someday i’ll get around to writing a post explaining what’s been going on with all my doctor visits and why that’s so hard for me, but today isn’t that day.
today is the day i tied a bow around the lesson God’s been trying to work into my spiritual heart while my physical heart has been sick.
the most necessary backstory details to understand the story i’m about to tell:
-my heart/lungs/blood sugar have been screwed up for five months. i’m not dying, but running has been a bit of a struggle.
-the only thing i’m known for at CIU, besides being the girl who works in the caf every day, is all the sports i play.
this is also sort of continuing the idea i wrote about here, though you can understand this post without having read that one first.
a couple weeks ago, my melting pot of symptoms had stumped yet another doctor, and i was getting more frustrated than ever. next cross country practice, i once again had to drop out of the workout after the first 200 meter sprint because my chest hurt and my arms were numb.
sitting on the ground watching the rest of the team do what i love is hard. i’d been getting better at being ok with not being ok, but i realized that day that it was only because i was assuming i’d be better someday. like when i have the flu and don’t complain about lying on the couch drinking gatorade and eating crackers, because i know i’ll be ok in a few days.
i sat there and wondered, what if i never get back to where i was? all the doctors have said for sure is that i’m not dying of anything. i’m able to go about my normal life; the only problems i have are with running. plenty of people would kill to have it that good…what if this is as healed as i’m going to get?
i shook the thought off and reminded myself, “i’ll still have soccer.”
of course i shouldn’t have mentioned that, because that night at soccer practice, my heart went off to the races, i lost all feeling in my arms, and my chest got so tight i could barely move.
sitting out of cross country is hard…sitting out of soccer is unbearable.
i focused on pulling out the grass in front of me so that i wouldn’t cry, and started praying hard.
“God, i can handle it if you take away running. but please, you can’t take soccer from me.”
i tried to think of a happy thought to distract myself with like i had earlier, but this time i couldn’t.
“if i lose soccer, i’ll have nothing left.”
and ever so patiently, God whispered, “you’ll still have me.”
while that was comforting, i was still too focused on the problem at hand. “this is the only claim to fame i have!! without sports, no one will know who i am.”
“do YOU know who you are?”
his first answer had been somewhat predictable, but this one totally caught me off guard.
“i’m the runner that smiles all the time. i’m the tough little goalie that jumps around when we win.” i felt the way i do when someone’s asked me a question and is waiting for me to get the most obvious answer. and the more i thought, the more i realized i wasn’t saying who i am. i was saying who people see me to be.
but no matter what else i am, i’m first and foremost God’s child. if i’m nothing else, i’ll still be that.
and even if i have nothing, i still have everything as long as i have God.
just like people are, my ability to run is just another gift from God. it’s something God wants me to enjoy and be thankful for, but it isn’t a need. if he takes it away, i’ll be okay; all i need is him.
i’ve been getting the hang of trusting this, but it really hit home for me this morning in chapel.
see, not being able to breathe has made me not able to sing. which for a long time made me feel like i wasn’t able to worship.
but God slowly started turning my heart around.
i stopped focusing on the fact that i couldn’t sing, and started listening to what was being sung. instead of thinking about the song i wished i could sing along to, i thought about who i wished i could sing about.
now, i think i’ve more truly worshiped the past three weeks than i have the past three years worth of chapels.
then this morning…i was suddenly able to sing again. i didn’t even realize it until we were halfway through Enough; i was thinking about how God actually is more than enough for me now, and then i thought “well God, i was fixing to say thanks that i don’t need to sing…but i can sing. why’d you do that? i would have been okay if you’d never let me again.”
as soon as the words left my head, i realized “OH. that’s why, isn’t it?”
when you’re content with only God, that’s when he starts piling on the blessings.
because if he’s the only thing you need, then instead of being distracted by extra things, you’ll be able to see them as what they really are: good things from a good God who loves you, not reasons to forget God, but reasons to thank him and praise him even more.
and if he never gives you anything else, well, that’s okay too. because either way, God is enough.
is God really enough for you? or are you thinking “all i need is God and[insert important thing here]? if God took that from you tomorrow, would you still be content?