When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze—Isaiah 43:2
In 2006, my husband and I left behind everything we knew–our family, our home, our jobs and our friends. We were on a faith journey that we believed was crucial to Ronnie’s healing. For most of his life, he suffered with respiratory issues–severe sinus infections, lung infections and bronchitis. These attacks would be addressed with continuous rounds of antibiotics that would lessen the symptoms but never cure the underlying cause.
In 2003, Ronnie had an infection so elusive to discovery, his doctor feared that he had a brain tumor. A CT Scan indicated that the infection was deeply imbedded in his sinus cavities. His doctor encouraged us to move to a dry climate.
Desperate for a cure, we began to research areas of the country that were both warm and dry. We determined the only place that would meet those requirements was Arizona or Nevada. We didn’t particularly like Nevada and the only thing we knew about Arizona was that my daughter’s best friend’s parents had relocated there several years ago. Armed with very little knowledge of the state, we planned our initial trip to the desert in June 2004!
Coming out of the Phoenix airport for the first time, the heat hit us with the force of a ton of bricks! So this was dry heat?!!! It felt like being thrown in a 500 degree oven! Amazingly, Ronnie’s sinuses opened up and he could breathe again! I was overjoyed that Ronnie didn’t have a headache and we could really enjoy our vacation. We actually began to make a plan to retire to AZ in 5 years!
Unfortunately, each time we returned to Milwaukee, so did the infections!
In February 2006, Ronnie was hit with a sinus infection that lingered into March with swollen gums and a broken tooth. His doctor prescribed Cipro, the anti-anthrax antibiotic and Levaquin, one of the strongest antibiotics available.
Despite these aggressive antibiotics, Ronnie’s health continued to fail. I focused on strengthening my faith– praying, fasting and, at the same time, completing a year of ministerial training. Ronnie continued to take antibiotics; I continued to learn about faith and believing God for the impossible.
One eventful night around 2:00 am, I found Ronnie writhing in pain on the floor from another excruciating sinus headache. When I asked him what was wrong, he said, through tears, “I don’t want to die here”. My response came straight from the Holy Spirit–“You shall not die but live to declare the Glory of God–we’re moving to Arizona!
I thank God for my Milwaukee church and pastors: Christian Faith Fellowship Church, Bishop Darrell Hines and Pastor Pamela Hines. They taught me the power of the Word of God and that I could use the Word to overcome life’s circumstances. It was now time to fully exercise that power to save my husband’s life! I needed to raise my faith to a level that I had not experienced!
I meditated on Abraham and God’s command to him in Genesis 12:1to get out of his country and from his kinfolks and “go to a land that I will show you”. I also meditated on Jesus’ words to the disciples in Mark 11:23-24that “whoever says to this mountain, be removed and be cast into the sea, and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says…therefore whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them and you will have them”. These scriptures became my foundation to believe God for what seemed impossible at that time. I continued to pray and confess God’s Word in Ephesians 1:16-23 over both of us—day and night! These verses describe the exceeding power of God toward us who believe, and 3:14-20“For this reason I bow my knees to the Father…”. Through this spiritual warfare, I experienced the power of God’s Word and the “knowing” that God has a plan and purpose for each of our lives and He has already supplied all of our needs!
The latest infection finally abated in April and we left for Phoenix the first week of May to find a new home. It was time to start our journey towards our destiny. It was time to leave Milwaukee for good!
*Excerpts taken from our E-book, “My Testimony: Our Journey To Healing”