I had an unexpected collapse in Maryland: my lower back rebelled. Bending lifting and turning stressed my back muscles into rebellion. OTC’s reduced or masked the pain – but the pain often broke through, taking my breath away; spasms stopped even the simplest movements. It surely felt like something at my core snapped and I had to surrender completely to the couch and the care of others.
For a recovering control freak, this was not my idea of a good cure. But pain breaks the grip of even the most determined controllers. Rest and heat, though, reined in the rebellious muscles.
And I discovered that prayer can break pain’s grasp. From my granddaughter’s prayers, to a former pastor’s prayers, my husband’s prayers – and my daughter’s, mercifully, the pain subsided. (James 5:17-20)
That bout also showed me again how unproductive self-absorption is. Just when I settled down to enjoy a pity party, God brought to mind others coping with extraordinary afflictions; recalling their battles was a great short-circuit to my pain! What is a muscle spasm compared to the convulsions people in Haiti and Chile endure? Or, what has been my limited discomfort compared to my friends’ battles against cancer and terminal MS?
If it is true, as the Latin proverb declared, “In time of sickness the soul collects itself anew," I am renewed, and relieved; I am again upright and moving – enjoying the breezes that may yet do in those pear trees.
“God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks to us in our conscience, but shouts in our pains: It is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world.” (C S Lewis - The Problem of Pain)