A Reluctant Learner

“Maybe it’s time you thought about what God is trying to teach you in this, Kir”

Jon boldly spoke those words to his feisty wife this morning and I absolutely hate it how he is always right.  And I hate when he tells me what to do.  Especially when he’s right!   🙂

Sometimes I really wonder what in the world God is doing in my life, mostly in difficult situations. 

Is this loving discipline from Him?

Is this just a crappy scenario that God is going to use to (hopefully!) bring beauty?

Does God have his hand in this at all, or am I just over-spiritualizing EVERYTHING?

The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.  For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God.  1 Corinthians 2:11

For the last five months I have had a very small, seemingly minor injury that has managed to affect every area of my life.  But it’s such a stupid injury. It is so insignificant, nothing detected on an MRI or X-Ray, and not even very high on the pain scale.

But it JUST WON’T HEAL.

I have modified my lifestyle greatly and painstakingly.  I quit running completely.  I won’t even take the kids on walks.  I modified my housekeeping and time standing on my feet in the kitchen.  I ice.  I stretch.  I am shelling out mucho dinero to see a physical therapist.  Worst of all I am wearing my gym shoes with orthotic inserts all the time which has seriously cramped my style.

This morning during our church service we ate breakfast together outside, under the Tucson morning sun, then after some prayer and singing, we spread out over the neighborhood and the school across the street to pick up trash, do yard work and prayer walk.

Except for me.

I stayed put.

My discouragement has been growing and growing and growing and growing lately.  Perhaps because the distraction of the Holiday Season is over, or because the desert spring is begging me to come running, so simply because I am tired avoiding all parks, zoos and walks with my kids.

I know that people have bigger problems than me, plenty of others have more pain and worse diagnoses and yet I can’t deny the fact that this has changed both my physical life but also my emotional life.

12 What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us. 13 This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, explaining spiritual realities with Spirit-taught words.  2 Corinthians 2:12-13

After seeing my discouragement yet again this morning, Jon had the guts to speak these words.

“Maybe it’s time you thought about what God is trying to teach you in this, Kir

Here’s what I came up with:

1) I am not my usefulness.  I am not my usefulness.  I am not my usefulness.  I have this problem with not seeing my worth and value unless I am helping or providing something to someone.  If I am not keeping up at home, am I even worth loving?  If I just sit here while others do a service project, do I still have value in this community?  If I can’t run and do fun things with my kids right now, what good am I?

I know in my head the answers, really I do, but God has been actively working to make me believe them in the depths of my heart and soul.  Putting me on the bench for awhile might not be the worst thing in the world for me. 

2) Empathy is a gift.  It is really hard to manufacture compassion.  Although my injury seems so small and even trivial, it has led me to so many times of prayer these last few months for those in my life who are struggling with chronic conditions, devastating disease, and on-going pain.  I feel so blessed to have gotten to pray for them, and a new love has sprung in my heart for these people…a glimpse of the Love God has for them, I think.

3) Community is a Balm.  I may have only watched from the sidelines while other people busied themselves this morning, but they aren’t just ‘other people’ they are MY people.  I have people!  They love me and I love them.

4) Healing is slow.   Just because I have had some set backs and am not where I want to be, there is improvement if I am willing to see it and I can actually see the light at the end of the tunnel, it’s just a little further away than I hoped.  Sometimes healing is fast and furious and miraculous, but a lot of times it is grueling and long and tiresome, but no less miraculous.

5)  The Lord is my portion.  Amen.  If I never run again.  If I never get to wear cute shoes again.  If I can’t participate in service projects or 5ks or long hikes.  If this is my life, I still win.  The Lord is my portion, my inheritance, my prize.  That HAS TO BE enough.  And it is, and it is good, I just need reminding sometimes when the going gets tough.

I don’t always know what God is doing in setbacks and disease and pain and discouragement, in my life or the lives of others. but I am thankful for the promises of an active, intentional God.

14 The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit. 15 The person with the Spirit makes judgments about all things, but such a person is not subject to merely human judgments, 16 for,  “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we have the mind of Christ.  1 Corinthians 2: 14-16

Maybe it’s time you thought about what God is trying to teach you in this

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