My stroke and what God has taught me
Today I wanted to share with you, my experience with stroke and what I have learnt there from.
When I was sick, I promised God to be a witness to his love (Please refer Mark 5:19 where Jesus, after curing a young man from a bunch of devils, advises him to visit his family and witness).
I wanted to take this opportunity to preach as well as witness. What is the difference? Preach means to proclaim the gospel or good news about Jesus; purpose is to arouse faith in listeners. If you say Jesus is God, he came to save sinners and heal the sick that is preaching. Please also refer Romans 10:15 about the need for preaching as a means of spreading the gospel.
If you say how God has healed you and what you have learned from your experience it is called witnessing. Please refer to Mathew16:16 about the testimony of Peter.
The Samaritan womanís testimony in John 4:39. On hearing the testimony of the Samaritan woman many people believed in Jesus.
I hope to do both today. Hopefully some of you would believe in Jesus as your personal saviour.
Most of you do not know what happened to me. Due to high blood pressure, I had slipped and fell in the bath room on Sunday, Nov. 22 and called 911. I was rushed to Toronto Western Hospital. Dr. Suneil Kalia has operated on my skull and inserted a drain pipe to suck the blood coming out of my head.
What exactly is stroke?
As per the doctor who operated on me, I had suffered a mild stroke, by Godís grace.
A stoke happens when blood supply to the brain is interrupted or reduced. This interruption causes damage to some brain cells which can die. It is difficult to repair or replace these cells.
I was in ICU for almost 15 days and later was shifted to a special ward. The first lesson I had learnt was the value of the nursing profession,
There used to be a Christian nurse from Nigeria by name Tpasaga. In the evening, she used to dress up like an angel. As soon as she came to see me, she used to take my blood pressure and test my blood sugar. As I did not relish Hospital food, I was mostly sick. One night, I was very sick and Tpasaga was stitching a doll or a friendship band on my right hand. At the end of her work she said this is the last stitch. I understood that I was going to die that night. I asked her if I am dead or alive. She smiled at me and said Mr. Rao, we Christians are people of hope. Why do you talk about death while you are still living?.
That is how I got back my faith. I remembered the story of King Hezekiah in Isaiah Ch. 38. I have prayed God to give me life for two days. Slowly I have regained my strength. Let us always pray for all nurses and people working in the healthcare industry.
What else have I learned from this stroke?
As I was researching the bible, I came across Psalm 111:verse 4 which teaches us to see the positives in our problems.
So here is what I have gained from this experience
1. Value of family and friends
2. Value of children
3. Value of grand-children.
I was always proud of myself. I am one of the few from my village to graduate and that too as an Engineer. I have always felt proud of marrying - Vanaja who was not so well educated. While I had acquired secular degrees, Vanaja was a graduate in Bible studies prior to our marriage. As I was not relishing the hospital food she brought me my dinner, break-fast and lunch for the following day. Then I realized how much Vanaja loves me.
Please refer Proverbs 18:14 about a wife being a gift from God.
My eldest daughter became super patient after my sickness. She works in Mississauga from 7 AM to 3.30 PM. She used to come home and drive my wife to the hospital every evening.
You know Josephine my second daughter who used to help me in office but she never took interest in becoming the owner of our family business. From the moment I became sick, she took full charge and maintained my business.
Lastly when I was well, I used to bring work from office and worked in the evenings. When my grand-children visited me I often ran to my bed room to hide from them. Now I look forward to spending time with them.
So my testimony is this; God has raised me from near death and gave me a new direction in life.
I have worked in the bank and in Investors group for a little over 40 years and now I decided to spend the rest of my life His service. Please pray for me.
Nageswar Rao Jillepalli