As the morning light crept in, I scanned my body, hoping the pain would somehow be gone today.  But no, it was still there, this menace that entered my life suddenly, taking me down like a wrecking ball in a few short weeks. 

I was only 50 years old but my body was wracked with inflammation and pain.  I could barely walk, self care was a challenge because I couldn’t make a fist with my hands and the pain made quality sleep a thing of the past. 

And I didn’t know what was causing it.  

My life was careening out of control, my dreams for the future were shattered.  

This was my introduction to autoimmune disease and what would later be diagnosed as rheumatoid arthritis. A quick visit with Dr. Google revealed some alarming facts: no known cure, intense pain, progressive degeneration and deformation of joints, shorter life expectancy and a litany of harmful side effects from pharmaceutical treatments.

Not exactly the future I had in mind.

I was fortunate to have a family doctor who suggested that while waiting to see a specialist, I could try eliminating some foods which are common triggers of inflammation.  Within five days of removing these foods from my diet I had about fifty percent less pain, convincing me that food could help me heal. 

Being an engineer, I naturally applied engineering problem solving skills to my health problem: researching, applying, testing, retesting and graphing my results. Nothing but complete commitment to healing was acceptable.  I had setbacks, of course, but would reset the compass on my healing journey and just keep going.  

I also collected stories of other people who had healed from this illness.  I read books by doctors who helped people heal.  I watched documentaries about healing.   The only thoughts I would let enter my mind were those of healing. 

Hal Elrod’s book, The Miracle Equation: The Two Decisions to Move Your Goals from Possible, to Probable, to Inevitable, is about using an equation to make goals become reality.

The words “miracle” and “equation” are not two words one would normally expect to be combined.  Being an engineer, I love formulas and equations. The logic and balance sit well in a right-thinking brain. In contrast, the word ”miracle” belongs in the left brain: can’t explain it, not logical, based on faith. 

Hal brings logic and faith together in beautiful harmony in his Miracle Equation. The equation is:

Unwavering Faith + Extraordinary Effort = Miracle

Like the best equations, this one is beautiful in its simplicity.  First develop unwavering faith that a goal is possible, then maintain extraordinary effort, even in the face of obstacles, until the desired outcome is achieved.  

As I read about the Miracle Equation, I realized that without actually calling it that, I had been applying this formula to my own health challenge with rheumatoid arthritis. I’ll call it the Healing Equation and it looks like this:

Develop unwavering faith that healing will happen + Maintain extraordinary effort until healing happens = Healing Miracle

The first part is mindset, the belief that healing is possible. The second part is to keep up the extraordinary effort in food and lifestyle choices until healing happens. Both parts of the equation are necessary for healing.  Apply both parts of the equation and healing is “possible, probably, inevitable” as Hal says.  

In my own healing path, maintaining unwavering faith was easy because that was the only belief I would accept for my future, reinforced by examples of other people who had healed using food and lifestyle. Maintaining extraordinary effort in these food and lifestyle changes was more challenging, especially when there were setbacks, but consistent effort created healing and eventually I regained health and vitality. Healing was inevitable.

Who would have thought math could help me heal?  

Can you apply the Miracle Equation to a health goal in your life? Seek out success stories to help you develop unwavering faith that your goal can be achieved. Follow through by maintaining extraordinary effort in food and lifestyle changes and you will be successful too.  This is the best kind of math!