Recently I had a run-in with influenza or Covid or some other random horrible virus. It was definitely the sickest I have ever been.

Symptoms came on pretty suddenly: a cough, fever, body aches, shortness of breath. Fever and chills, extreme headache, fatigue, and then on top of it, on days two and three, nausea and vomiting kicked in and for a little over 48 hours, I couldn’t hold down a single sip of water.

By day four, I was delirious, exhausted, in extreme discomfort from the body aches, and dehydrated. I had started to be able to keep some sips of water down, but it wasn’t enough to catch up from two days of vomiting, my fever, and how hard my body was working just to try to breathe. Did I mention that I was also 11-weeks pregnant at the time?

I was miserable, to say the least. I looked like death. I felt like death.

I should have probably been in the hospital. There’s an entire backstory in regards to my healthcare during this time, but that’s not what I want to talk about today.

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I want to tell you how, even though over the past few years I would say my faith has strengthened exponentially, even through some hard times, this sickness brought me to my knees, but in the worst way.

I cried and begged and pleaded with God to take away my symptoms. For almost four days I did this. And then, I suddenly decided, with clarity, that I don’t believe in God anymore. I told my husband that maybe, just maybe I still believed, but I didn’t believe He was good all the time anymore.

I told him he could keep praying, but I was done.

Also on that fourth day, because my husband got so worried about how much trouble I was having breathing and because I told him I could not ride in the car an hour to the emergency room, he called one of our closest friends who is a nurse. He asked her when he needed to literally pick me up and drive me to the ER.

Somewhere in their conversation, she mentioned she had a bag of IV fluids and could come give it to me. So at 10 p.m. on the fourth night, she came over with gloves, masks, and fluids for me.

I felt like a new person, at least temporarily. Unfortunately, my fever didn’t break for another two days, and then whatever I had turned into pneumonia a few days later.

BUT—I felt better than I had in four days.

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That night when I laid my head on my pillow, I, out of habit, prayed and said, “Thank you God for sending my friend.”

My eyes popped open. I KNEW immediately. God sent her to me. I thought He had completely abandoned me. I had never felt so alone. And then, just like that, I KNEW. I knew he hadn’t abandoned me. HE sent her to me. HE did that.

Of course.

I had felt alone. I had felt abandoned. And of course, God had actually been by my side the whole time.

The Lord says it several times in the Bible that he “will never leave us or forsake us.” I never want to repeat the experience of being that sick. But I did learn firsthand a lesson I will never forget.

“Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the Lord your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6).

So I encourage you, even if you feel like you are at the bottom of a pit and can’t even see a possible way out, He is still there with you. Scripture says so . . . and I KNOW so.

There are probably more lessons in this story I have yet to figure out.

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But friends, isn’t it amazing to know that when God says He never leaves us, it is a literal statement that we can believe without question?

So whatever you’re going through, whatever you’re waiting on—don’t give up. Keep asking. Keep seeking answers. Keep knocking. Your prayers are being heard.

Michaela Gasseling

I am a Christian mom, farmwife, La Leche League Leader, and health and fitness enthusiast. My passions are helping people to get to know Jesus, and encouraging others that having a good relationship with food and movement is worth learning! I am also a small-town Nebraska girl, a runner, coffee-addict, a certified PiYo Live group fitness instructor, an empowerer, and a rural influencer. I blog about our crazy life at http://cowgirlbootsandrunningshoes.com/.  I have a new title of SAHM and all my listed roles fill MY cup. The loves of my life—along with my farmer—are our four kids. I am learning to navigate life on a farm and at home after moving to my husband’s family’s place after 10 years of living in the city. Prayers and coffee accepted.