Oftentimes, we realize the biggest blessings when we are stretched, surprised and experience pain.
My past week has certainly followed that path… A week ago yesterday, I spent 10-11 hours in back surgery and woke up to a world with all new kinds of pain and frustrations. There was pain in sitting up. There was pain in coughing. There was pain in laughing. There was pain in, well, everything.
Over the next few days, things quickly changed and I’m now able to get up and walk around and do a few things for myself. But there is still pain in standing. There is pain in walking. There is pain in getting up and down. I have to wear a back brace. I can’t lift anything. There are all kinds of frustrations and struggles built into my day.
But since coming home from the hospital on Thursday, I have felt overwhelmingly blessed. And I’ve learned that I more quickly recognize blessings when they’re couched in a little pain.
Here’s just a few of the ways I’ve seen God’s hand in my life…
1. More than typical time with my family! Surgery and recovery has forced my schedule to change and I haven’t left my house in the past 117 hours. That number is growing as you read this and by being forced into a new schedule, God is blessing my family with unexpected time.
2. The best Easter message ever! For the first time ever, I sat in my house instead of going to church. (And it just about killed me. 🙂) But, with strict orders to rest and stay home, I just wasn’t able to make it. So when my family was faced with the dilemma of “what to do for church,” my son jumped up and said, “I’ll preach!” And he preached the best Easter message I’ve ever heard… Jesus rose from the tomb, met the women in the garden and met Peter on the seashore. Short, simple, no frills, but the absolute highlight of my weekend! So proud of him!
3. Amazingly supportive community! We’ve had an incredible community swelling around us to lift us up and carry us through a difficult time. Sometimes I fall in the trap of feeling like “I serve everyone else” and forget that it’s appropriate for me to ask for help too. So, to all of you who have blessed us with prayers, cards, meals and gifts, WE LOVE YOU!
4. Experiencing God’s power first-hand! I am so much stronger and healthier today than I was a week ago. And the ONLY explanation I have is this… Our God is a mighty healer, a great physician and a comforting counselor!