Friday, April 9, 2010

Ow! Oooowwwww!!!


I don't like pain. It hurts me!

Monday night I returned to karate classes after a not-quite-three-year "sabbatical". Actually I was feeling quite brave and decided to tackle the kickboxing class before the karate class.

It was an intense evening.... I went in with a good attitude, knowing I'd be feeling pain the next day, but assured that, after a while, results will start showing.

I expected to feel a little stiff the next morning; but rather a full-blown migraine set in, accompanied with chills. I just couldn't get warm or get my head to stop throbbing. There were a few stiff muscles, but nothing too unbearable.

Wednesday morning I awoke to a pain-free head, but there was pain in my lower back and calf muscles, as well as pain in my stomach muscles. I shouldn't really use the word "pain" because, well, it wasn't unbearable, just extremely uncomfortable. It hurt. Every time I walked, or bent over, or stood up extremely straight, the boys would hear "Ow! Ow! Ow!". Jake kept saying I was faking it, but he forgets I'm an old woman now who hasn't seriously worked out in almost three years!

Wednesday night I decided to go to karate class to get the muscles loosened up. I had a wonderful class, and felt great afterwards. Still a little sore that night, and here we are at Friday and I'm still walking at times like a crippled-up ol' geezer, but.... here's the thing..... I KNOW the pain is going to subside over time. I KNOW this current pain I'm feeling is working for something good.... I'm going to feel better, I'm going to look better.

It is the same with the trials that we experience in our lives. The painful times can be excrutiating and sometimes feel unbearable while we're going through them. Those painful experiences hurt! They wear us down. They make us limp around for a while. We can't see an end to the pain.

I could not even BEGIN to start rhyming off the trials we've had over the last few years. Some of you are aware, some are not. Jon's health situation, his work situation, the "knife wounds" in his back, the situation with Blake's health (which will likely be a lifetime concern),...... numerous situations that you would just not believe......... (and no, I'm not going there so please don't ask, but I can assure you it would make for a very interesting movie!)..... Painful, extremely painful moments in our lives, which didn't just affect me and/or Jon but also our children, and will forever have an affect on us.

But, here's the thing.....

Those moments, those trials, those gut-wrenching, heart-breaking, pain-suffering, unbelievable experiences DID NOT break us in a negative way. Those moments hurt while we went through them, and truth be told, some of the memories of those moments still hurt and are painful to remember; but, we got through. We didn't stay in those moments.

The Lord has never promised us that we will not have trials. Look at good ol' Job in the Bible. He was a good guy, never hurt anybody, minded his own business, lived a good life and served the Lord whole-heartedly; but who on earth would ever want to experience what was forthcoming to him? Lost his children, lost his livestock, lost his home, lost his good health, lost his so-called friends, lost it all..... even his wife was giving him a hard time..... but, despite all of that, he remained faithful to God. And, just in case you don't know "the rest of the story", God blessed his faithfulness and poured blessings upon blessings upon blessings on him, restoring ALL, and in fact MORE, that had been lost.

Going through these last few years have shown me that it doesn't really matter what others "think" they know about us and our situation. We, to this day, are still putting some of the "puzzle pieces" together to get the full picture. But, it has shown me that my pride needed a little bit of 'shifting' by not worrying about what others think but rather letting go and letting God do His job in my life! It showed me that God will never let me escape His care and will always..... ALWAYS..... keep me sheltered under His wing.

I was broken in such a way that God was able to do some work. Now, don't get me wrong..... I'm still a "work in progress", but the trials have helped to put things into better perspective, get my priorities straight, and helped me to realize what and who are important.

Today in Bible Study someone made the comment that we are all at different stages in our lives, in our walks with God, and we need to be patient and not become easily frustrated, just as we don't want people becoming frustrated with us.

We also discussed the fact that what some people mean for our harm, God will use for our good, and that those who "dig a pit" for someone else to fall into will sooner or later end up falling into that pit themselves. (Check out the scoop on Haman in the Book of Esther in the Bible. He'll second THAT motion!)

When I mentioned to a young man at karate the other night about the sore muscles I was experiencing, he smiled and said, "What doesn't kill you will make you stronger!". I chuckled, applying that statement not only to my sore muscles but also to my prior (and current) trials..... those times didn't kill me, they've made me stronger.

I always have been confused in the past when hearing people say they were thankful for their trials. How on earth can you be thankful for a trial? Now I know you can be thankful because it helps you grow. I'm understanding that now. God makes all things work for good to those who love Him...... even in our trials......

And this "pain" that I'm experiencing with my physical muscles is going to work for my good as well. This temporary affliction is gonna pay off in the long run. You just wait and see.

My "Ow!" will one day be a relief sigh of "Ahhhhhhhhhhh....." in karate AND in my trials of life. Now I can say, "Thank you, Lord, for my trials!".

1 comment:

Dani said...

Does this mean that Chris and I have to push you around in a wheelchair tomorrow (whilst shopping for Springarama!!) ?

Too bad dad doesn't have a motorized one!