doctors of Bangalore suggested that I undergo an arthroscopy to diagnose the exact cause of the excruciating pain I was having. After the procedure, the doctor did not find anything unusual with my knee and declared me normal. But not only did the pain become unbearable, but my knee joint started to become stiff and bent which in medical parlance is called flexion deformity. Since this doctor appeared to be clueless, I went to another reputed doctor in Bangalore. He for some strange reasons referred me to a pain and palliative doctor who diagnosed my case as a case of “Sympathetic Nerve Syndrome”, which required me to undergo a nerve block. But as a part of the process, when he administered a spinal anesthetic to me, I developed a severe headache due to leak of the spinal fluid. My condition became so miserable that for a week I was forced to lie flat on the bed because the moment I attempted to get up, shooting pain in my head would force me down to the bed. Now, not only did I have to contend with severe knee pain, but also with this shooting pain in the head. In God’s utmost mercy, we were forced to abort the plan for nerve block, courtesy complications. We were only to realize later as to how much disastrous it would have been had we gone ahead with this procedure. Pain is an outward symptom of an inner problem and if it were to be taken out of the way, my case would have been that of a latent volcano with its magma eating into the inner most parts of the earth and suddenly bursting forth from a weak spot in the surface causing untold misery to the unsuspecting. I do believe that as God’s children, He is in control of all situations in our life and beyond a point He wouldn’t allow certain things to happen in our life.
During the course of hospitalization for this purpose, I was seen by a Rheumatologist who suggested the possibility of arthritis. This prompted me to consult a Rheumatologist after my discharge. He opined that my case appears to be that of arthritis and immediately put me on immunosuppressant drugs which are normally dispensed for such cases. Thus, began a 7 month-period of mindless experiments at the hands of various rheumatologists. My condition improved in the beginning only to become worse as the treatment progressed. I was also given steroid injections on the knees which virtually made me into a cripple.
Having exhausted all the medical options available, I was left with no hope and I had more or less resigned to a life of pain and disability. During that period of 6 months I forgot what it meant to sleep and rest. My condition became so miserable that I could not walk or do any work both in the house and at work. My future and especially that of my family started to look very dark and bleak to me. My mind was overwhelmed by all kinds of negative and depressing thoughts. Though I knew Jesus Christ personally from my teens, I did not understand the real meaning of His being my redeemer and healer, and my ever present help in trouble.
But when I slowly began to lean on God and His Word, I began to experience an inner comfort and assurance which the world had hitherto failed to give me. In the midst of hopelessness, God’s word began to stir in me a new level of faith and confidence. Though the doctors and all the technology available to them failed to diagnose my case, I knew that the Word of God would bring to light what is hidden for it says in Hebrew 4:12-“…the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates into the dividing of the soul and spirit, the joints and the marrows….”. I realized that I can depend on Lord Jesus Christ to not only pull me out of this situation but he would carry me along because He sustains all things through His Word.(Hebrew 1:3) I also understood the irrefutability and certainty of God’s Word and His promises. Bible says that “Heaven and earth will pass away but my Word will never pass away.”(Mathew 24:35). God watches over His Word to see that it is fulfilled (Jeremiah 1:12). His Word is eternal and settled in the Heavens (Psalms 119:89). All this and many more scriptures convinced me that I can trust in His Word to deliver me from this crisis for all His promises are ‘yes’ and ‘amen’ in Christ. (2 Cor 1:20).
Though I continued to face severe pain and an uncertain future, things started to happen in the spiritual realm which was yet to manifest in physical realm. God’s Word and His promises began to instill in me a new hope, confidence and strength. I could confess that in quietness and confidence is my strength, (Isaiah 30:15). I began to boldly declare Psalm 16: 8-11 –
“..I have set the Lord always before me,
Because He is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;
My body also will rest secure,
Because you will not abandon me to the grave,
nor will you let your holy one see decay.
You have made known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
By August 2005 doctors began to suspect either malignancy or another dangerous condition called “villondular synovitis” for which there was actually no treatment except repeated knee surgeries. As a last ditch effort, the doctor wanted to perform an arthroscopy once again to do a biopsy of the bone and tissues surrounding my knees. I knew that the doctors wanted to do this to only confirm their suspicion. The severity and the intensity of pain only seemed to confirm their fears. Even the MRI scan leading to this procedure was done with great difficulty because the involuntary spasms of the muscles would shake the pictures. Since I could not keep my leg still for more than a minute they tried to take the MRI by giving me a local anesthesia. When that failed to calm me down, they even administered general anesthesia. Though I slept through the whole period, my knee kept on shivering, triggered by the spasms of the muscles in distress. When the doctors told me that there was no way that they could move ahead without doing this MRI, I cried out to the Lord to give me strength. I mustered courage once again and went to the MRI room committing myself into God’s hands and confessing that “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength”. (Philippians 4:13). God gave me supernatural strength to somehow sit through the procedure which lasted for about 30 minutes (without the aid of any calming drugs). After the MRI results came out, the doctor confirmed the need to do an arthroscopy to investigate further.
So here I was admitted to the hospital once again. All along I was a bit unsure as to whether I should really be undergoing all this medical treatment, when God had already promised to deliver and heal me. Shouldn’t I be trusting in Him and wait upon Him to do this miracle in His time instead of rushing and taking things in my own hands? More so when His word was confirmed to me that- “…. those who wait on the Lord, will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” (Isaiah 40:31). All kinds of doubts started to run through my mind because one thing I was sure of- that my God is going to heal me and I didn’t want any man to take credit of what God has done in His mercy. That was the time when this word came to me as a cloak of assurance-
“…See, I have refined you, though not as silver;
I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.
For my own sake, for my own sake, I do this.
How can I let myself be defamed?
I will not yield my glory to another.” Isaiah 48:10-11
Having been assured that no man would take the glory for my impending healing and deliverance, I prepared myself for another round of arthroscopy. Just before I was to be taken to the operation theatre, one local pastor and a friend came to pray for me. While we were praying, the Holy Spirit came powerfully in the room and I could sense the healing hand of God descending on me. God showed this pastor a vision wherein I was standing in the starting block of a racing track about to take-off. The moment the whistle blew and I took off, something white and fluffy resembling snow flakes came out of my knees and I started to run with total freedom. It was as if something that had bound me in chains had broken off and I was now released to run in full steam. I knew that very moment that God had healed me. The moment pastor finished describing the vision to me; the stretcher came to take me to the operation theatre. In the normal circumstances, this procedure was to take 45 minutes to 1 hour. But by the time I was brought back to the room 6 hours had passed and when I came back to my senses, I asked those around me including the doctor who had operated upon me how the operation went and why it had taken so long. Then the doctor explained that as they cut open my knees, they were startled to see a thick layer of tissues, white in color, covering my entire knee joint. It was so thick and constricting that my knee structures like bones and ligaments were not visible. The doctors immediately decided to administer general anesthesia to me and for the next 3-4 hours they virtually scraped out this entire white substance from my knee joint like how one would scrape the flesh out of a coconut. What the doctor said next startled me. He said, “Stanley, we do not know what it is but we have removed a huge amount of muck from your knees- it was something like snow. Let’s now await the biopsy results.” Though I could sense a foreboding fear in the voice of the doctor, I knew that my God had already healed me and there was nothing to fear anymore. When the biopsy results came a couple of days later, it was confirmed as an infection of the soft tissues of the joint and not cancer or “villondular synovitis” which was suspected. The doctor later confessed that he had reasons to suspect something seriously bad because this substance that they removed was so abnormally glistening white-like snow he repeated. I praised God for revealing everything to us even before the surgeon’s knife could be put and confirming to us that He has not yielded His glory to the doctor. God bless the doctors- but with or without doctors and medical sciences, our God is the Jehovah Rapha – the healer. Though I had to use crutches and a stick for the next 4 months, God has now delivered me completely from my sickness and disability and these days I am actively engaged in competitive sports and I represent my company in Table Tennis competitions.
The healing touch of God is so different from what the medical sciences offer. While the medical sciences may or may not help overcome a particular disease, one touch from the healing hand of Lord Jesus, would not only heal the disease we are praying for but in the process root out all the other sicknesses nagging the body. He not only administers healing but imparts health as a complete package. True to the promise given in Jeremiah 30:17 that “…He will restore health unto us.” He has not only delivered me from my knee problem but has delivered me from a host of other problems like insomnia, indigestion and fits. He has pulled me out a pit of despair and hopelessness to a life of fulfillment and joy. Around this time, God gave me a word of knowledge- “But unto you that fear my name shall the sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth and grow up as calves of the stall.” Malachi 4:2. And this has literally come true in my life as I have found a new zest and passion to live and serve the Lord and I am sure God is leading me into something bigger in His service.
Even before my healing, God had demonstrated his love and compassion when He delivered both my children from death. This happened in the year 2003 when my condition was also pretty bad. My daughter Caroline who was 10 yrs old then, suddenly became pale and yellow and very weak and lethargic. For a couple days we could not notice it for she was a big and robust girl. But when she started vomiting, we rushed her to the doctor. The doctor immediately suspected jaundice. But the pediatric doctor had few doubts for which she asked us to get a blood test done. When the test report came in 30 minutes, we were startled to find that her hemoglobin had come down to 4.5 gms, the normal being in the range of 11-14 gms. Since, this was a dangerously low level and life threatening; we rushed her to another hospital which had the facility of transfusion of compact blood cells. By the time we reached that hospital in about 45 minutes, my daughter almost collapsed in my arms. She was immediately rushed to the ICU for blood transfusion and when they checked her blood they found that her hemoglobin had further come down to 3.5 gms. It was clear that a massive hemolitis (destruction of red blood cells) was taking place in her body but there was no visible blood loss from any part of her body. After infusion of 2 units of compact blood cells, her hemoglobin marginally increased to 6.5 gms, but by evening it again started to fall. The doctor carried out a series of investigations to find out the cause of the problem but they could find nothing to put their fingers to. Something very serious was happening in my child’s body which the doctor appeared to be clueless. The doctor got in touch with eminent consultants in the city and outside and even abroad but the cause of the problem eluded them all. 4 days passed but investigations did not yield any answers and my daughter was surviving only on the blood transfusion she was receiving. I could sense the desperation on the face of the doctor whenever he would have to face me. I understood that my child’s condition was very serious and the treatment had hit a wall and there were no answers with the doctors. I must admit that never in my life had I felt so weak and hopeless. Sitting outside the ICU alone in a hospital bench (Judy was compelled to be at home with our new born son Dennis) I began to shed tears and poured my heart out to the Lord in desperation and prayed for His mercy upon my child. I confessed- “Lord you are my refuge and my strength an ever present help in trouble. Therefore I will not fear, though the earth give away, though its waters roar and foam…..I will put my trust in You for you are my fortress.”(Refer Psalm 46). I began to draw strength in the presence of the Lord and the feeling of hopelessness slowly gave way to a build-up of faith in me that my God is going to perform a miracle because nothing is impossible for my God. And praise God, miracle is indeed what happened when after 6 days the doctor told us that her hemoglobin seems to have suddenly stabilized around 6 gms. The doctor suggested that we could consider taking her home because even otherwise no treatment was being given to her in the hospital. We took her home, even though she was quite weak, we had the assurance that God had already delivered her from this deadly snare. After discharge from the hospital, we consulted an eminent hematologist in an attempt to find out the cause of the problem but he also gave up after 2 months of investigations. Till today we do not know the cause of this deadly fall in her hemoglobin count but one thing we are sure of is that –“…God saves us from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence.” (Psalm 91:3) When he removes something from our life, it is blotted out completely and no trace of it would be left. Within 2-3 weeks, my daughter’s hemoglobin jumped to 15 gms, which is more than the normal requirement and she is back to her normal chirpy ways.
Just after 2 months of my daughter’s discharge from the hospital another disaster came near our tent- this time to devour our infant son Dennis. My daughter who was carrying 6 month old Dennis in her arms, tripped and fell flat on the floor with Dennis pressed under the weight of her body. The full impact of the fall came upon Dennis. When I picked up Dennis, his head and body just went limp and he stopped breathing. Things happened so suddenly that for a moment I didn’t realize the seriousness of the situation. But I quickly realized that life had gone out of Dennis and he was dead in my arms. Judy and the entire neighborhood (which had gathered by then) began to scream and panic. . But I could sense the power of the Holy Spirit coming upon me. Instead of rushing to the hospital, something prompted me to go out on the road, away from the commotion in the room, with my child in my arms. I began to pace up and down on the road confessing God’s Word into my child. I began to confess that God is the giver and sustainer of all life. The Spirit of God has made us and the breath of the Almighty gives us life. (Job 33:4). For the next ten minutes I continued to claim the breath of God into my son’s lifeless body and all my confessions were made in Jesus’ name. Bible says that Jesus Christ is our High Priest who sits at the right hand of the Father interceding day and night for us. That is the reason we can approach the throne of God with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. (Hebrew 4:16). And mercy indeed we received from the throne of grace. After about ten minutes, the body of my son began to shiver violently and he let out a big cry. I could feel the breath coming back into his body all over again. It was a marvelous feeling to experience the miracle working power of Lord Jesus Christ and His life-giving Word in action. We went to the doctor to get Dennis examined for any damages but she could not find anything wrong with him. I praise God for once again demonstrating His love towards us.
If I were to sum up the events in my life, I would say that my life is a testimony to the faithfulness of God and the integrity of His Word. God’s word is unchangeable and it is a rock on which can stand at all times. Circumstances may come and go, but God’s Word will not change. Bible says that “Many are the afflictions of the righteous; but the Lord delivers him out of them all.” (Psalm 34:19) “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him and have been called according to His purpose.” (Roman 8:28) Trials and struggles come in our life to mould us to reach the destiny to which God has called us. I would like to end by quoting a portion of Psalm 91:
If you make the Most High your dwelling-even the Lord, who is my refuge- then no harm will befall you, no disaster will come near your tent. For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread upon the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent. “Because he loves me”, says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. With long life will I satisfy him and show him my salvation.” (Vs 9-16)
If you are in need or in some difficulty I would be happy to join with you in prayers.
I can be contacted at- [email protected] or 91-9449599014.