Katrina's Story

Our previous post left us wondering how Katrina was able to apply some biblical principles from our training day. Here's Katrina's story:

The day after our day of the training, I woke up in during night not feeling well. After hours of pain and vomiting, I asked Robert to take me to the “walk in clinic” at my doctor’s office. It was more of a “crawl in” since I could barely stand or walk. After a quick examination, they called ahead and sent me to the emergency room because they thought it could be “very serious.”

It was a big deal for me to want to go to the doctor in the first place, but the Emergency Room is on my list of NEVER go places. I did not anticipate going to the ER, just the doctor’s office and back home. I had been laying on the bathroom floor for hours and had put on the closest clothes I could find; an unmatched sweat-suit that was too big. When we left the house I asked Robert to get me a jacket. He asked if it mattered which one.  I told him it didn’t. But when he brought a wool jacket I thought, “Oh, not that one, because it’s dry clean only.” I did not say anything out loud and took it anyway. So we were in the last place I wanted to be, looking terrible, wearing the last jacket I wanted to be wearing, in a packed, dirty, germ filled waiting room of the ER.

The nurse that took my info and drew my blood told me that there was something going around. They had several people in that day with stomach cramps and vomiting. She said that I might not want to wait three hours just to be told I was fine, but I could wait if I wanted. When she took my blood, somehow it got all over my coat. She gave me a new vomit bag because the last one had been put into my coat pocket when they moved me from the waiting room.  Then, we went back to sit in the waiting room.

In the hours of waiting, my conversation with Robert sounded like this:

Me: “We should just go home. It is probably something that I ate and my stomach's sore from not eating for hours. I might be better off just going home and laying down.”

Robert: “Do you really want to go home? Why do you want to go home?”

He was basically telling me to complete a journal and think through my motives and desires. I talked with Robert about what I shared with you in the leadership training. Not much of a dialogue really, in my dirty coat with my vomit bag, hunched over in the chair. It was more of a ‘remember what you've been studying and teaching, internal dialogue.’

I internally completed a journal by walking through my thoughts about why I wanted to leave and what the Bible called my thoughts:

  • “What if I'm fine and I sat here all day? That would make me look foolish.” This was the fear of what others think or fear of man.

  • “How much is this going to cost? It could be for nothing. Just something I ate.” This was financial concerns not trusting the God Who provides.

  • I realized one of my main thoughts had to do with my coat. I was upset that Robert got my wool coat because it has to be dry cleaned. “Why couldn't he grab my washable Costco coat?” “Why didn't I just say something before we left the house?” “I knew I should have said something.” “If I would have known that we were going to the ER, I never would have chosen this coat. “ The inconvenience of going to the cleaners was on my mind.

If only... If only I knew the future and could have control. This is not trusting God’s control and care.

Amazing what can go through your mind in a situation like that. Remember, I am in intense pain and vomiting. I want to feel better and the pain to stop. I was actually more concerned about how I looked (which was really bad, as you can imagine), about financial comfort, and the inconvenience of going to the dry cleaner. I was more concerned about these things than the current pressing situation and pain. Crazy. It shows how important we can make something - how we can love something too much. How quickly I can doubt God’s grace and care for me.

What did not naturally go through my mind was biblical truth. I had to put it there. I had to think on it. When it came down to it, at the heart of my struggle was: I just wanted to know the best decision to make that would not cost me in appearances or finances or convenience. I wanted to know the future. I had already made a bad decision about which coat to wear. I did not want to make another. I wanted to know if this would be worth my wait. I did not trust God. In those moments, I understand the desire to have God tell us in a clear way what to do, either by a sign, an inner nudge, or a still small voice. Or even to just have my husband tell me what to do. (Which he did, but he also chose the wrong jacket.) When all the wrong motives and reasons were exposed, the answer was actually clear. We stayed.  But the old thinking did not go away easily. When I saw the doctor, I said, “It must be something I ate or maybe I'm just hungry.” (The hidden message: Just in case there is nothing wrong I want you to know I don't want to be here and I should get my money back.)

Several hours later they removed my appendix. When the surgery was over I called my Mom. It is very interesting that she was in the same situation at about my age. She left the hospital and almost died. When I talked to my mom about this, she said, “I'm glad you chose differently.” I told her I chose differently because I had something she did not, the truth of the word of God to instruct and teach me. The same thoughts she struggled with came to my mind but that does not mean they needed to stay there, or I needed to act on them. Rather, I needed to change them. We talked about the value of the Word of God in everyday life. I'm thankful that the biblical principles from the training day were fresh in my mind. So, I did not look for an audible voice to tell me to stay or go. I did consider biblical principles, even when it was the last thing I would naturally do.

The Grace of God does train us to be different, changing our thinking and our emotions.  I'm also thankful for the body of Christ and all the wonderful ladies that prayed for and helped me and my family. Your actions were noticed by others. My Mother sent a card to thank everyone that helped me.  It was such a picture to me of the things that we learned. Doctrine changes us to influence our world.