My Journey with MS

My diagnoses and path to spiritual peace

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  • Matt Dowie

His Word Never Returns Empty

MS Awareness Month. This is the second year where this month has truly meant something to me, and to be honest, the first two years I knew this month was MS Awareness month. Despite it being the second year where the focus was on something that directly impacted me, I still wasn't sure what this month was going to bring. I had big plans for this month. I was going to post on social media with regularity to help raise awareness for MS and I was going to hit the fundraising for my bike ride hard. Then two unexpected things happened. First, Channel 5 We Are Iowa reached out and wanted to do a story about my MS journey and secondly, the corona virus hit the United States. These two unexpected events have taught me a lot about myself and MS that I didn't realize I was going to learn this month.

Ever since I was diagnosed with MS I was determined to raise awareness. MS is a disease that comes with a lot of fear and misunderstanding. I was one of those people that was afraid of my future with MS. How was it going to impact my life? My families life? I quickly realized that the fear that MS brought was a fear of the unknowns. As I researched MS and started to understand how it attacks my body, and the impacts it could have. How to mitigate those risks and help my body recover from attacks helped me to ease some of those fears. I was determined to raise awareness so that others, whether newly diagnosed, or who have a loved one with MS would be able to ease their fears as well. Through all of that I was worried about how many people read my posts, or how many people commented on things. I would regularly check how many people read my blogs and then one day Lauren pointed me to Isaiah 55:11 which reads "so is my word that goes out from my mouth: it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it." She challenged me to stop looking at how many views I have and instead just post a message and let it go. These blog posts will reach the people God intends for them to reach. It may be one person, or it may be 1,000 people but it will never return empty. It was something I absolutely needed to hear. The last probably 6 months or so I would stress about how often I would blog to make sure I had stuff for people to read but didn't always have something on my heart to talk about so it was hard to write. After my humbling chat with Lauren it feels like a burden has been lifted off of me a little bit. This is my first blog in nearly 2 months! Which is a long time but in those 2 months I never felt like God was placing something on my heart to write about. So I didn't.

As I stopped stressing about getting my thoughts out there and making sure people heard my story I was contacted by Channel 5 saying they wanted to do a story about me. God is really good at answering prayers or fulfilling desires once you finally give up control and let God do His thing! I finally stopped stressing about how many people I was reaching with my posts and He presents an opportunity to go on a local news channel and share a little bit about my story! It was an incredible opportunity and I am grateful for Channel 5, Karrie Anderson, and everyone else involved in getting this news segment completed. They did an incredible job sharing Karrie and I's story and helping us spread some awareness. I have had a few people reach out to me about the news segment, some from as far away as San Diego, but I have no clue how many people have seen that video. I don't know how many lives that video touched and it doesn't matter to me. I believe whole-heartedly that God is using me through this trial to be a light to others. I don't know who those people are or how many are out there. I also don't know if I have reached them or not but knowing those answers no longer consumes me. It no longer consumes me because I know and trust that God's message won't return empty. I know that at some point in my journey with MS my story or better yet, God's story for me will touch the people it needs to touch. To continue my theme of not stressing about the number of views and trusting that God is in control I plan to post this blog and not return to this site until God has something else for me to write about.

I described a story about giving up control to God and as soon as he took control my story was broadcast to a much broader audience. Here is another story of God doing awesome things once I give up control. Prior to leaving for Mexico I was talking to a female and it wasn't really going anywhere. I decided to stop worrying about making something work and figured I would just go to Mexico and forget about the female population for a bit. I could resume my search for the future Mrs once I got back to the States. I had given God control of that aspect of my life. I was no longer worrying about it. Next thing I know I run into this girl named Lauren. I quickly became smitten with her and next thing you know we are married for nearly 6 years, have 2 kids, and one is about to start kindergarten! I am convinced that God has a sense of humor.

What is on your mind currently? As you read this blog what pops in your head? Could it be something that God wants you to give up control of? Stressing about how your peers view you? Will you have enough money to pay the bills? Am I going to get sick with the CoronaVirus? I challenge you to think about what might be on your mind and pray about giving that to God. It isn't an easy thing to do. I went nearly 18 months writing blogs and wondering how many people I was reaching. Wanting to write content that I thought people would like and share. As soon as I stopped worrying about that and gave it to God he increased my exposure 10 fold. God knows what he is doing. I promise! Take a leap of faith, trust God, and know that His word will never return empty!

Take Heart

John 16 : 33

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