I share the complete story of my recent health scare on Vivid Talk™ Radio. I’ll tell you some of the back story here and let you know what I learned. After suffering with uterine fibroids and anemia for over two decades, cold, headaches, fatigue, and pain were common. The truth of the matter was I was dying a slow death and did not know it. I was too distracted to notice.
As soon as I stepped in, I blacked out, but I remember saying, “I do not want to die here. Felicia, get up.”
I was a speaker at a weekend conference. I showed up. Popped a few pills. And hit the stage. I had started, what I thought was my cycle. However, I was actually hemorrhaging, but thinking, “I’ll go to the doctor on Monday.” When Monday came around, I had gone through 45 overnight pads. I stepped out of bed, took two steps, and everything inside of me fell on the floor. I panicked, but my assumption is my adrenaline was flowing. I heard my heart beating in my head. Later I learned that my heart wasn’t getting the blood that it needed, so I was headed for a cardiac episode.I had gone through 45 overnight pads over the weekend. My body was responding to a case of severe anemia. My son was at home, and I didn’t want him to see the scene, so I managed to clean it up and get in the shower. As soon as I stepped in, I blacked out, but I remember saying, “I do not want to die here. Felicia, get up.” Somehow, I kicked the shower door open, crawled out, and called out to my son. He found me, got me together, and rushed me to the hospital.
Miraculously, I walked into the emergency room under my own power. My palms and the insides of my eyes were snow white. Turns out my hemoglobin was at 3 (12-15 is normal). My platelets were 8 (of 145-450). The doctor informed me that an emergency blood transfusion and an emergency platelet transfusion were required to literally save my life. She could not understand how I was conscious or even talking.
If you’re reading this, and you’ve been self-diagnosing, I want you to make an appointment because this is not a game. There are too many of us dying still young.
I spent a week in the Intensive Care Unit. If I never heard the Holy Spirit, if I never knew what God has for me, he set me right on top of my purpose. He made me sit there and think about it. He said, “I’m entrusting you with a vision. But I can’t even communicate with you because your temple is sick, and I cannot live in it.” I think what we miss as visionaries and leaders is where the vision came from. We miss that in order for us to get to the level of success that God has planned for us, we have to take care of ourselves. God needs our temples to be in order. If you’re reading this, and you’ve been self-diagnosing, I want you to make an appointment because this is not a game. There are too many of us dying still young.
If we don't have the physical, mental, and spiritual capacity–as leaders and visionaries–to carry out the vision, we won't be a true representation of God.Click To Tweet
The first thing you have to do is make a decision that you want to live and see all of the hard work come to fruition. You want to be around to see how your legacy impacts others. You want to be around to see how the vision that God gave you made others’ lives better. You want to see that happen. Everything about your body is scripturally based. God says in 1 Corinthians, “Don’t you know that your body is a temple? That the Holy Spirit dwells inside of you? You don’t belong to yourself because I had to pay a price for that. So, here’s the deal, since I paid a price for that, it doesn’t belong to you. I’m entrusting you to take care of it.” This tells me three things: 1) You have to make a decision, 2) You have to become informed about who’s you are and who you are, and 3) You must move forward in the change. We’re always evolving. We’re always growing. We’re always learning.
In that hospital bed, I had to make a decision. I was clear that the decision that I made there would affect the rest of my life, and it would impact the vision that God had given me. He was asking me, “Can I trust you? I’ve given you the warning. I need to see that you’re adhering to it.” So, I’ve made a decision. The Bible says that God worked for six days, and on the seventh day, he rested. I find it interesting that he put that in the same chapter as the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20). If it was that important, wouldn’t that mean that you should be doing that too? God places a high level of importance on rest because we are judged by the fruit that we bear. If we don’t have the physical, mental, and spiritual capacity–as leaders and visionaries–to carry out the vision, we won’t be a true representation of God. I’ve made the decision that I’m not going to tell someone to do something that I’m not doing. I’m going to rest. I’m going to take care of my temple. I’m going to make the changes that I need to make so that I can be pleasing to God, and he can help me carry out the vision. I want to hear him and do and live in my purpose. When God drops you on top of your pain, there lies your purpose, and that has changed my life.
When something is extremely pain–like a near-death experience–that means that you’re right on top of the purpose that God put you here for. Let me tell you how God had to deal with me on that. I’m 46. I was raised in a time when my parents said, “What goes on in our house, stays in our house. We don’t let everybody know our business. You have to put a strong front up because if you appear weak, people won’t trust you. They won’t want to do business with you.” Though I was raised with that thinking, now I’m an adult. I can change that way of thinking. God dealt with me and said, “This is your purpose, so I don’t need you to do what you would normally do. When people look at you, they see one thing, but I need you to speak out because I need them to see me. I need them to see the work that I’m going to do and how I deliver you because so many of my children are doing the same thing that you were doing. I’m charging you with speaking out.”
That was the hardest thing. Trust me in this moment. I have never felt so sure about something than what we’re talking about right now. As I began to educate myself, I see that 1 in 4 people self-diagnosis. Over 60% of those self diagnoses are wrong. You have to realize that the Internet is not the gospel. You have to know the question to ask the Internet. If you can’t ask the correct question, your answers will be questionable. Now, you’re stressed (over your incorrect conclusion), buying over the counter remedies that are just applying a bandaid, and getting worse. You must wake up.
Make the distinction between “a” vision and God’s vision. Proverbs 29: 18 says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish…” It’s talking about the revealed knowledge of God. What is he revealing to you about him, about you, about the life that you should be giving yourself to? What has he put you on this earth to do? Go hard after that. Part of it is owning businesses and having the wealth to invest in each other and in the kingdom, but you have to be clear about where your vision is coming from.
We’re so distracted. Everything is at our fingertips. I want to encourage you to shut everything off for just one day. That day needs to be your day of rest. You need to completely unplug. Hear some birds chirping, be one with yourself so that you can think. If you’re constantly surfing social media, on the Internet, or watching your favorites shows or entire seasons, unplug. Give yourself priority. I’ve never been more serious about anything in my life. In that quiet moment, so much can be revealed to you, but if you do not take the time to be still, you will never hear the promise. You will never hear the next step. You will never understand where the open door is coming from because you’re distracted by the trappings of the world.