The thing is this, I am a Christian, I love God and want to serve Him. More then 10 years ago I had an injury to my back that started this unpredictable, inconceivable chain of unfortunate events! The injury seemed like no big deal, I was in shape, a walking machine, gym rat, visiting nurse, single mom, young (er then I am now)..
you know... one of those people this stuff does NOT happen to.
So, here I am 13 ish years later, having spent not one day in the last 13 years without pain. I am a very slow learner as you are about to see.
I kept thinking, through the surgeries and injections and medicine and no medicine and physical therapy and sleepless nights and painful days that this was a path that God was taking me through, you know the story.. to be refined like fire and then to come out the other side and tell everyone the wise, wonderful things I learned going through the fire.
Last week I had a doc truthfully sit down and go over the MRI with me. Discs in the neck, arthritic joints, bone in and on nerves and ligaments, flunked EMGs.. it dawned on me. Finally. Refer back to the slow learner paragraph if you need to.
I am not going through the fire, I am going to live in the fire for the rest of my life on earth.. unless I have a miracle of healing.
My ministry and serving is not going to start when the pain is in the lessons from the past segment of my life, it is either going to be in the here and now while I live with unquenchable pain, or it is never going to be.
When my daughter died, I did not learn my lessons, go through the grief and then get her back when I learned how to help others. When my daughter died (5 yrs old) she stayed dead. 35 years later, she is still dead.
I think that is a lesson we Christians need to be so much more honest about. We grow in the fire, and some of us live in the fire.. if we are going to live the purpose and life that God has for us, we will do it IN the fire. Daniel IN the lions den. Those three guys with the funny names IN the furnace. Not being interviewed the next morning while they drank iced tea and told about how much faith the now have... but IN the fire or lions den.. where those without special protection could not join them..
And so, I invite you to join me, you who know what it feels like and you who want to understand or help others who know what life in pain is like.
How appropriate my blog title now seems, even though it was so many years ago, it seems at times like just a minute ago I had a very different life, one I will most likely never experience again. Just out of reach. If I look in the right place maybe I will find it. Until the reality hits, it is gone, it has been a very long time. Hope?
My hope is not based on living without pain, but on living with it in a way that is joyful.