Community Church Blog

3rd May 2016

I have been healed

We love hearing stories of what God is doing in people's lives and here is a brilliant story about God providing and bringing healing to Chris.

“In January 2008 I had a spasm in my back when opening a safe at work. This was the start of what was to be a 7-year struggle with pain, medication & depression and how God stepped in and turned it around.

Early in 2008 after several x-rays and MRIs I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in my lower spine . This progressed over the years from originally something I could control with a few pain killers a day, to the point in mid-2014 where I was told that my spine was crushing my nerves and that this would eventually paralyse me - this was called Cordia Equine.

It was confirmed that my discs and vertebrae in my spine had degenerated to such an extent that my nerves were being crushed, but due to being in my mid 20s they were unwilling to do anything about it because I was too young. I was on crutches, barely able to stand, being told I would not be able to have an operation because I was too young. I was also about to lose my job because my employers could no longer support me - they had been paying me full time for over a year of me working part time, and putting up with a drug and pain addled grumpy employee! My marriage was getting very strained as my wife and I had 2 young children. People who were around me and knew me, I pushed away. I felt alone, unwanted, unloved and after 6 years of agonising pain that was destroying me and my family I just wanted it to end.

It was at this point I took a purposeful overdose.

As you may have guessed, from the fact I’m telling this story, it didn’t work. The ½ bottle of liquid morphine and the packet of muscle relaxants I had taken should have killed me. Simply put they didn’t and only gave me a mild headache. God clearly didn’t want me to die, or to live in pain any longer.

It was a few weeks after this, in desperate need, I met a lady who worked in the same office building as me. She saw me and asked to pray for me. She worked for the local MP and was able to take my case to the hospital and convince the surgical team that I should be reassessed and have the operation I needed to decompress, fuse and realign my spine.

I had the operation on 9th September 2014. It was an 8-hour surgery. When I came out of the surgery I was on a lowered morphine dose and restricted medication. But I was in AGONY.

I cried in pain each night unable to sleep. I had tubes in my spine but was not allowed on my side or front so could not lay comfortably. I was in this state for 3 days wondering if I had made the worst decision of my life. I was in more pain after the surgery than before.

I was clearly addicted to morphine as was getting withdrawal symptoms and on the 3rd night after surgery I lay watching TV in floods of tears having put on a brave face when my children had come to visit me. I cried out to God “God! I can’t do this!” I couldn’t move, I couldn’t do anything, we still didn’t know if the operation had saved my central nervous system. It was then that I heard God’s voice clearer than I knew the pain inside my own body. “No, Chris you’re right. You can’t.”  I’ve always known God had a sense of humour but the sarcasm was too much to bare. In the deepest part of my soul I cried out “God, please help me. I can’t do this on my own.”

I awoke the next morning with absolutely no pain, completely refreshed and could feel my legs completely. I had the drains removed from my spine and was able to walk around and had no pain at all. I was released the next day so I could go to Church.

From that day I have not felt any pain from my back where the operation was. I still have the nuts and bolts to prove the operation but it was God’s hand that got me to the operating table and then through the other side. During what was a very joyous time I still had one major problem in that I was addicted to morphine. Not a nice substance. It tastes foul, makes everything else taste foul, its high is short and has the biggest downer.

A few Sundays later I decided I had to kick the morphine into touch, even if the medical professional advised I stay on it and took a staggered withdrawal. I closed myself in the lounge of my house, closed the curtains as the sun hurt my eyes. It took 3 days (yes there is a pattern to my stubbornness) until my wife said “Chris you’re trying to do it on your own again” that I called out and asked God to heal me of my addiction. He did.

I stopped taking any pain meds from that day and suffered no side effects. I was told my recovery would be slow and would take around 18 months. I was provisionally discharged from the surgeon’s care, physio and all other hospital departments in January 2015 - four months post operation - and I haven’t needed to go back since.

I have been healed.

In March 2015 I went snowboarding. In June 2015 I started cycling to work again. In August 2015 I started playing football again. I have had no pain. God heals. He also does other miracles that may not be seen straight away. Like my wife who stood by me, raised our children as basically a single parent and still found time to look after me when I couldn’t after myself, AND still managed to love me and be my wife, not just my carer. My children who loved me as Daddy, even when I couldn’t play with them, cuddle them, pick them up when they were hurt or just spend time with them. My employers who paid me a full time salary whilst I was working part time, and put up with my grumpy irritability. My in-laws who even though they didn’t really understand the pain I was in helped out with all the jobs I should have been able to do without judging me, and supported us financially to ensure that given all the other issues we were facing we didn’t have to worry about money on top of that.

God did all of this because he loves me. Not because I did anything or will do anything that would be good enough to earn His love. He did it all for his glory and looking back on it what Glory he has given! We all refer to the footprints poem but now looking back, WOW, he didn’t just carry me he raised and edified others too."

If you have a story of God working in your life then please email us at

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Maureen Hopkins
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