Saturday, January 24, 2015

Minor Inconveniences plus Worry... :(

I don't mean this in an arrogant way at all.
We've all been sick at our house, one at a time.  My husband was diagnosed with bronchitis this past Tuesday and that was a blessing.   The medicine is working and he's up and around again, back at work, missing only two days - and he really, really needed the rest even before he got sick.
I ended up going to the doctor Friday - nothing major at all, just a sore throat, sinus stuff, mild fever, enlarged tonsils - not even serious enough to have a name!  :)

I opted for cortisone pills instead of a shot and realized that was a mistake about 2 a.m. this morning while I was trying to keep down my sixth pill for the first day plus my second antibiotic.
And I thought about loved ones who have gone through chemo and I found I could give thanks for 8 small pills in 10 hours.
So first came my (naturally) whiny thoughts: my stomach is messed up... I'll never get to sleep... yada yada yada
And then the belated recall of how others whom I love have suffered tons more with far less "poor me" thoughts and I was humbled.
So my thoughts were back  on track - being thankful for what I had (and didn't have) and putting everything into proper perspective.
And then my thoughts took a nose dive again... If I can't handle a little cortisone and an antibiotic, how would I ever handle chemo? All the "what ifs" came crowding into the spare room like gremlins to keep me company. "You know you aren't getting any younger..." "Most people get cancer sooner or later... " Yada yada yada.

So first I had rank ingratitude and some over dramatization of my basically comfortable situation. (As long as I can sit up and read, I'm really okay).
Then back on track with thanksgiving and thinking of others.
Then nosediving into fear of the future - when God only gives us grace for today.
And the "poor me" as well as the "what ifs" are really basically sin. They are the opposite of having faith in God.
I read somewhere - John Piper, I think - that worry is a sin in that it's like having muddy rain splashed on your windshield. Suddenly you are navigating along with low visibility, barely able to see where you are going by faith.  Sin clouds our vision.

Corrie ten Boom agrees. In her stellar little book - the best one she wrote in my opinion - called Jesus is Victor (part of an anthology called Corrie ten Boom: Her Story), she said this:
"Worry is Sin"
"I had to learn that worry is sin before I could get rid of the worry. First I tried to "fear not" as an act of obedience. It was as successful as trying to kill a lion with a toy gun.Then I began to learn the secrets. First you must ask forgiveness for your sin of worry. Then you need to accept the cleansing of the blood of Jesus. Finally you need to let God fill you with the Holy Spirit. When you are filled with the Holy Spirit, the spirit of fear will flee, forced out by power and love and a sound mind."
In another place in this little gem of a book, she talks about how she had two speaking engagements in Canada. A woman volunteered her husband to drive Corrie to Ottawa, not knowing that her husband had been drinking and, as Corrie put it, it was not a little that he had enjoyed! The roads were icy and treacherous and as they began the journey the car was sliding from one side of the road to the other.
Corrie was worried as you can imagine. But they were driving at night, in the middle of nowhere, and she had no other alternative. Finally she told the Lord that she would never be able to speak at her next place if she continued to be tense and worried. She finished her prayer and then turned to the driver and told him she couldn't do the driving for him so she was going to sleep and leave it in the Lord's hands. The man agreed to her bargain smile emoticon. He drove. She slept. And when she arrived at her next meeting at 8 P.M., she was ready to speak for the Lord.
In times of great stress, that story comes back to me.
In times of minor stresses, I need it just as much.

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