Please Continue to Pray for My Adverse Health

By David J. Stewart | March 2011

I thank God for the opportunity to do the work He has given me to do. This is an honor and a privilege to serve the Lord and help others. I have never considered my ministry a burden, and never will. It is really the Lord's ministry and I always am reminded of that. I've never made a penny and never will. This is a labor of love. This is God's work, which the Holy Spirit has put into my heart to do. Philippines 2:13, “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.”

Albeit, I am suffering physically in much pain all the time, and that's why I've slowed up a bit in writing articles. I'm not going anywhere by God's grace. I'm just taking life a day at a time, as God gives it. I'm just overwhelmed lately because of the nerve damage in my neck and the unavailability of help—puffy arms, tingling in my limbs, nerve burning, neck pain, muscle tension, and arms and legs feeling like they're partially asleep. I sincerely ask for your prayers, that God will continue to bless this ministry, and help me to cope with my ongoing health ailments.

I get overwhelmed if I think about the future, thinking that I'll have to live with this the rest of my life; but it helps if I just focus on the moment and today only. As Proverb 27:1 reminds us, we don't know what a day may bring forth. Even so, come, Lord Jesus. I'm not suicidal, but I don't want to live anymore, and haven't since 2004 when this pain started. Philippians 1:21, “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” All remedies have been exhausted. My only hope is the Lord's return and a new glorified body at the Rapture.

I've had much pain lately in my right arm, extending over the shoulder into my arm and thumb. The pain is also bad at times running over my right knee down into my toe. I've tried to take the drug Lyrica to cope with nerve pain and tingling, but it adversely reacts with the Oxycontin; so I can't take Lyrica. There's just nothing any doctor has been able to do to help make me better. My pain is worse and I'm out of medical options at this point.

I've already had 2 neck surgeries, which haven't helped. The 2nd surgery in 2010 messed me up even worse than before I had any surgery. The pain is horrible in my neck. It's like a constant agonizing toothache that never goes away.

I've lost 35 lbs. of weight over the past 3-months, eating apples, oatmeal, and drinking V-8 quite a bit. I've gone from 207 lbs. in December of 2010 down to 172 lbs now in March of 2011. I was hoping it might help reduce my pain, but it has done the opposite, causing increased sharp razorblade-like cutting pain in my arms and legs.

As I type, my neck is hurting unbearably and there is absolutely nothing I can do about it, nor has anyone been able to help me, but some tried. It is overwhelming to suffer without remedy. People just don't understand, nor do most people care at all. I just wish life would hurry up and finish, so my pain and suffering will end. If you're not suffering in debilitating pain like I am, then you cannot judge me, because you don't know. You really don't. Surviving with pain is worse than death.

The pain is bad enough, and then there's the opiate addiction. Withdrawal symptoms are absolutely miserable. Kicking Dilaudid and Morphine Sulfate was VERY difficult. I suffered much. Now I'm on Oxycontin and will be for the rest of my life apart from a miracle of God.

I cannot put into words the suffering I've been through, and continue to endure. I can relate to Abram in the Bible, who felt the shadow of horror over his soul. Genesis 15:12, “And when the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell upon Abram; and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him.” I awake often, feeling sharp pain running down my legs. Lately my entire right arm goes numb while sleeping so that I cannot lay on my right side at all. I cannot sleep without 10 mg. of Ambien nightly. My life's Bible verse has now become Job 17:1, “My breath is corrupt, my days are extinct, the graves are ready for me.”

The medication is a blessing for me. My body is functional; but I suffer shooting pain, tingling, puffiness, muscle tension, burning, and toothache-like constant pain in my neck all the time. People can't see any of this, and so I have to explain these things to nearly everyone I have contact with. And many people couldn't care less.

I take 120 mg. of Oxycontin daily (equal to 12 Percocet 10/325's a day) to endure the pain. It takes the edge off, but doesn't take away the horrible aching, dull, agonizing, constant pain where the bone is located in back of my neck. I've had this every single day since March of 2004 without relief. I am not complaining; I'm just hurting very much. I have no one to help carry my burden except the Lord, and He is my only hope. The pain never goes away. This is why I've posted articles dated 2-weeks out in my recent section, because I am overwhelmed with my pain and suffering. Oftentimes I have to just take my prescription meds and chill out. It's the only thing I can do to cope, i.e., just lay down and wait for the Oxycontin to take the edge off and rest.

Imagine the worse toothache you've ever had, but where the bone is located in back of your neck. And you have that pain 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, without relief. And that pain radiates into your facial area into your gums, nose, eyes and face. How could you have a life? You cannot see nerve damage. People cannot see the puffy sensation in my arms, nor the sharp razorblade pain radiating into my arms and legs, nor the constant toothache-like neck pain and muscle tension, et cetera. I am not living; but enduring. I am not feeling sorry for myself; I am feeling suffering for myself, and there's a BIG difference.

I recently went to renew my driver's license and the gentleman saw that I was having difficulty smiling for the photo. He kept asking me if I wanted to redo it and I said yes, because I wanted a smiling picture on my license. He was a nice guy. I explained to him that I have a damaged spinal cord in my neck. My facial nerves were hurting much that morning, and I felt like someone was sawing across the bone in my neck. People cannot see damaged nerves, muscle tension, and radiating pain in my limbs. So they often judge me wrongly.

My arms feel like air bags, with debilitating toothache-like pain in my neck which radiates into my facial area. I have razorblade-like pain radiating down into my arms and legs, especially over the right shoulder and knee, into the thumb and toe. I have tried to get medical help, but no medical procedure has so far helped. I've been through 2 major ACDF neck surgeries. On both occasions I hoped not to wake up from surgery, praying for the Lord to take me home. Neither surgery has helped. In fact, the 2nd surgery in April of 2010 has made me much worse, intensifying the tingling, pain, and puffiness in my limbs.

When I awoke from the 2nd surgery, I felt horrible pain in my neck and the tight plastic brace around my neck. Tears were running down the side of my head in the recovery room. I said to the nurse, “I am very lonely.” She replied, “We'll, I've never heard that one before” and she walked out of the room leaving me alone. I prayed to God and thought about Matthew 28:20... “Lo, I am with thee alway, even unto the end of the world.” People can be so cruel and heartless. We are living in perilous times (2nd Timothy 3:1-5). God sees me through.

God is a good God. I try to smile everywhere I go, I sincerely do, because I have a good God Who loves me. My pain often gets the best of me before I even realize it, and people think I'm upset. I'm just in horrible pain. I apologize to people all the time if I seem upset or look unhappy. I tell people that I am in constant pain, and most people do understand. I love people and choose to focus on the needs of others instead of myself. I'll let God sort out the mean people. We should think on the needs of others. This is what the Lord taught (Philippians 2:4-5). That's what this ministry is all about... helping OTHERS for the Lord. God has a purpose for all my suffering. It certainly keeps me humble and on my knees praying.

I suffer alone every day of my life, trusting God to see me through to another day. Unfortunately I just can't handle e-mails anymore, and I apologize to those who want to communicate with me. We'll have plenty of time up in Heaven, and I believe that time will be very soon. God's grace is the only answer (Hebrews 4:15-16). I have endured the Devil afflicting me ever since my ministry began to grow in 2004. Only the Lord knows the depth of suffering that I've endured. Job didn't have it so bad. I have a Friend in Heaven and that is my hope. Jesus is precious!

I ask for your earnest prayers for this ministry and me daily. This ministry is much bigger than me, it's about the Lord Jesus Christ, Who is THE WAY, THE TRUTH, and THE LIFE (John 14:6)! HEAR YE HIM!

“Even so, come, Lord Jesus” (Revelation 22:20).

I love you all in the Lord, whoever you may be!

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