Popsicles in Paradise - I would not be truthful if saying that all is joy and popsicles in paradise as a Christian. Myself spent a year on a deserted island. The plane crashed that left the island with all the persons I spent the year with all were killed, I gave up my seat to a filipino who was to attend his fathers funeral. Spent years in pain clinics strapped to a bed getting 8 inch needles of cocktail pain medication shot into my chest ,they lasted a month, then off to work. At an early point in my life I was in the US Coast Guard and we did not have all the fancy swim gear and protection after years of many bouts of pneumonia diving into the icey waters at 2am my chest wall became separated from the rib cage nerves dangling and abscessed tumors. I was given heart catheters , several trips in an ambulance with sudden bursts of pain. Actually ended up in a steel cell locked up after having unbearable pain and taking too much medication. I pounded my fist bloody into the steel walls asking God why the suffering. A doctor Victor Gordon experimented on me and shot liquid nitrogen into my chest with 1/8 inch diameter needles with a device that looked like a drill press a 50/50 chance of survival, like being shot with several 22 caliber bullets. It killed all my nerves and the pain was relieved. My first born child had Downs syndrome and many complications of blindness and deafness, heart surgery pacemaker. My father was hurt at an early age and spent 2 years in the hospital after breaking his vertebra in a neck injury. I had to support my family at 12 years old mowing lawns , delivering groceries and 2 paper routes one at 5am and another after school till dark.
I myself suffered a major accident in which a neck injury occurred rear ended by a tractor trailer and the car totaled. We lost our home to foreclosure while I was in the hospital. Once a tornado took the roof off another house and totally destroyed it, it had to be re-built , it is where I live today. No it was not all popsicles in paradise but through all of this I remained faithful to God and knew he loved me.
Numerous other trials but I will not reflect on because what is important faith got me through it. I am now secure and own homes, cars and property - vacations in Canada , Maine well travelled. I have a doctorate and other degrees in advanced technologies all thanks to God. I have been visited by angels and the Holy Spirit has blessed me with spiritual gifts. I will say of all this the greatest gift is salvation for I had sinned and fallen short of his glory , it was at my lowest and highest points that God came through. I should have perished several times but here I am in near perfect health with two wonderful grandchildren. Amazing grace what if not tested , what if the Holy Spirit not revealed himself to me many years ago.