Breathe in deeply.
Over the last six weeks, what with pneumonia, then bronchitis, and menstrual flow for 22 days (and counting) I’ve been struggling. Being as small as I am (58 pounds) with a twisted torso from scoliosis and weakened respiratory muscles – oh, and that whole spinal-muscular-atrophy-never-walked-can’t-move-my-arms-anymore thing – everything is just harder. I thank God for the improvements, truly, deeply, and pray that no more difficulties may come – all the while knowing that there are so many people out there who have it so much worse.
And I’ve been thinking… Through the choking on mucus, pain and bleeding, shortness of breath… Don’t I believe in God’s will? I have prayed that only God’s Positive, Perfect, Holy, Ordained Will be done. Not God’s Permissive Will, the things that aren’t part of His ideal plan, but that He will make work out for the best, but God’s Perfect Will, what He ideally wants. If being sick is exactly what God intends for the perfection of my life-never-ending, then so be it. God sees the Big Picture, which I cannot, as I’m stuck in the little details of the day – and the Big Picture is an exquisite Masterpiece.
Now, I say, “So be it” or “Thy will be done” – but, do I mean it?
If I mean it, then I should not only thank God for the times of improvement – pneumonia cleared up, the bronchitis gone – but also thank God for the new difficulties: the ongoing cramping, bloating that makes it hard for me to breathe and causes my heart to race, the loss of blood, the anxiety that there may be something terribly wrong in my reproductive system, whatever new cold might pop up. I should groan and nearly scream in pain, I should struggle for air, and I should say, “Thank You.” And I’m serious here. I’ve tried it, and I have to say, it’s much easier said than done. I believe in the principle, I believe it’s a good thing to do, to be grateful for God’s Perfect Will… But, it’s another struggle.
I am trying to learn everything that I can from this trial and these tribulations. I really do believe that there is a treasure here for me to discover, that there is richly useful knowledge and experience for me to gain. As a character said recently on a television program called Nashville, “Pain is valuable.” That’s true for country music writers, but it’s also true for all writers and artists. Perhaps, it’s true for every human being. I know it’s true for me. All of this will bring me closer to my Creator, into a more deeply and personal and intimate relationship with my Savior. Thus united and connected with God in my heart, I can then better be inspired and guided by the Holy Spirit to receive God’s love and wisdom and to be creative, to share the reality of Christ and the glory of God with others.
Being grateful for pain is extremely difficult and, being only human, I don’t know if I can really do it. But, there is another little lesson that I have learned in all of this, a practical one that is slightly easier to do, but no less important…
Even though it’s more difficult to breathe because my body hurts so much, I have to take good care of my lungs and stay healthy. So I have learned, and I continually remind myself, that, even when in pain, I must breathe in deeply. And this does feel something like gratitude…
That’s the lesson I’m sharing here in this post today:
Even when in pain,
Breathe in deeply.
© 2017 Christina Chase
Christina Chase View All
Although crippled by disease, I'm fully alive in love. I write about the terrible beauty and sacred wonder of life, while living with physical disability and severe dependency. A revert to the Catholic faith through atheism, I'm not afraid to ask life's big questions. I explore what it means to be fully human through my weekly blog and have written a book: It's Good to Be Here, published by Sophia Institute Press.
The double meaning of the word inspiration, which includes to breathe in, is very fitting here, because your words here, leading up to to the last, “breathe deeply” are an inspiration.
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I’m so glad that you picked up on the word play! We could say that I have been inspired to inspire – to breathe my life in deeply. Thank you for reflecting with me! Pax Christi
Well said I will say Amen to that. Christine another beautiful post. I ditto the person before his comment.
Well you know me I ditto. Sorry I just wanted to write something this is a quick note and are we going to bed. So I wish you well I hear you saying breathe deeply all breathe deeply that’s a beautiful message you know how I am short and sweet messages that is wonderful I’m so glad to hear from you God bless you I will write again soon God bless your family take care of in Jesus name amen.
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Wow, incredible. You are so close to God!
I don’t know how close I am to God… No closer than anyone else. Maybe we just need eyes to see and ears to hear and a willingness to open them… to take a deep breath…
Blessings, Christine. We are breathing in with you, we wide-worldChristian family members. And you are breathing out the Spirit in your writings. Teaching is hard, isn’t it. But you are are model of that for the rest of who try to teach in our own home-schooling or wider efforts.
You wrote, “Teaching is hard”… I’m going to be thinking about your words for a while, thank you for reflecting with me as always. I’m glad that we met, Albert.
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