THE GIANT OF DEAFNESS
November 27, 2020 1:10 PM
One day in 2012, I was at work on a conference call with an earpiece in my left ear. As the meeting dragged on and on, I switched my earpiece to my right ear and heard silence. So I switched back to the left ear and could hear perfectly. Then back to the right ear. Again silence. After doing this a few more times, I realized that I was completely deaf in my right ear!
The next few months I went to several ear specialists to try to regain my hearing. They said I had sudden sensorineural hearing loss (SSHL), which is the rapid loss of hearing either all at once or over several days and that it was probably permanent. They tried various treatments on me, but nothing worked. The last resort was a cochlear implant, which I rejected as too risky.
Being a business analyst, my job was to interact with other people, often in a group setting. Right before the sudden deafness, I began working on a large project with more than 70 other people. All of us were placed in a single large room so that we could easily communicate with each other. So the noise level was off the charts with many meetings occurring simultaneously in the same open space. Even though I had one perfect ear, I began to notice that it stopped hearing whenever there was background noise of any kind. I suddenly began to struggle just to hear normal conversation. My job had always been mentally taxing but the added struggle of just trying to hear became overwhelming. So my much loved job, which I used to adore and excel at, suddenly became extremely difficult and a source of continual frustration.
Not only did my sudden deafness impact me at work, but it impacted me in socially. Soon I started to shun social situations unless they were one on one and I could control the noise levels.
The sudden deafness also hindered my ability to localize sound. Once the fire alarm when off in my house around midnight while I was sleeping. I could hear the alarm voice saying “Fire” over and over, but I couldn’t locate which alarm. So I ended up changing the batteries on every single fire alarm until I finally discovered it was the one in the basement directly beneath my master bedroom by the process of elimination.
One day I stopped at a burrito place to eat lunch. There was background music playing and loud conversation. I asked the person at the counter a question and when he answered, I couldn’t understand a word of what he was saying. I ended up turning around and walking right back out. When I got to my car, I burst into tears of frustration and grief. Weeping bitterly, I mourned the loss of my right ear.
In late 2017 I moved from Ohio to Missouri at the urging of the Holy Spirit. That journey is documented in my “A Life Uprooted” testimony, which is also published on this same website. So I had just moved into a new place where I knew no one, having left all my friends and family behind. One day I was rinsing hair dye out of my hair in the sink, when suddenly some water accidentally rushed into my left ear – the hearing ear. Suddenly my hearing ear stopped hearing! I raced to the store to get some treatment for swim-ear, figuring that was the problem. When the clerk at the grocery store spoke to me, I had no idea what she said. I could see her speaking to me but her words were garbled and distorted. The swim-ear treatment did not fix the issue. Days, then weeks went by. Several times I would walk into the bathroom and see the water running full force in the sink because I had not turned it off on my last visit. Watching TV became cumbersome because I needed to read captions. But the worst part was the sudden isolation from other people.
One day during prayer, I remembered a word the Lord gave me in April of 2017. He said “HEAR THESE WORDS…PROCLAIM ME”. I kept thinking how on earth can I do that when I cannot have normal conversations and hear what others are saying? Then I came across the following passage in Exodus 4.11: “The Lord said to him, “Who gave human beings their mouths? Who makes them deaf or mute? Who gives them sight or makes them blind? Is it not I, the Lord?” It suddenly dawned on me that my situation couldn’t possibly be permanent if the Lord expected me to proclaim him.
The next few weeks I felt like I was in the battle of my life. During prayer I would remind God that he asked me to proclaim him but I couldn’t do it deaf, so could He please restore my hearing. Then the enemy would plant thoughts like “you will be permanently deaf and never able to interact with others again”. And “you are going to be alone for the rest of your life”. The first time I had those thoughts; I just panicked and broke down in tears. But then I remembered what God had promised me about proclaiming Him. And I knew from scripture that it is impossible for God to lie and that His Word cannot return void. So then I would feel a little better for a while. Then the enemy would remind me again how I would always be alone. Whenever this happened, I kept telling myself that it didn’t matter how horrible the circumstance was in the natural, I was going to take the Lord at His word that I would be able to proclaim Him one day. So I was going to trust in the Lord, and not the enemy’s lies. I started saying out loud “By your stripes, I decree that my ears are made whole and restored to perfect health and function in Jesus name. “ And then I would thank God for giving me ears to hear.
Then in the middle of February, after more than 40 days of almost complete deafness, hearing suddenly returned in my left ear! I woke up to the sound of my cat crying at my bedroom door for food. It was the sweetest sound ever! I turned on the TV and it nearly blasted me out of the room because I had it turned up so high trying to hear. That day I actually had a normal conversation with the letter carrier and I was overjoyed. My hearing was as good as it was before the hearing loss!
On 6/5/2019 the Lord gave me a vision of an ear being sewn with needle and thread. Since the only time I ever pick up a needle and thread is to repair something, I knew the Lord was saying that He is going to fix my right ear too. To date it has been 8 ½ years since the sudden deafness, so every day I decree His promise to me that my right ear is made whole. I know that my healing is a done deal since He gave me that promise. I just need to keep declaring that truth while I wait for it to manifest in the natural.
Looking back on the whole experience, I realize that I was being tested. Was I going to stand on God’s word to me, or was I going to believe the words of the enemy? Was I going to listen to God, who is incapable of lying, or satan, who is the father of lies? One mistake I made in the early days was to actually meditate on the negative thoughts that the enemy would plant in my mind. The minute I did that, it would send me into a dark place. What I have learned from my many wilderness experiences, is to not entertain the thoughts of the enemy. Cut them off immediately. As soon as the enemy tries to insert a negative thought, I say “I do NOT receive the lies of the enemy. I bind and rebuke the enemy’s lies and render them null and void in Jesus name.” Then I either read or listen to the Bible to fill my mind with truth. That makes me feel better and more hopeful every time.
NUMBERS 23:19 God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should repent. Has He said, and will He not do? Or has He spoken, and will He not make it good?
ISAIAH 55:11 So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; It shall not return to Me void, But it shall accomplish what I please, And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.
JOB 22:28 You will also declare a thing, And it will be established for you; So light will shine on your ways.
ISAIAH 53:5 But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.
PSALM 103:2-3 Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: 3Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases,
1 SAMUEL 17:33 And Saul said to David, “You are not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him; for you are a youth, and he a man of war from his youth.”34But David said to Saul, “Your servant used to keep his father’s sheep, and when a lion or a bear came and took a lamb out of the flock, 35 I went out after it and struck it, and delivered the lamb from its mouth; and when it arose against me, I caught it by its beard, and struck and killed it. 36 Your servant has killed both lion and bear; and this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, seeing he has defied the armies of the living God.” 37 Moreover David said, “The Lord, who delivered me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, He will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.”