Paralyzing fear gripped me. My head knew that I didn’t even know if I had reason to worry, but my heart refused to listen.
When my “numbers” were high on the glaucoma test my optometrist had performed, he referred me to a specialist. I honestly didn’t recall what exactly glaucoma was – I just knew that I’ve always hated the test they do for it. All weekend I had been good and hadn’t looked it up on the internet. Somehow when I do that, my symptoms always equal cancer or some other incurable disease.
Monday morning at 9 a.m. I dutifully called to make an appointment. The conversation went something like this.
“I can get you an appointment in two months.”
“Is that the soonest you can get me in?”
“Well, it looks like I might have something in a month and a half. Do you happen to have your numbers?”
I quoted the numbers from the referral slip to her. She put me on hold for a minute and then returned.
“Can you come in next week?”
That was when I couldn’t resist any longer. Why the rush to get me in once she heard the results? Up came the search window and my fingers typed in G-L-A-U-C-O-M-A. I opened the first result and began to read. So far so good. Nothing too scary. Then I went to page two and that was where I saw IT.
“If left untreated, it can cause blindness in two years.”
I had actually been noticing some strange things with my vision for a while – at least a year and a half – but hadn’t done anything about it. What if I had waited too long? Was I going blind?
And that was when I froze. I don’t think I had ever known fear like this before. I could hardly move. I could hardly think. I began to cry out to the Lord. I think the prayers started out as a simple “Help!”
I was at work. I work at a Christian ministry and was surrounded by friends. But the terror I was experiencing kept me from being able to speak. To just ask someone to pray for me. I knew if I tried I would burst out into uncontrollable tears.
I began to pull up Scripture. There were two that the Lord brought to my mind and I printed them out and taped them to my monitor.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:5
Throughout the day, any time I began to panic, I would read the verses and I would pray. And pray. And pray. And though nothing in my circumstances had changed, I was filled with peace. By the time my husband picked me up from work I was able to talk about it.
In not allowing the fear to control me, in surrendering my fear to God and trusting Him, I was able to overcome.
So the end of the story is that I saw the specialist and though he said he wanted to keep a watch on me, my pressures weren’t enough to be concerned or to start me on drops. But he warned me to not neglect to come for my follow-up visits because if untreated, I could go blind in twenty years.
Deep Calling Deep (Psalm #3)
Series: Psalms #3
Published by McPherson Publishing
Publication Date September 1, 2018
Genres: Biblical Fiction, Historical Fiction, Christian Fiction
Setting: Roman Empire - 32BC - 1461 AD Rome
Written for: Adults
Praetorian Prefect Sextus Burris has spent his life fighting for the glory of Rome, but that glory has lost its shine. As both his health and his career crumble, he is drawn toward the seemingly inexhaustible peace of one of his Jewish prisoners, the Apostle Paul.
The moment Timothy hears his mentor and surrogate father Paul has been arrested, he rushes to Rome. Under the looming threat of execution, Timothy struggles to make sense of what is happening. Finally, an unexpected crisis requires him to reexamine everything, and places their hope for Paul’s freedom on the shoulders of Praetorian Prefect Sextus Burris.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. This gift did not influence my opinion or review.
Also in this series: By the Waters of Babylon
Rome at the time of Nero was a hotbed of intrigue, treachery, corruption, and violence. For the Christians, it was worse. Timos was torn between succumbing to his great fear and surrendering His cares to Christ.
Based on a prominent historical figure, Praetorian Prefect Sextus Burrus, Deep Calling Deep examines the life of a man close to Emperor Nero and ponders what his life might have been like and how he might have reacted to exposure to the prisoner, Paul.
Timothy, nicknamed Timos, was the other main character in the story. I loved the way the author showed him as fallible, a young man who experienced fears and doubts in the face of persecution. Hmm. Maybe a little bit like I can be at times. If you are at all like me, then perhaps you have always assumed that because he was so close to Paul, he was a strong man who never wavered. Yet if that was the case, then Paul wouldn’t have charged him to pursue faith or to fight the good fight of the faith and take hold of eternal life in his first letter to him.
The story was immersed in Scripture and gave glimpses of what it might have looked like for Paul to be under house arrest. And what life might have been like for the early Christians there in Rome. It gave hope and showed how to have peace in the midst of trials.
I was tempted to look up some of the Romans from the book while I was reading to see what happened to them, but restrained myself. I’m glad I did because it meant that I was surprised at the ending. I loved reading the author’s notes at the end and learning a few more details about Sextus.