"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3 because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4 Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything." -- James 1:2 (NIV)
I've had people say so many different things about my accident. Some say I was dealt a bad hand. Others say this could never be within God's will, because God only gives "good" gifts. Still others say it was simply a "freak" accident (I've said that a few times myself). I've had so many different opinions offered to me about healing and faith (some in a very aggressive and condescending manner), yet what I've learned from prayer, intense Bible study, and even input from some biblical scholars, is this: God is in control of my life. He knows what he is doing. He loves me. And he is good.
"You are good, and what you do is good; teach me your decrees." -- Psalm 119:68 (NIV)
"The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made." -- Psalm 145:9 (NIV)
This conviction of God's goodness is cemented into my heart and soul, and no matter what happens to me, I still believe it. I believe Romans 8:28 that says regardless of what happens in my life, it can have a good purpose. I believe there are things that we will never understand, and we have to be at peace with that. I also believe there is an enemy in this world that is trying to use our difficult situations to make us hate God. But we have to stay strong. We have to use the word of God and prayer to build our spiritual muscles or our faith will wither away.
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight." -- Proverbs 3:5 (NIV)
"The thief has come to steal, kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full." -- John 10:10 (NIV)
Do I believe that sick and hurting people can be healed? Absolutely. Do I pray about it for myself? Yes I do. I've already seen some of these prayers answered and it inspires me to continue to pray all the more fervently. But there are other prayers that have not been answered and I've learned I have to persevere in my faith and be patient. Much good fruit can be born out of suffering or difficult life circumstances as long as we trust in God.