One of my biggest fears right now by Travis Sharpe

I used to not understand people who suffered with chronic pain. Sometimes I would wonder if their aches and pains were “real”. Especially things like back pain that came with no visible injuries. I mean, why could they seem normal one day but then seem to have unbearable pain the next?

Today, I understand. I am now one of those people.
My diagnosis
About three years ago I began to experience a pain that I had never experienced before. This pain would sometimes “shoot” down my left leg. I didn’t have an accident. I didn’t pull a muscle. I had no injury to point to. But this new pain kept showing up.
I lived with it off and on for about two years. I didn’t go to the doctor. Finally, a little over a year ago, I made an appointment with the doctor. I was nervous about what was wrong but hopeful that it could be fixed.
The diagnosis- Sciatica. Evidently, I had muscles that would become inflamed and the swelling would pinch nerves and cause the pain to shoot down my leg. The Dr. gave me some exercises to do and a bottle of pain pills. Neither seemed to help.
How it hinders me
What made me finally go to the Dr. after two years? The crippling pain. The Dr. did help me to understand that lifting or anything strenuous is what was causing the inflammation. So that meant each and every time we responded to a natural disaster or held one of our resource clinics for the homeless, I went down big time.
I can remember one time in particular when we were in NYC ministering in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. One afternoon, with people galore and tons of work to be done, the pains overtook me. I can recall literally crawling into our RV, dragging myself up the steps and just laying there crying.
I was crying not only because of the unbearable pain, but also because there was so much work to be done and I couldn’t be out there doing it.
That scene has played over and over again and has become much more frequent. Just last month we were at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation with a wonderful group of friends serving the precious people who call that land home. I was crippled with pain each day by around 11 am.
With no real place to get comfortable, I had to lay in the floor of our cargo trailer just to get off of my feet. Sitting doesn’t even help when it gets bad.
Why I am afraid
I know we are not supposed to be afraid. I know that God can handle it. But I am human just like everyone else and this scares me.
I have now been to three doctors and tried three different medications. They’re not working.
In Just five months we will leave for the Philippines. We will live and work there for five months. There will be much to accomplish. I am worried that I will not be able to accomplish what I need to. I can’t help but wonder if they will think I am not a good servant when I avoid lifting things and doing other stuff that has proven to put me flat on my back.
I want to work hard while I am there. I am afraid this will hinder me to the point that they may not respect me as a laborer.
At the end of the day I am trusting God for this. I am going. I will press on. But I would be a liar if I said I was not afraid. I am just asking God to help me with my fears and do with me as he wills.
What are your fears? Have you ever been hindered by pain or something like this? Leave your comment below, I look forward to hearing from you.


  1. Have you tried shoes/inserts that address sciatica? What about TTapp excercises? Don’t forget to read up on the WaterCure. Inversion Tables have been known to provide relief…(we have one- I highly recommend trying it and the personal TENS therapy patches now available at drugstores) we will be praying for you.

  2. Edselle Balajadia says:

    hello preacher. I am having back pains before but it was’t that worst till I came here and had a fall while playing basketball. my back is hurting when i sit for quite sometime. I just wanted to share it. I am praying for you and your ministry preacher. Thank you for having a heart for the Filipinos. God bless you more

  3. Paula Eidson Hughes Coates says:

    Travis, I have had back pain since working for my father in the restaurant. Lifting heavy objects. To the place I could not stand up. Pain went down my leg. I to have that problem. Sometimes for weeks at a time. My father had just gone to a Chiropractor. He took me and I was instantly touch. He took pressure off the nerves no prescription rdrugs that are there to hide the pain. The Chiropractor told me to go home and lay down and take a Tylenol. I did and when I woke up I could not feel any pain. My father never believed in Chiropractor but after going to one one he was a believer. Research your local Chiropractor and find one that has been in practice for a while. I have been to Dr Stienel in Augusta for a very long time. I do not go now because I am in an Electric wheelchair all the time. But not because of my Sciatica,

  4. Lana Byrd says:

    Travis, I too have this problem and it got so bad recently that I went to see Dr. Jeffery Cole at Below Chiropractor in Cullman. It hurt so badly to walk before I went, but after the first appointment I was able to walk without pain when I left. It took a couple of visits but helped tremendously!!! My brother has the same issue too and he has to go to his chiropractor when it happens to get relief.

  5. My son had a bad back injury that required surgery. He has been left, like you, with the nagging on and off back pain. His doctor told him to take one ibuprofen in the morning and one at bedtime. It helps keep the inflammation at a minimal. He says it really helps. I have degenerative back disease and have had to have two of my disc fused. I had a Spinal Neuro Stimulator inserted in my back and it does wonders. I felt your pain in your blog and we’re going to add that specifically to the prayer list. And we’ll pray that by reaching out to others, God will send some answers through others. Patsy

  6. I am so sorry you suffer this pain, and as you friends have said, chiropractors are a great help at not just relieving pain, but healing. There is a natural herb called Boswellia that is like a miracle for relieving inflammation, its cheap and NO side effects, just take enough. It worked for me and is working for my friends–2 every 2 hours till you get relief, and then 2 twice a day and when the pain is gone, quit for awhile and don’t be afraid to start taking them again. God bless you , I do so appreciate the work that you do for the Lord.

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