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Careful What You Pray for

Christ crucified, crucifix, cross, wheelchair, disability, suffering, redemption, Catholic

When I was invited to write a post for my friends at Agnellus’ Mirror, I had no idea that God would give me the opportunity to put my money where my mouth is, so to speak.

During Lent, the Mirror is sharing reflections upon various images of Christ crucified. Reading this series has been one of the most thought-provoking and, yes, entertaining parts of my own observance of the season. With images of the Cross from Europe to Africa, and even from an American bedroom, the universality of Christ’s sacrifice and divine love is wonderfully on display, with words that touch the human heart. (Worth exploring from the beginning.) My own little contribution came in the form of a poem: Conform Me to Your Likeness, Lord.

Even as I prayed this prayer beneath the crucifix in my room, even as I set the poem down in words, I asked myself, “Do I really mean it?” The fact that I sent it out into the world means that I do mean it in my heart, even if I’m not mentally or emotionally prepared to live up to it. God seems to take me at my word, however. This week, my knee got tweaked badly in the daily routine of transferring me from wheelchair to bed. I say tweaked, but it was more like wrenched. It doesn’t take much to hurt my little limbs. (Maybe a torn meniscus? That’s what Dr. Internet suggests. Doesn’t really matter what it is, however, because I don’t do surgery and, anyway, it wouldn’t get me up and walking!)

Pain that’s worse when I sit, so lying down a lot, which means eating and digesting is more difficult. Everything is more difficult. This is the first time I have sat at the computer in days, and my knee is burning, building in sharp little pains, that I know will be worse when I lie down, with little relief unless iced. Until it hurts like mad again. At least, thank God, I don’t need to walk on it. Seriously! I keep imagining what it would be like if I were a dancer and this was a career damaging, whole life altering injury. This happens to people every day, with far worse consequences of longer impact. I pray they have supportive loved ones like mine. For I thank God — thank you, most generous and gracious God — I have two amazing, loving, self-sacrificing parents who go above and beyond in taking care of me every day, even more so on days like these. 

Okay, that’s enough for today. Without further ado, the post: Conform Me to Your Likeness, Lord

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.

7 thoughts on “Careful What You Pray for Leave a comment

  1. Dear Christina,

    I am so sorry to hear about your accident. Back when my hair was dark, I caught a girl’s immobile foot, lifting her from her wheelchair and causing her to cry out in pain. So easily done! As we were on the beach, intending to let her get into the water, pain relief was at hand. (Search for ‘Margate’ in Agnellus Mirror and you’ll see the next stretch of sand going East.) I hope your pain is subsiding now. And we look forward to our future co-operation.

    Will Turnstone.


    • yes, that same thing has happened to me many times. Without the muscle strength to keep joints together the way they should be, it’s easy to cause something to go amiss. I’m able to do a little bit more now, thank God. Should be all better in a couple of weeks, God willing. Pax Christi


  2. prayers for a healed knee—or tendons and ligaments that is!
    it is amazing how aware we become of our body when one little piece is out of sync—then even how we breathe becomes so noticible.
    Here’s to healing Cristina!!


  3. Dear Christina your courage and endurance so inspiring
    brings my dear not-lost friend Charlie back to me
    brings me joyful sorrow for all the crosses
    everywhere brings back prayer brings
    Christ here again and again


    • to grin and bear it is not to lie,
      but an understanding of how to live:
      the alternative to pain is sometimes to die,
      but I have more that I must give.
      My needs are a burden that others bear,
      they lift me with their love;
      but in this lifting we both share
      in the strength and power that comes from above.

      Or something like that 🙂
      peace to you my friend

      Liked by 1 person

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