What a roller-coaster ride! While on a ministry trip to Singapore in March 2014, for no known reason, I was hit with horrible pain in my lower back and intense pain in my legs. This resulted in a microscopic disc surgery between L5 and S1 the following June due to a herniated or ruptured disc. Months passed by as I diligently engaged in physical therapy, people prayed and together, we were trusting for a full recovery. But roadblocks persisted, pain levels increased and my condition deteriorated.
This resulted in a "decompression and fusion surgery" on Feb. 1, 2016. I worked very diligently with a personal trainer and added other alternative healing approaches. Despite all my many efforts, the sciatic nerve inflammation continued. The neurosurgeon eventually stated that there was no cure and that the nerve damage would require pain management for the rest of my life. In 2016, I was forced to cancel my traveling public ministry for six to seven months. This was quite a lifestyle change and dramatically impacted the usual income streams of our ministry. Mercy! It was an unexpected twist and turn on the roller-coaster ride of recovery and restoration.
Being persevering and prayerful, I set another goal of springing back into action at the beginning of 2017. Month by month, slow progress was being made as I gave myself to an anti-inflammatory diet and introduced other alternative approaches. But then toward the end of August, the bottom seemed to fall out.
Up Close and Personal
Transparently, these past few weeks have been one of the darkest periods of time I have ever known. A recent CT scan was somewhat inconclusive but continued to reveal inflammation of the sciatic nerve and some additional complications that must be addressed in the next few weeks.
The "Come Back Kid" in me just keeps getting shoved back down. The accumulation of persistent pain, side effects of medications and the impact of delayed answers to prayer have taken a toll. With screaming pain and very little energy reserves left, I have wiped all public ministry for the months of September and October off the screen. I do not know what comes next.
I am not a quitter, but I must make significant changes in my life and ministry. Through prayer and consultation with my board and team, I am still determining what those changes need to look like. But I am seeking the Lord and believe that God still has a wonderful plan for my life (just like He does for yours).
Continue to Contend With Me
My core values are still in place. Prayer make a difference. On the cross, Jesus declared, "It is finished." The Word of God declares, "By His stripes, I am healed." Yes, I am one day closer to my miracle. And a miracle is what I need.
Please keep praying for me, for my family and for the staff of God Encounters Ministries to have provision, clear direction and wisdom for each situation. Please agree with me in the following prayer points and declarations:
Agree in these Five Declarations:
- We declare that God is good all the time and His mercies endure forever.
- We declare that all things work together for good.
- We declare that when the thief is caught he has to repay sevenfold.
- We declare that by His stripes I am healed.
- We declare that something good is just about to happen.
Agree in these Five Practical Prayer Points:
- Pray that my physical and emotional strength is renewed.
- Pray that the cycle of loss and trauma will be broken in Jesus' name.
- Call forth a hedge of protection around every sphere of my life and ministry.
- Pray that I receive full healing and miraculous intervention in Jesus' name.
- Pray for total restoration of finances, purpose and vision.
While the financial need for our ministry is substantial, we are not suggesting a specific financial contribution or asking for a certain number of donors. I simply believe that together in Jesus, we make a great team!
Would you pray and ask the Lord what you are to contribute to the James Goll Personal Support Fund? All donations from this appeal are tax-deductible contributions in the United States and will go both towards my personal salary, health insurance and on the going medical expenses. As a statement of gratitude, for any gift we will send you a free copy of my Understanding a Radical Faith in a 4 MP3 downloadable format.
So, please just listen and obey Him.
Your Prayers, Your Support
Recovery is a marathon, not a sprint. I must keep this in mind as I gaze into to my immediate future and the direction of this dear ministry. I am overwhelmed with gratitude as I look over my 42-plus years of full time vocational ministry. What a blessing! What a privilege to be an ambassador for Christ Jesus!
As I observe the times and the seasons, what I realize, is that I have never been able to accomplish the Lord's assignments without the prayers and support of people just like you. Thanks for your love, prayers and support. Remember, together in Jesus, we make a great team!
Dr. James W. Goll is the founder of God Encounters Ministries, an award-winning author and communications trainer and has ministered in over 50 nations. For information on his webinars and online classes, visit godencounters.com. James continues to live in Tennessee and is a joyful father and grandfather today.
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