Monday, July 4, 2016

Whatever You Do, Do Heartily for God

While I feel relatively great following my second phase of breast reconstruction surgery, there is only so much healing one can do in a day. Some things we can't speed up, much as we'd like. I do three walks a day, but then crash on the recliner, and nap often in between those walks.

A neighbor, who didn't know I'd just had surgery said, "I noticed you are moving slower than usual."
"I just had surgery," I explained. "I'm not supposed to raise my heart rate."
"Ah. You be careful," he said kindly. I saw him surreptitiously watching me as I shuffled around the block. I think my bright knee-socks in 100 degree heat baffled him.

I moved slowly from shady spot to shady spot. Only very small portions of my walk need to be in the hot, direct sun. It was a little frustrating being unable to walk at a faster pace. I don't slow down easily. However, I want to heal and so I am being very careful to follow doc's orders.

Since I only have one set of compression shorts and socks, I have been wearing the same outlandish outfit the past three days. Bright rainbow knee-socks, with my blue shimmery sandals, and compression shorts with a modest skirt over them. It is a blistering hot season in NC. No one wears knee-socks in 100 degree heat. Except me.

Fortunately, Tuesday a second pair of shorts and socks arrive. I have to wear this compression get-up for a few weeks. Fun!

The nurse assistant who wheeled me down to my car following surgery overheard me talking with my nurse about art classes I teach.
"I thought you were an artist!" the assistant said as she pushed the wheelchair down the corridor.
We both glanced at my rainbow socks. I wonder what tipped her off?

Although recovery is going well, there are hard times. Like after I have rested in my recliner and go to stand again, the pain in my thighs nearly fells me. For the first few steps, it is pretty terrible, but then, they stop hurting. The doctor told me walking was the key to overcoming the swelling and pain in my thighs. Still, it takes a lot of strong talking to myself to get me to move from my painless lounging to a much less painless standing position. I know what I am about to endure, however briefly, and it would be much easier to just stay comfy and pain-free in my recliner.

So guess what that made me think about?

Sometimes we get too comfortable in our Christian walk. We do the basics, read a little Bible, pray a little, and go to church and even stay awake sometimes. However, are we following the treatment plan God has given us for a sick and broken world? Are we going and making disciples, are we glorifying God in our family, our work, our neighborhood? Are we visiting the sick, those in prisons, the widows, and the hungry? Are we sacrificially meeting the needs of those less fortunate than we? Are we protecting the innocent and the vulnerable?

It takes a lot of strength to overcome complacency, stand, and then walk where God is telling us to go. It often does first. It is unfamiliar, uncomfortable, and painfully awkward. However, I think there is no question that if we are resting in the Lord but not serving Him, we probably will not impact the world to His glory, and our own healing in God will stagnate.

I'd write more about this, but I need to put my full energy into talking myself to stand up now.


1 Samuel 12:24 

Only fear the Lord and serve him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things he has done for you.

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.

Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.

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