I have spent my life in pursuit of many things.
1. An athletic varsity letter jacket in high school.
2. A college degree.
3. The love of my life, who graciously consented to be my wife.
4. A career that provided financial security and impacted others in a positive way.
5. The blessing of being a parent.
6. Unconditional love and acceptance.
7. Significance. What will I leave behind that will last?
Yet at the same time I was chasing these things, God was always pursuing me.
He has allowed me to see what was fleeting and would not last.
He has created an instinctive craving for meaningful relationships in me.
He has authored a desire for my life to have meaning and significance.
He has let me experience the wonder of his affection and pursuit.
I will never understand the love of the Father that would run toward his creation for a relationship. But I am grateful.
What if we binge read the Bible like we watched a TV show on Netflix?
What if we fed on God’s word like a hungry man at an all you can eat buffet?
What if we spent as much time with God in prayer as we do on social media?
What if we invested as much of our heart in the reality of His Kingdom as we do in the latest reality show?
It’s going to hurt. This is a good sign.
It’s going to hurt some more. This is a sign that it is working.
Small movements are a big deal. Muscle groups have atrophied due to inactivity. They have to be coaxed back awake. And the muscle groups are just as grumpy as a teenager who overslept.
It’s natural to find that you have protected parts of your body that now are in rebellion. You have to retrain your body. Your body will not welcome this new activity.
Despite public perception, Physical Therapists do not love causing pain, they love restoring movement and wholeness.
Small steps proceed larger steps. Small gains lead to larger gains.
Did I mention it was painful yet?
I believe the first physical therapist was probably named “Uncle”.
To a physical therapist resistance is not futile but useful in the recovery process. Resistance combined with muscular reeducation leads to healing.
In my recovery from neck surgery there have been several mountains to climb.
After the surgery, I had to learn how to get out of bed safely without straining my neck or falling on my face.
I had to adjust to wearing a neck brace twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. I had to learn to sleep on my back.
Eventually, I began to walk and exercise. I had to learn to scan ahead since the head brace kept me from looking down at my feet.
I focused on building up muscle groups that had atrophied due to inactivity. Fatigue was an ever present enemy.
The surgeon began to gradually wean me off the brace six weeks after surgery.
Every week I would decrease the amount of time on the brace. Every week my neck would have to readjust to the additional weight and stress.
Every week I would increase the distance that I was walking in the morning. I scheduled my walks during the times that I was not wearing the brace.
At ten and a half weeks I retired the neck brace. I thought it would now be easy. Instead I began a fresh a season of physical and mental fatigue.
I begin a month of physical therapy on Tuesday.
In my recovery I have learned that it is not a sprint but a marathon. There are no shortcuts.
Healing, building endurance and strength take time.
There will always be one more mountain to climb.