I have had some memory issues over the past few years. Not the typical, “I wish I could remember why I walked into this room,” or “I know there was something else I needed to pick up at the grocery store.”
The problem I’ve had involved forgetting who family members were, confusion over common events or locations, and on occasion, not understanding words in documents. I had even decided that I would probably need to quit my job because nothing made sense. Nothing.
I believed I was developing dementia or even worse, Alzheimer’s, and I had just turned 50. I began having anxiety attacks if I was in a new or unfamiliar location, so eventually I stopped going places by myself. I started carrying around a notebook with vital information within its pages and pictures of family members with their names.
A stabilizing factor in my situation was my husband. If I could talk to him when I felt an “episode” coming on, I could make it home without a full blown anxiety attack or a sense of losing control. However, I was rarely in control.
I visited my doctor, and after much discussion and tests, she came to the conclusion that I was having a type of migraine. My type of migraine. I would have certain symptoms; auras in my eyes or numbness in my hands, but usually never went completely to a headache.
She started me on a migraine preventer and within a week, I knew I was on the road to recovery. I remembered people’s names and understood words in documents. That pill, two times per day, was and is a life-saver for me.
On two occasions, I didn’t take my migraine preventer. The day after not taking this medication, a migraine started with aura and numbness. I have learned that I must never, ever forget or think that I don’t need to take that little pill. Ever.
I sometimes wish there were symptoms like an aura when I forget to study God’s Word or maybe numbness in my hands if I don’t spend prayer time with Him. I would be more inclined to make sure I made an effort toward these important times with God if that were the case.
Even though I don’t have physical symptoms when I neglect God, my spiritual life is in real danger because of my lack of time with Him. I must spend that time with Him on a regular basis in order for my spiritual life to be complete.
Spending time studying God’s Word and prayer time are just two spiritual disciplines that we must regularly have in our daily lives. Scripture clearly conveys the message that we are to be working toward spiritual maturity. Let’s look at a few to determine the importance of these activities.
An example of studying God’s Word can be found in the book of Ezra. He was “well versed in the Law of Moses.” He arrived in Jerusalem from Babylon and he had “devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the Lord, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.” (Ezra 7:1-10)
In 2 Timothy 2:15, Timothy was told to “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” We also should study God’s Word so that we know exactly what His Word says. We then, will be able to be like Timothy and grow spiritually.
Ephesians 6:18 shows us that we are to “pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.”
Here are a few other verses to take note of that lead us to the same conclusion. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” (Philippians 4:6) “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.” (Colossians 4:2) “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.” (James 5:16b)
I love what James says in James 1:22, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” We must put all that we learn into practice, otherwise we will not grow spiritually. That is not what God wants us to be or how He wants us to live our lives. We are to do what His Word says.
My memory has been fully restored. Sometimes it’s even better than I could have imagined. My memory restoration is part of the reason I began writing in earnest. I feel as if God has given me a second chance to share His message with others. I do not plan to simply study His Words any longer. I plan to “do what it says!”
Grace and peace be yours in abundance,