It would be nice to have options as it relates to trouble. But to tell you the truth, even with a multiple choice scenario, I’d choose None of the above Every. Single. Time.
Unfortunately it’s not a matter of if we’ll experience difficulties … it’s when. John 16:33 makes it clear,.“we will have trouble”.
I’m not sure if anything could have prepared us for the insurmountable losses, shortage of every day necessities and the lack of fellowship 2020 threw at us. Yet there was more.
The words in the Bible were blurred although not enough to raise concern. But when the stained glass windows concaved and disappeared in the center, I knew trouble was paying a visit.
A hole in the macular was the cause of the distortion. If the thought of inserting a gas bubble in my eye wasn’t enough, the recovery process was a bit overwhelming.
As the surgery approached, we prayed for a miracle. The morning of, we did the same. But the situation and the remedy remained.
Non stop had been my mode of operation. The diagnosis created an unexpected pause and then everything came to a screeching halt. God was demanding my attention.
Honestly, I believe my vision was distorted for a few reasons. And, God was about to get me all the way together.
Sit up straight. Shoulders back. Don't slump. Does this sound familiar? Studies say improving your posture helps maintain a stronger core. It enhances productivity and boosts our confidence and self esteem. The same is true when we align ourselves with God.
My posture for healing was different. 45 minutes out of every hour I drapped my body over a facedown chair. Busyness had created distance between the Father and I. Bowing my head was the prescription for my eye but, it was also the posture of worship and surrender that provided long overdue soul rest. I needed time to hear. Slowing the rush made space for beautiful conversations.
The first few days I couldn't see anything. It seemed as if my left eye was under water which caused a great deal of strain on my right eye. The best option was to keep both eyes closed or look down. My gaze was set in one direction. Isn't that what Hebrews 12:2 instructs us to do anyway? "Look to and fix our eyes on Jesus the pioneer and perfecter of faith."
Distractions have a sneaky way of easing into our lives. And before we know it, the volume of the world becomes more prevalent than God's Word.
Being intentional about a God focused gaze gives us the reset we need. Does it mean we don't partake in every day activities or responsibilities? Absolutely not. It's just means God is our center and first priority.
The doctor reminded..."I can perform the surgery but the healing depends on you...on whether or not you stay in position."
That week my face, neck, back, shoulders, knees and bottom ached. Finding a place of comfort was difficult at best. Yet I stayed. What I thought I had to do no longer mattered. Everything waited while I waited.
I could have gotten off the facedown chair at anytime but, I wouldn't have gotten the desired results.
Can we just be honest? Staying isn't easy. Sometimes receiving the things of God require more than we want to give. The process comes with undesirables like pain and extended discomfort that tempt us to call it quits before the work is complete. In these seasons it appears that everyone else is moving on with their lives while we remain stagnant.
But instead of bemoaning the wait, I changed my perspective. I used the 45 minutes to plan, listen and rest. Podcasts and sermons became a whole thing. During the 15 minute break I executed what I planned and then repeated the process over and over.
The renewed mindset made the wait take on a whole new meaning. Instead of having to wait, I was given the privilege of waiting.
As the days passed, the fluid decreased in size. On the last day of recovery I saw the bubble do a little dance in the center of my eye, float to the left and vanish.
We can't control what comes our way. There are places of uncertainty and times of indefinite waiting we all endure. But we can manage our responses. Adjusting our posture, staying in position and setting our gaze on the Father may or may not change our circumstances. But, it will cultivate a deeper relationship with God and that's what matters most.
Your Sister Friend,