Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Lent Day 7: Thankful for sickness and health

"That's as far as I can reach." Our daughter lifts her right hand to elbow height. Her other shoulder and elbow are slightly more mobile but she hasn't had full range of motion for years.

Kirsten flew home to Austin today after spending three months with us. She endured foot surgery and the recovery amid arthritis flares. Every storm heralds its immanency with swelling and stiffness; Seattle had plenty of winter storms this year. W and I watched K regain her footing as she protected her other painful joints. Hopefully the warmer weather of Austin will be kinder to her than the grey brutality of the Pacific Northwest.

Some of us suffer for a day, for a week, or for a lifetime. Many become so accustomed to pain that they cannot remember a day without it. Our daughter is among those.

We've cried to God for help for fifteen years, since she first was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. I wept at her bedside last year as she groaned through the sores that erupted over her body and inside her stomach. W sat with her for hours as her foot lay immobile in its post-surgery cast in December and January. Oh God, when has she suffered enough?

W and I are so grateful for parents who still enjoy strength for each day. We thank God for our own health and the sound bodies of our three sons and their wives. We gasp with pleasure at the normal stages of our new grandchild. Thank God for healthy bodies!

Somehow, the grief of watching someone we love has made good function all the sweeter. We are glad that Christ bore the brokenness of soul and body on the Tree. We trust that at some point he will turn to Kirsten to say, "It is enough" and apply the hard-won healing to her body. In our view, sooner would be better than later.

Lord have mercy on Kirsten and all those who suffer today.

Read more:
*Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:22-26 NIV 

*Psalm 31:10-20, Exodus 6:13-7:24; Matthew 20:1-16

*Man born of woman is of few days and full of trouble. Job 14:1 (NIV)

*It is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness, it is raised in power. 1 Corinthians 15:43

Moravian Prayer: Father God, help us follow in the footsteps of our Lord Jesus who was born, remained sinless and was raised in the power of your glory. Amen.

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