HeartCry missionary Natalia Terentii serves on the Philadelphia Church team in Anenii Noi, Moldova. Her ministries include caring for the village widows, aiding with the women’s ministry and preparing food for periodic church conferences. Over the years, she has suffered at times from multiple illnesses that have left her bedridden for weeks. This month she magnifies God’s goodness in the lessons she has learned in His school of affliction and how He used a doctor’s recommended diet to restore her health:
Be praised and glorified, our God! You reign forever! To You be the glory, honor and praise! What can we say? What can we boast about? We can only boast about him. Everything passes away, but his grace and mercy endure forever. Our lives are in his hands and only He knows what we will go through and what kind of help we need. We can plan our life ahead, but there are moments that we don’t expect and don’t anticipate. You have expectations and questions. You can’t change the situation, but you can change your attitude. If He allows a situation in your life, He knows all the details and He also has the solution to that situation. He also deals with our hearts and our character, while we only care about our bodies and our circumstances.
Yes, we are Christians and we believe, but do we trust him indeed? Job 23:3 says, “If only I knew where to find him; if only I could go to his dwelling!” We have already received so much grace that it makes me shake before his face. He is involved in every detail of my life, he’s there for me and he is the Author.
I give thanks to the Lord for the good days, as well as for the difficult days that he has prepared for me.
No Surgery Needed
I’m so grateful to the Lord for answering our prayers. I went to the doctors again and they gave me medical treatment with a special diet and, to my surprise, in his mercy, everything was solved without a surgery. Hallelujah! I still can’t believe it! It was very difficult. But my body is ephemeral, and I need to focus on the heavenly things, which are eternal.
I am grateful to the Lord for being able to see, to breathe, to walk and I raise my hands towards heaven from where my Savior is about to come. We have busy lives, we have needs and sickness and we have to work and the list could go on if we focus on this ephemeral earthly life, but God has a great and glorious work to do in each of us and you can never know what is waiting for you ahead. Our entire life is a school and he is the teacher. When you are strong and healthy, you can make plans and you don’t see or feel the small details that God wants you to see. You need to stop in order to see them, but how do you do that? I have so many things to do, but God shows me these things and I don’t know how to do them. If you want to have a new experience in life and a new attitude towards God, you must be ready!
If someone would have told me that it would take all this, I would have said “no”in the beginning. But he allowed all these things in my life, he worked in me and he brought me to a new life, so that he would be glorified. There are seasons in our lives, just as winter, spring, summer, and fall. After winter, we expect the sun and the warm weather, but often it is still cold and you keep waiting. This is what is actually going on right now in our country. It is still cold in April.
Still, the sun is up in the sky, the birds are chirping, but I’m still cold. This is how my life has been in the last 16 months. Darkness without answers. But I have learned from the book of Job that God doesn’t owe us anything. During my sickness, I’ve learned to wait and to give thanks. It is difficult to wait, but what can you do? This is a new stage in my life; people, money, prayer, hospitals, doctors, medicines, questions. He remains faithful, both in small things and in great things, but how about you? Is it easier for you to accept his will or to murmur? We need to choose to be grateful.
I took every day as it was, and if it was a difficult day, I stayed in prayer with the One that had created me, who loves me and who is waiting for me. Step by step, all things are being solved, but not necessarily as I want. Many friends and church members were praying for me, while a sister and I were fasting for the surgery I was supposed to undergo. The doctor told me he was ready to do the surgery, but he also told me that I should avoid it and try to find other method. I went to three other doctors. My cousin took me to a gastroenterologist. Then pastor Pavel took me to Emmanuel Clinic where I was seen by a therapist who prescribed many pills for me. But I couldn’t take the pills, because I wasn’t able to eat. A sister from our church told me I should have a detox, but her doctor said that he was afraid to take my case, because of my rare diagnosis. Pastor Igor said I should go to a third doctor – a nutritionist. I went there and, after seeing the results of my medical tests, he said that I had gluten intolerance. He recommended a special diet and no pills. I was so surprised to see that this diet really worked.
When the leaders and my friends asked me how I was, I told them that everything was OK without any surgery. I will see the doctor again in two weeks’ time. Praise the Lord! So now I need to maintain this diet for my entire life. It’s a totally new diet, but I’m so glad that God led me toward this solution. When I began to feel better, I couldn’t stay indoors anymore. I had to walk after every meal. I even visited several people. I can now lead the sisters’ meeting and work in the garden. I pray that I also will be able to go visiting.
When we had a prayer meeting at church, I was able to testify about the way in which God prepares us for heaven. I told everyone that I’m getting ready for heaven. God is the One who raises us up, so that we can testify about him and praise him for as long as we live. My situation was so difficult, because I laid in the bed for almost a year because of my thyroid issues, and then I had intestinal issues for about five months. Still, he is remained faithful in all these things.
The non-Christian people that I have talked to are so surprised. The Lord is the only One who can solve our problems and answer our questions.
God at Work in Other Ways
I also have good news to share with you. I urged a lady from our church to repent and turn to God and she repented. It is so good to see the way in which God is working. He works miracles in spite of our weakness. Step by step, we can return to our ministries. I’m so grateful for all those who prayed for me and helped me financially. People ask me how I live and I say, “by grace alone!” May God bless and reward you!
Some of my friends also helped me with money for my medical tests. Medicine is so expensive in our country that I didn’t want to go to the doctors because I needed so much money for this. But God gave me money specifically for this and I went to the doctors. My diet is also more expensive now, but I try to manage with God’s help. I can shout out loud, “My God is alive and he’s coming soon!” We want a solution to our problems right now, but what is the lesson that we learn from them? Who is he for you? How do you testify for him? Psalm 42:43: “Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”