Well, as life would go, another setback has put me on the sidelines once again. This is the never ending story of my life for the past 3...almost 4 years. Just when things start to turn a corner I get dealt another blow. This time to a tendon in my foot.
I started running about a month ago and fell in love. I fell so hard that I went a little run crazy, increasing my distance and speed too quickly. At least, that is what all the webMD sites tell me. "Increase load by 10% a week." I knew this yet I thought I could handle more. How wrong I was. I was increase my loads by 20% a run which I was doing almost every other day. So much for weekly increases at a slow and steady pace. I threw caution to the wind and now I am paying the price.
Unlike my other setbacks this has been self inflicted. Certainly not intentional, but still, the consequences have been the same. I brought this on myself and now I must pay the price by putting into practice the recovery principle of rest.
This may have been self inflicted and a training mistake on my part but there is no doubt in my mind that God has a much needed lesson to teach me in all of this. "Rest" has never been my strong suit. I'm a doer. A goer. I like to be on the move. I don't like to sit still. I don't like to have a day where I'm not accomplishing things. Being a load drives me nuts. I am no good at being physically lazy. I don't have a job and I don't bring home big amounts of bacon, so in some sense people may call me extremely lazy. But I don't sit on my butt all day zoned out in front of the TV. I don't waste my time on the Kardashians. I like to make lists of things to get done so at the end of the day I can put big check marks next to my completed tasks. I like the feeling of a completion.
And I love working out. I love running. I love the feeling of setting a goal and reaching it - if not exceeding it. So this whole "rest," "limit physical activity," "abstain from running and weight bearing exercises on the foot" idea is driving me up a wall.
Two whole weeks of this?
Being overly concerned with my activity, limiting it and making it extremely low impact?
You said a whole, entire two weeks?...at least??
This was making me depressed and moody. How can I live like this for two days, let alone two weeks?
These questions plagued me until I pictured God sitting up in heaven, on his throne, just smiling. He knew I needed to be forced to learn how to rest.
He has been working on my resting skills for years yet there is still work to be done. I am, to say the least, a work in progress.
Now God is going to use this latest set back to raise the bar. Can I be content when I am grounded, stalled out, put on the sidelines and told to hang tight - literally? Just when things started to look like they were going to turn around, when I thought my life was finally going to take off, a step backwards. Will I be able to rest in the midst of this latest storm cloud?
This torn tendon in my foot is the latest barometer of my spiritual health. It will revel the status of my heart and who really holds it. Am I still trying to control my emotions and grasping for the steering wheel of my life or am I surrendered to God, finding peace in his presence and unshakable power?
My reaction to this set back can go in a number of different directions. Some of them will only cause a wall to build up between me and God. I can grow depressed and frustrated, lamenting my current lot in life. Or I can choose to take this time and let it grow me further. I can take my time stuck on the couch to read more of God's word and write more about what he is doing in my heart.
I can take what might be seen as a devastating blow and turn it into a time for blossoming. The choice is mine and mine alone. This is the challenge and beauty of free will. At every fork in the road we have a number of options when it comes to which road to travel. Not every road will honor God and draw us closer to him. The right road to take is always the road that moves us closer to the heart of God. A journey down that road will never disappoint and time on that path is never wasted.