22 May 2016

Tracy Cooke Wainwright - Testimony of Overcoming

Tracy Cooke Wainwright

We all have challenges. There are certainly times in life when those challenges seem overwhelming. Looking back on the many I've faced, it's interesting how clearly God's hand is revealed.

When considering what to write about, the whole gamut ran through my mind. The eighteen month time period my parents got divorced, moved out of state separately, I graduated high school, started college, and then ran out of money, lost my place to live, got dumped by my fiancé, and couldn't find a job. Then there are the many times I've dealt with depression. I was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes at age 31. Then there's my current situation: my family of six is living in the upstairs of my in-laws house.

As you can see, there are many trials I've experienced and been brought through by the grace of the Lord. However, the issue that surfaced and I feel led to share about is my chronic back pain.

I remember lower back pain as early as 16. I remember people always telling me I was too young for back pain. I generally replied that I wished they'd tell my back that. My father and I nailed down the initiating incident to when I hyperextended my knee about age 13. As the years continued, a handful of minor traffic accidents seemed to contribute to my discomfort. Then, when my children were little I pulled my back out for the first time. A couple years later, I did it again. And in December 2012 I pulled it out a third time. This is the one that really knocked me down.

I had some speaking commitments the week after. Plus, it happened three weeks before Christmas. That I had a busy schedule would be an understatement. (You know how that time of year can get!) It was the week before Christmas my mom and sister showed up and took over. This meant I was able to do what I should have been doing since day one - staying off my feet. The bigger problem was sitting didn't work. I had to lay down. All the time.

I struggled with both the pain and being basically incapacitated. I watched about as much Netflix as I could stand and still had lots of recovering to do. One day I randomly did a search for Galatians on YouTube. I came across some well-known believers reading the whole book at a conference. It was a blessing! Especially since it led me to listening to two new preachers I didn't know about before. 

I didn't want to be flat on my back the weeks before and week after Christmas. I'm not good at doing nothing. However, God used (and I'm thinking maybe even brought me to that place on purpose) that time to speak some powerful things into my life. It started a journey of digging even deeper into scripture. It proceeded some of the deepest growth in my relationship with the Lord that I've ever experienced.

I've never completely recovered. I still deal with back pain almost every day. While I never would have wished it, and would be very grateful for complete healing, God has used it to teach me more about Him. And He's used it to help my ability to have compassion on others. 

Hmm. So He's used my injuries and discomfort to teach me to love Him and others better.

In His grace and mercy, He not only upheld His promises and has been with me every step of my pain, but He's also used it to bless me. I'm so grateful I've learned not to dwell on what I don't want to deal with, but instead focus on what He's doing through my circumstances! God has truly used this and other situations to transform my thinking to be more intentional about focusing on Him regardless of what's going on in life.


About Tracy: Tracy Wainwright is a wife, mother of four, women’s ministry team leader, women’s conference director, speaker, and multi-published author. She loves sharing the lessons God teaches her with other women through Bible study, over coffee, at women’s events, and in her books. She’s written fiction, nonfiction, adult, young adult, and children’s books. Her latest book, A Transformed Mind: Changing Your Thoughts to Change Your Life, is the first of a twelve part series.

Giveaway: One of our commenters will receive an ebook copy of the first part of Tracy's new series.



12 comments:

  1. Tracy, thank you for sharing your testimony with us.
    Blessings, Tina

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    1. It's an honor to share what God's done, Tina! Thanks for reading.
      By His grace and for His glory,
      Tracy

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  2. Thank you, Tracy. Your testimony touched my heart and encouraged me today.

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    1. Kathleen, I'm so glad to share encouragement! May God bless you tremendously through your heart for Him.
      By His grace and for His glory,
      Tracy

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  3. TRACY, thank you for being with us on OWG today and for sharing your inspiring testimony with our viewers. God surely does use our infirmities to have more compassion on others. I know healthy people who can't even stand to hear that you're sick because they have never been through anything. God bless you and may the healing power of Jesus Christ touch your back.

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    1. Diana,
      It was an honor to be here. I'm so grateful what God has taught me through these trials. His is so gracious! May we all follow Him in that! May He bless you, also! Thanks so much.
      By His grace and for His glory,
      Tracy

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  4. Anyone who has experienced back pain can relate to how awful that time in life can be. I hope you don't experience any more times as debilitating as you have already gone through. God is good, and His plans are so much better than our own. Thank you for sharing today.

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    1. Phyllis,
      Back pain is a huge challenge, and I know so many people who've had a much harder time than me. Thank you so much for your kind words. He is amazing and His plans are beyond our comprehension!
      By His grace and for His glory,
      Tracy

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  5. Thanks so much for sharing your testimony, Tracy. Isn't it wonderful to know that the Lord always has our best in mind, in spite of the trials and tribulations we experience? Praise His name!!

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    1. Betti,
      Yes, knowing He is in charge and still sovereign in everything is a great comfort!
      By His grace and for His glory,
      Tracy

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  6. Wow TRACY, you certainly have had your fair share of difficult trials but your perseverance and faith in God is inspiring. And no doubt what has brought you through it all, and with such a great attitude! Thank you so much for sharing your testimony here on OWG and reminding us all to look to God throughout our trials and pain, rather than focusing on our circumstances. I pray you get that healing! And are able to move out of the in-laws. :-)

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    1. Noela,
      Thank you so much for your kind words. It is a great comfort to know God is always working and when I surrender every single thing to Him, He does amazing things in and through me. You're prayers are very appreciated!
      By His grace and for His glory,
      Tracy

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