I think I have a vague idea of what it is like to feel disabled. That is, with a recent back injury, I feel sidelined in a big way. For the past two days, I have been barely able to walk due to mega-pain in my back and right hip. I have no idea what I am going to feel like moment to moment. The only thing I can do is push myself to continue moving through my day as usual and try not to feel sorry for myself. One thing I tell myself is, “The world will never know the pain and humiliation Jesus suffered for us all, and this is but a small measure of what He might have felt.”
Pain is waking up feeling okay in the morning, followed by scream-inducing muscle spasms. I am to blame, at least partly. My humiliation is twofold: One, that I got this way as the Car Accident Queen (pass me my scepter, will you?), and two, my injury is a result of pushing my sweet mother in a wheelchair up a huge hill. In comparison to the sufferings of Jesus, I look like a Twinkie. Can I get an extra scoop of Chocolate Chip with this pain? How about a gigantic piece of chocolate cake to go with my self-pity?
OK, first off, I must confess that I have never been an athlete, although I do work out regularly, make an effort to eat right, and take lots of vitamins. Unfortunately, those habits are no match for upward creeping weight and spinal disc problems, so the fight is on: to avoid surgery, I must reduce my heft to a number my spine can tolerate. If the ladies on TV can do it, so can I, only my secret weapon is God. The only thing I need to do is ignore the images of perfection shoved in front of my face 24/7 of ladies that probably eat nothing but potted plants, mainline coffee, and exercise non-stop. Of course they look good! Those ladies never eat and can’t pass up a mirror. If I looked like them, I’d probably be the same way. (Kidding!)
So that’s my problem? I care about others first before myself? No, if that were true, I would have thought about how my daughters will remember this episode: Their mother, lounging on the couch all day, needing help to lift a feather, and unable to empty the dishwasher without screaming in pain. I would have passed on the pizza, and cooked something nutritious instead. I would have spent the extra time on the treadmill instead of giving up and going home.
Wait a minute! Do I sound as if I could have somehow had the power to avoid this pain on my own, as if I have the power to control how the world spins on its axis and the sun rises each morning? Do I sound as if, for one tiny moment, I can predestine my own destiny? (Imagine finger-shaking here)…. Or maybe, just maybe, God has a plan. Only He knows if I am going to wind up in a wheel chair or running marathons. I can do my best on every front, but only He understands and can foresee the events that will ultimately shape my health, my future. Sure, I can do what I can, eat right (rats, no cake and ice cream!) exercise, but it all might be for naught, if God thinks my situation could glorify Him and point others to heaven. In that case:
Pass the Twinkies!!!!