What I've learned ...
I've been asked what I've learned during the past 2 1/2 years with a pinched nerve in my back, and now the slow recuperation from surgery. I guess the first thing that comes to mind is that God gives us what we need. But I mean that a little differently than you might think.
Some people say "if you only have enough faith you could be healed" and they mean well, but it's not the truth. Jesus said that it only takes faith the size of a mustard seed (Matt. 1:20). When we hurt, a miraculous healing seems like exactly what we need. But when that healing doesn't happen it's obvious that God has something different in mind. I did experience the miracle of healing once when that was what I needed. This time I obviously needed something else.
One night when the pain kept me up and I was praying through my tears, I asked Him to show me what I needed to learn so that it could end. I heard His still, small voice say "Glenn is learning, too."
So, I also learned that my focus can be too narrow. God's plans are much bigger, better and more far-reaching than I can imagine. He uses everything to make us (and those close to us) more like His Son. It may be a while before I know all that He's taught me through the past years, but I know it wasn't for nothing. That I am more like His Son because of it. Because He promised.
And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. ... For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Rom 8:28, 38-39)