What have you learned about praying while you are yourself ill? Temporarily, or in a chronic way? How has your prayer transfigured itself in response to new awarenesses about your body–of its capacity for not working right, or for pain or discomfort? What have you learned about prayer during the times of uncertainty about knowing the cause of those not-good changes?
I am about to go out of town for a week, and wanted to share this time more questions than reflections of my own this time.
One thing I’ve discovered about praying while suffering in some way in the body: I feel grounded by the knowledge of a woman my age, from my hometown, who struggles with a spinal tumor and with perpetual feeling of pins and needles in her legs, and the knowledge that she chose to live with this–and its potential regrowth–instead of seeking to have the entire tumor removed and being unable to walk. I feel as if she’s gone the way a little ahead of me, this woman I’ve known since I was four (not a friend, just part of my texture of my hometown years).
I’ve noticed too that a certain sort of closeness to God can open up more readily when you’re in the raw of pain, discomfort, or uncertainty.
Sometimes, at least.
I welcome hearing what others have learned about–or in–praying while ill.