Tuesday, July 12, 2011

What the Doctor Ordered

For there is a time and a way for everything, even when a person is in trouble. Ecclesiastes 8:6 NLT

Earlier this summer one of Peter’s friends slid into second base. Although safe, she broke her foot in two places. Being sidelined for most of the season proved difficult for her since athletic competition dominated much of her life. She struggled with how to fill her days, her mind focused on getting back into the game. When her follow up with the doctor mid season finally arrived, she counted the minutes, anxious for the doctor’s release to play again. But although he confirmed progress, he ordered three more weeks in the boot. Her healing was not complete. She fought against tears on the drive home.

Recently, God used her situation to shed light on my own internal struggle. It’s been 7 months since Peter passed. I’ve spent the time writing, remembering, seeking counsel to help me process, grieving, and healing. I’ve maximized this season of freedom by traveling and visiting family and friends. But now that half a year has passed, I find my gaze shifting forward. I return to full time employment this fall after my three year hiatus of caring for Peter. Now that the plans are confirmed, the specifics identified, I’m eager to get back in the game.

From Peter’s friend’s situation, I recognized I too expected quick healing. And like her doctor, God’s timing did not match mine. Although eager to get back in the game, God declared I needed more time to heal. There remained more to process through.

How often do we try to get ahead of God? I fully understood my need for healing and recovery after losing my son. I fully appreciated what a gift this time has been. But the weight of waiting had worn me down. I wanted to move forward. Rather than fully trust God’s timing, rather than fully allow God alone to be my source of healing, I wanted to fight the lingering pain and grief symptoms with busyness, with distractions, with something to do. Isn’t that how our culture functions? When life gives you lemons, you make lemonade; which means you find something else to do!

So instead of racing ahead, I’m now trying to slow down, if not stop completely. I want to “be still and know that [He is] God.” Only God fully understands all the nuances of my heart, the subtle issues and fears that linger in the dark corners. Only God knows the full extent of the grip of grief. Thus, only he can know when all of the fissures and cracks and bruises to my life and my faith are healed. I choose to trust my great physician.

Friend, how about you? Are you pausing and allowing God to be your sole source and answer to your situation? Or are you racing ahead finding something else to lean on or something else to distract you from the pain? Healing takes time, and a full recovery requires a gradual return to activity to avoid the risk of repeat or greater injury. I challenge you to stop right where you are and press into God for the healing your situation requires. Be still before him and listen as he shows you areas to process. Allow him to reveal himself to you as the Almighty God he is. Only through him is complete healing possible.

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