Burned my hand on Saturday August 13. It was the weirdest thing; a heated neck warmer that I’ve used for years burned my hand behind my head under the warmer but my neck was fine. Anyway the cause is neither here nor there but the healing is very here and there. Praying for healing and nursing it myself, I watched it for days treating it with various remedies which proved to be at least not harmful. Eventually I did go to an emergency room where my daughter works downtown to get it looked at, after about five days. There it was cleaned up of the blisters and treated with antibiotic ointment and bandages. I was sent home as having a second-degree burn, assessed by two different doctors and the burn clinic nurse that it would heal in time and I should follow up the next week with a doctor.
Happily I went home with assurance of natural healing. I continued to pray for it to heal speedily and decided to go to the follow-up visit five days later to get the best advice on how to encourage the healing process.
At this time mind you, my body is being prayed over intensely for my long term condition of spinal cord injury and now this burn also at this time for healing, over and over. This burn was an interruption and distraction from the intense efforts of healing surrounding me. No signs of infection and high hopes were mine as I went in to see the “specialist.”
In the burn clinic, 5 more days later the doctor walks in, quite a character. Arms hanging at his sides he stood there like Tim Conway on Carol Burnett’s show and shook his head saying “Oh, that’s bad. That’s a bad burn. Definitely 3rd degree.” Now, I was there for the previous assessment and saw my flesh (above) where they called it 2nd degree. I was there watching the formation of what I called a scab which turned dark and hard as scabs do which means nothing except that it’s protecting the wound that’s healing underneath. I believed that the tissue on top of the wound was protective material but the doctor tried to convince me that it was dead skin tissue of a third-degree burn and would not heal. He said skin graft surgery was a good possibility. Gave me some Silvadene and wanted to see me in a week. The nurse even said it looked too pink around the edges and might be getting infected. I felt the pink color was part of the healing and blood vessels were doing their thing. At that time I was just shocked and in disbelief of them. I explained that the E.R. people called it second-degree and that it would heal fine. He said “sometimes these things are deceiving and it’s definitely 3rd degree” etc. I left wanting another opinion, not trusting his opinion and questioning my own. Forgetting God’s promises, I began to meditate on what I was told by the “specialist.” For some reason, I began to feel panicked and I couldn’t sleep much. I began to feel anxious and defeated. The opinion of this doctor whom I didn’t regard as much more than a quack at the time, elevated in my heart to a place above God’s opinion. Satan had me in a stranglehold.
In two days I decided to get a second opinion from a well-respected, top notch hospital 40 minutes west of my house which also has a burn center and a spinal cord unit, appropriate for my condition. I had confidence that their opinion would be more reasonable. At that hospital, I went to their Emergency Room just as I did at the first hospital, and the burn was assessed there.
(Aug 25) Again I had no signs of infection; all my vitals were in top shape; the burn was now 12 days old and although deep it seemed to them to be healing. This emergency room doctor had the same opinion as the first emergency room doctor; it was healing. However, just as I felt relieved and about to go home with their blessing, they brought the burn unit team in next to consult as a higher authority.
This burn unit team insisted that all the layers of skin were gone, that if they pulled up the top dead layer there, nothing was under it but bone and tendons; they insisted that it was high risk for infection and immediate surgery was necessary. They wanted to hospitalize me for the next three days and have surgery on the 4th day. The plan was skin grafting from my hip plus a layer of synthetic skin in between!
I started crying and was overwhelmed. Funny how by faith I’m always prepared to rebuke a cancer diagnosis but let a new injury happen and some doctors tell me it’s not going to heal without surgery and I fall apart like a two-dollar suit case. My husband boldly said the hospitalization was completely unnecessary since there was no sign of infection and that if we were to do the surgery we could come back on that day. Slowly I came back to the truth and we did leave the hospital. My weekend was fine. What would have been a nightmare of scheduling my 24-hour caregivers to help me, a C6 quadriplegic in a hospital, turned out to be a normal weekend of care at home with plans to attend a wedding; and we did all that just fine.
I got prayer several times and stayed in tune with God until in church I heard Him (God) say, in Bill Clinton’s voice: “Who’re you going to believe? Me or that so-and-so?” I’m not advocating Bill Clinton; I’m not a democrat; I’m not saying God and Bill have anything in common. But God has ways to communicate His feelings to us and He does have creative and humorous ways to do it. His word says we’re healed. My prayer ministers said it’s healed. They did not tell me not to get surgery but encouraged me that it would heal. The realization that I needed to believe God over the doctor became very clear.
I was set up and scheduled for surgery when I left the 2nd hospital, but when they called 2 days later to give me instructions, I canceled the surgery. It was the most emotional thing I’ve had to do in a long time. But after I made the decision, I had the peace that passes all understanding. I had no peace about surgery and all peace about no surgery. I explored and researched about the natural process of healing wounds and over the next week I gained confidence daily that it was healing despite the fact that one doctor said it would be a miracle if it got better without surgery. That was “no problem,” I told him, “I see lots of miracles.”
For weeks I fed myself healing testimonies. I also felt God helped me by telling me to study information about the normal process of wounds. That gave me something to focus on expecting instead of thinking about it not healing. Next, I heard God tell me to call a friend of mine and share my story. She told me that she had had a third-degree burn before which healed without surgery. It finally became easier to believe the truth that healing would happen than the lie that it would not. So I became fully persuaded and my emotions calmed.
For months I was hearing that I have been double minded these many years. These verses spoke to me:
- “A double minded man is unstable in all his ways; let not that man think he will receive anything from the Lord”
- “A house divided against itself cannot stand.”
“How have I been double minded?” I asked God a few months ago. I finally had my answer. I have been believing two things lo these many years regarding my spinal cord injury. I’ve been believing that God is going to heal me but I’ve also been believing that my condition cannot be healed. I was told it would never improve, so I believed that without supernatural intervention it was impossible to improve my condition. And when you believe that, it’s a mindset that causes faith in NOT healing, also known as unbelief.
That Sunday I saw my friend in church who had had the large 3rd degree burn once on her leg. She showed me where it was and I could not see any scar. She said that the doctors wanted her to have surgery but she didn’t agree to it. She wanted to believe for healing. Her leg’s skin looked like normal. Praise God for telling me to call her. It was just for my peace of mind that He told me to call her, as a testimony to help me believe. God said on the inside of me, “See? I did it before, I’ll do it again.”
I was so shocked that I was so affected by doctors. I had thought I was beyond the affects of a doctor’s words. I thought I was able to believe in faith more than I did. I was shaken by their words much more than I expected myself to ever be. There was a root of unbelief different than cancer would have affected me. The words of a doctor saying “it won’t heal” were the same words spoken to me 31 years ago about my spinal cord injury. This is why I was shaken. As I overcome the lie this time, proving to myself the truth that everything heals under the blessing of Abraham, I am healing more than a burn. I’m healing my heart, curing unbelief. We are redeemed from all curses Gal 3:13 says and wounds that don’t heal are curses. So everything heals for us because we are The Blessed.
I was going to wait to publish this blog until it finished healing, but I am fully convinced that it is healing. So I’ll keep this blog updated with new pictures as it progresses. I would have appreciated these pictures and this blog when I needed it a few weeks ago. Hopefully it helps others.
So it took about two months to complete but she’s a beauty! I had actually burned myself on this same place 30 years ago when I was first injured, second degree burn. It’s a crazy coincidence but because of lack of sensation in my hand there both times. It was scarred badly but had healed without grafting then too. It actually looks better now than before the burn of this year! 😳 “He makes all things new again.”