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Roxanne Smith

Featured on Woman to Woman on April 23, 2011.

Roxanne Smith earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Iowa, graduating summa cum laude. After two years of graduate school, she attained her Graduate Certificate in Physical Therapy, also from the University of Iowa. She then worked as a physical therapist for five years in both inpatient and outpatient contexts before becoming disabled by severe back pain.

Smith and her husband Andy spent years looking for help. She endured four major spine surgeries and numerous traditional and alternative treatments in an attempt to alleviate her life-altering pain. Since modern medicine delivered no lasting relief, she has constant and severe disabling pain that forces her to lie down more than 20 hours a day. With the birth of their child she assumed the role of "Mom" -- disability and all.

In 2008 Smith's book Struck Down; But Not Destroyed: Finding Hope in the Maze of Suffering was published. The book chronicles her transition from "successful student, athlete, musician, physical therapist" to an invalid "horizontal woman" who lies down most of the time to manage excruciating back pain due to degenerative disc issues. Trusting God required a different leap of faith than faith that asks for healing. This kind of faith transcends circumstances. Faith enables a person to believe God is loving and good, even when circumstances are harsh. When times are better, it's easier to believe God is good, but it requires less faith, according to Smith.

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