Joni Mitchell is singing those lyrics in my head right now. It’s a common saying and one that rings true.
I just got my cast off a few days ago after having broken my ankle over seven weeks ago. Believe me, it was one thing I was very glad to lose! I had only been in my basement three times in the whole seven weeks. I have now decided to set up ‘shop’ down there (so to speak) just because I can. I’ve got my laptop, a comfy chair, and a bathroom close by. What more could I want?
Losing one’s mobility can be a challenge. The simplest tasks suddenly become impossible. (Like carrying your coffee to your favorite armchair…) It’s made me stop and think about how fortunate I am in light of what other people have to go through, sometimes for a lifetime.
I am reminded about an ordeal I faced back in 2008. I had eye surgery that had me off work for five months, and left me blind for two. I learned to do a lot of things differently, (like knit by feel) and actually appreciated the slower pace that I was forced to adopt. I had more time for prayer and reflection and I think I grew as a Christian because of it.
When my sight started to return, a friend helped me set up my computer using the ‘accessibility options’ for the visually impaired. I had missed writing so much and really wanted to figure out a way to get back to it. (I had continued journaling, but believe me, it is interesting trying to read what I wrote!) I started off with just a half hour at a time since the light bothered my eyes. The letters were so large that there were no more than twenty words on the screen at a time. Still, I persevered, and finished the last few chapters of a manuscript that I had been working on previous to the surgery. That manuscript became AND THE BEAT GOES ON, the first novel I contracted with a publisher a few months later.
When I look back at that time, I wonder at how I managed. Sometimes we don’t know the depth of our own tenacity until put to the test. I believe that God gives each of us supernatural strength beyond our own whenever we are asked to face situations that are too hard for us. It’s easy to forget those lessons when life goes back to normal, and to forget the One who pulled us through. It is my prayer that we will not take life for granted, but erect a memorial of remembrance to God for each of the times that he has been with us through difficult circumstances.