I was having a normal Friday, which I normally take off from work, two weeks ago. I met up with a good fried for lunch and was feeling great – until later that evening. Even though I didn’t do much that day, I started to feel a little tired. I told my wife I needed to lie down for a few minutes. It was all downhill from there.

Out of nowhere, I felt like I was hit by a ton of bricks. A massive crippling headache came over me, high fever, chills, nausea and vomiting. I figured it was the cold or maybe the flu, so I better get lots of rest and take it easy. However, by Sunday night my symptoms got much worse. I could barely talk and couldn’t move. Medication had no affect on me. I was experiencing the worst pain of my life. So, my wife took me to the ER. I had a viral infection. I was loaded up with pain killers and given some strong prescription drugs for the pain. I went home feeling better.

But that didn’t last long. By the the next morning all the symptoms were back in full force. The prescription pain killers had no affect. By Monday night all my symptoms were worse than before. I went back to the ER and was told I had pneumonia. I was given narcotics 10x the power of morphine at the ER, which lasted only a few hours. By the next morning I was completely out of it again. Phasing in and out of consciousness with a fever that went up to 104.7. The last four days were full of relentless pain. My wife was in touch with the hospital and was considering asking them to put me in the hospital.

My friends and family were all praying. The friend that I had lunch with on Friday, Paul, was coming over to pray for me. He entered my sick infested dark bedroom. I was pretty stink at that point and was in excruciating pain. He prayed for me for about 45 minutes. I suddenly had the urge to sit up, although it hurt to do so. Without warning my stomach purged itself of everything inside and a large stream of vomit exited my mouth splatting on the bedroom floor. I had vomited numerous times over the last few days, but usually felt it coming. This time was different – no physical warning. Paul left shortly after and I went back to my bed exhausted.

Within 20 minutes of Paul leaving (and my horrific vomiting experience), the headache started to go away for the first time in 4 days. My fever went from 104.7 to normal within a few hours. By the next morning, the worst of my symptoms were gone. I still had another 9 days for my energy level back to normal. But I was out of pain and it never returned.

God brought me a breakthrough. I’m not sure what your theological stance is on healing, but I believe that God healed me. Narcotics, medication and the ER had little to no affect on me. But healing begun when someone prayed for me. It was quite an experience!

I believe that God will often bring breakthrough in our lives when we rely on Him. He will bring healing when we’re sick. He will put together the shattered pieces of our lives and mend broken relationships. He will remove  the obstacles and challenges that we face. God is bigger than we can ever imagine! He is all-powerful and is active in us and around us. He chooses to do amazing things through His people.

Now, we do live in a broken world. Which means that breakthrough doesn’t always happen. The sick are often not healed. Broken relationships stay broken. No matter how much we pray, the obstacles remains. This is simply the reality of living in an imperfect, messed up world. But it doesn’t mean that God is not alive and active. The problem is that we forget that God is big and can bring breakthrough. With Jesus, we always have hope. And when the problem remains and the obstacle won’t go away, Jesus is with us. He molds us and shapes up through difficulty.

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Over twelve years ago Nick Diliberto lauched a preteen ministry with a handful of volunteers and about 25 kids. Over the years it grew to over 100 kids and has impacted hundreds of young people's lives. Nick is the driving force behind, Children's Director at La Jolla Presbyterian Church, workshop speaker and author of an ongoing preteen column in Children's Ministry Magazine.