I saw this devotional this morning and it blew me away and I needed to share it
SMALL STRAWS IN A SOFT WIND by MARSHA BURNS: 11.02.2014
Accept and embrace change as you do the seasons. The changes you face are inevitable whether you receive them with joy and expectation or with resistance and dread. Make it easy on yourself and be willing to move with My Spirit in freedom and fluidity. You can trust Me to cause everything to work together for your good. Let My glory be known in all you do, says the Lord.
Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose
This was the devotional today and indeed it struck a raw nerve. There has been so much adjustments going on this year that at times it feels like it is June yet is only the 42nd day of the year. When we think of adjustments we often feel that because they are needed they are at times easy to achieve. The adjustments I have faced this year have all been good in the long run yet very hard to do. The thing I never really thought about or realised is that good adjustment can be painful.
When I was 3 years old I was swinging on the climbing frame (I hear these days it is called monkey bars in some places) and fell head first to the ground 3 feet away. In our kindergarten, the ground was tarmacked for ease of keeping the kids clean I think, you can now guess what side of Nairobi I grew up in :-). Anyway, the only visible injury was a cut on my third left finger.
Fast forward 9 years later and I was in all sorts of seemingly inexplicable back pain. I could hardly sit, stand, run or walk for long periods yet just a year before that I was an upcoming athlete. About the same time my mum injured her back and went to see a chiropractor for rehab. One day after I had had a particularly bad week, she spoke to her doctor and explained what I was going through. Bless her heart, the doctor asked to see me and see how she could be of assistance.
Lo and behold, when I was examined I had an unnatural curve in my spine just under my shoulder blades. This seemed to have been there for a while and we couldn’t immediately figure out the cause. About two weeks later I remembered the fall when I was 3 years old and mentioned it to mum who spoke immediately with the doctor. After much consultation it was determined that indeed the fall was the cause of this injury. Remember on the outside there was no visible sign of injury but on the inside it was different. My doctor explained that I was a child when I feel, my spine was flexible and it absorbed impact by curving. Had I been older, the fall would have resulted in spinal injury.
I was immediately started on treatment and it took 4 years of regular chiropractic treatment to get my back restored into normal alignment. Yes, four years of excruciating pain, pain killers, hot water bottles, high density foam mattresses, strange pillows or cushions, flat shoes, doctor’s appointments, limited travel, etc. I even had to figure how to reduce the load of books I carried. Anyone who went through the 8-4-4 system of education then understands how hard this was because we carried loads of books from a very broad syllabus.
The adjustment though painful was good for me in the end as I was able to lead a more normal life after that. I quickly learnt what would aggravate the situation and what would reduce the pain. I adapted my life and make the best of it and later all was well. The main source of the pain and discomfort was that the orientation of muscles had to be changed. The curve in my spine meant that some muscles were in over extended positions while others where in shortened positions. As the adjustments were made, the shorter ones had to stretch to their right position and boy wasn’t it painful. Whole muscle groups had to adjust and then be eased into permanent position by exercise and rest.
Yet despite all the pain there were significant benefits. I could now attend to my studies without much pain or discomfort, I was no longer flat footed, buying shoes was easier, my posture was fantastic so my vocal range improved, oh and the pain was gone. It was amazing when finally after four years of treatment my doctor said I was good only needed to come in once a year for review. I haven’t had to have a review in over 10 years now.
Today I realise that this isn’t very different from life. In this season God will call us to move up, out and over into places that are good for us and out of places that are detrimental to us. The movement will mean leaving things that were previously important behind and moving into new levels of understanding and importance. In order to be in the right place we must:
1. Accept and embrace change: be at peace with it.
2. Realise that the changes are inevitable: it will happen whether we like it or not
3. Relax and be easy on ourselves: allow the Holy Spirit to make us fluid
4. Trust God: HE has our best interests at heart
This is indeed a walk of faith for me because there are necessary changes going on that I must make and I have indeed been struggling with some of them. I am now more determined to stand aside and allow Papa to do His thing and make all things work together for my good.
Have a wonderful, logic defying season with Papa.