Jennifer in Macedonia

September 28, 2018


Healing is the application of love.

Before I start, I want to say, “Thank you!” toeveryone who has written me to express their concerns and wishes for a speedy recovery after my shoulder surgery. My shoulder had been bothering me off and on for a long time and even though I had done two stints of physical therapy for several months each, my shoulder never really got better. After putting it off for an embarrassingly long time, I finally got up the courage to get an MRI done so I could get a diagnosis. I learned that I had an impingement on my rotator cuff and possibly a tear.

On July 9th, I had surgery at Sistina hospital to remove the impingement. There was indeed a small tear on my rotator cuff, which could not heal properly because the impingement was in the way. My friend, Amanda Peck, helped me get to and from the hospital, understand the doctor’s instructions, and survive the first several days back home.

After two weeks of recovery time, I began my physical therapy. At times, the therapy felt more difficult than the actual surgery. God has been teaching me a lot through this whole process, so as something a little different from my usualnewsletter updates, I’d like to share with you the top ten things God has been teaching me through this surgery and recovery process.

~ Iyanla Vanzant

Center: Being dispatched from the hospital; Far left and right: Getting stronger through physical therapy


Jennifer’s Top Ten Lessons from Her Shoulder Injury

10. Getting a diagnosis can be scary, but it is still better than wasting time and money on solutions that cannot heal the root of the problem.

9. Sometimes loving yourself means seeking professional help.

8. God’s provision often goes before uswithout us even realizing it.

Acibadem Sistina, the hospital where I had my surgery and physical therapy sessions, is renown in this part of the Balkans and just happens to be a pleasant 30-minute walk from my apartment. And my friend Amanda, who had the time and good heart to take care of me my first few days after surgery, just happens to be an orthopedic nurse!



Top Ten Lessons Cont.


7. Sometimes the pain of the treatment is greater than the pain of the initial injury, but it will soon pass.

6. You are not going to heal yourself of 5 years of atrophy in 5 weeks of therapy. But you can make a lot of progress!

5. When a healthy muscle has been overcompensating for other weak muscles for a long time, it is going to take a while for that muscle to stop helping and only do its own job.

4. Some people will not understand yourhealing journey, and that’s okay.

3. Sometimes sharing your story of seeking healing inspires others to seek their own healing.

2. There is no need to be angry with myself. I can give myself grace for not tending to the root of my problem in a more timely manner.

1. I can also give grace to others who are (or appear to be) avoiding tending to the root of a problem in their own lives.


I hope this peek into my life blesses you no matter what stresses or problems you may be facing in life. And if, like me, you have problems you do not want to face, I pray God will give you the courage you need to face them with His provision.

If you would like me to pray for something specific for you, please do not hesitate to contact me. I love hearing from my readers! Please continue to pray for courage, growth, and healing for me, for the United Methodist Churches in Macedonia, and for our global Church family.

In Him,


Life Goes On…

Sadly, I was unable to be a part of the summer youth camp this year due to my surgery and the recovery process. However, I heard that those who were able to attend had a wonderful time of fellowship and growing deeper in their faith. The theme for the campwas “Жива Вода” or “Living Water” and featured presentations by Dejan Vasilev from here in Skopje, and Marinko Zafirov from the church in Kochani.

Please click on the picture below to watch a short film Danail Ristovski created showing highlights from the event.