The times are very busy these days and I find more work than daylight. Being in the kind of work that should look like you are at peace and inner contentment, almost oozing restfulness, so that people don't feel like they are a hinderance and will approach you, I feel like I am failing that these days.
I have enjoyed working this summer because it's a different speed and it leaves you with more room to try different, or new things with people and I've enjoyed that a good deal. What I haven't enjoyed this summer is learning to live with pain. I'll talk more about this some other time, but this summer, pain in my back and legs has come to live with us. Muscle pain is no problem for me, I can live with that for a long time, but this is kind of a nerve pain that comes when it will and stays as long as it wishes. It's the piercing and surprising nature of this pain that is breathtaking in its effect. Of course being tired only makes it worse, and, thank God, it mostly goes away when I am able to lay down, but its effect on me surprises and frightens me just a bit.
Sitting with people and becoming unable to hear them because the pain grows in my body, feels a harsh blow to what I do. Suddenly wondering if I can even stand for twenty minutes while I talk on a Sunday becomes a concern. Even, and possibly the most difficult, is standing and talking with another person. It becomes such a difficulty and distraction.
I've never had to experience this before and for that I have been very grateful. Even before the pain came to visit, I was keenly aware that I was blessed. But through this time I have been learning a few things.
Pain makes you think through your day, your life, your routines, because they may need to shift because of your inability to accomplish them any longer. This sucks, being limited I mean. And changing your life patterns.
Pain is very tiring. I find myself sneaking away just to sit down a bit, or better yet to lay on my back and let the pain settle for a few moments. Then up and go again. I'm more tired these days than I should be.
Pain creates a new dependance on God that I never had before. This summer I've had to pray a prayer I've never had to pray before, "Lord, please give me the strength to make it through this next bit of my day." I've never had to pray that because my physical strength has always been enough. Now I find I am asking for that more and more. That's kinda cool though. It reminds me how much I need his strength.
Seasons are shifting though. For the farmers who are moving into harvest or the kids who are going back to school, the times are changing. I've learned a great deal this summer, and I hope and pray that this pain will take it's leave, and I can move into a full Autumn as well.
Grace and peace.
From the Field.