I was at my parents home this past week. My dad looked so good and was doing so well. He had gained some weight and look very healthy. He was walking around the house without a cane and doing quite well. I am not around him walking enough to not be nervous at every stutter step, but he is doing wonderful. My mom continues to be incredible through it all. Mowing the yard, cooking and making special milkshakes for him 2 or 3 times a day, taking care of the business of the house, and making sure dad gets in all his exercises. Each day, or nearly every day, they go to their workout facility and go through all kinds of strenuous exercising. Dad rides the bike for 30 minutes while mom is shooting. Then they get back together and walk all over that place doing different weights, stretches, machines, etc!!! It is a huge ordeal and mom is so patient to go thru each thing with dad helping him along the way. What a servant!
Let me take you back a few months.... Nov. 16 mom had surgery on her shoulder - kind of like some reconstruction since having it dislocated in a basketball game. Then on Dec. 8 Dad had his stroke. Before the stroke dad too was scheduled to have surgery on his shoulder as he had torn his rotator cuff. He could barely reach to get the salt or pepper off the table because his movement was so limited. In rehab that arm, torn rotator cuff arm, was his unaffected or good arm and yet it was not very good either. I remember the therapists looking at him and just having such a pity because he so needed that arm, but it was not of much use.
Fast forward to present day... Dad was showing this weekend how he can raise the "torn" arm up just about over his head. He no longer has limited movement. It doesn't hurt near as much as it used to. If you have ever had this kind of injury you would say this must be another miracle in my dad's life. So where am i going with all this...
Physically, it is obvious that when we are worn down in an area our body does need to rest so that if it can repair itself that can happen. It is also very obvious that when our focus is on something other than one thing all the time incredible things can happen.
Standing there watching my dad lift his arm, the one that he could not even lift his elbow higher than parallel to the ground, the one that was not affected by the stroke at all, the Lord gently nudged and said - I am trying to teach you something here.
"Leigh, having your focus and attention all on one thing is quite debilitating. It is almost like you get injured and are unable to go forward in life. What I see more times than not in your life is that your focus gets stuck on you. You are looking at all the things in your life that could be different. You are looking at the things about yourself that bug you. It becomes you you you! Actually, Leigh, it is paralyzing."
The Lord went on to whisper, "When you take the focus off the "bad arm" then you are able to heal. Focusing on others and their needs truly is healing in your life. It is the reaching out to a family, reaching out to the community, reaching out to your enemy, reaching out to your neighbor that acts as soothing therapy. It is in trusting ME enough to take your eyes off yourself so that I can supply your every need while you use what I have given you to help supply another. Allow me to take care of you while I use you to take care of others...."
That is life to me. It is not about accumulating even though I do that real well, too well, but about giving back! It is about trust - trusting the Lord to work through me, through me in giving and through me to heal me. Life is about doing for others and He will always come thru! Every time I go home I am reminded of selfless love my mom is constantly showing my bad. I am reminded of our need to need the Lord as I see my dad need my mom. I see the hard work and diligence it takes to recover from whatever trials come our way through my dad's example. I see our need for a partner or helper or encourager or accountability in life as my mom is to my dad - we don't need to do this alone. This trial is no fun for either one of them, but as they have always done throughout my life and in this situation is no less, they are giving out to me and teaching me through it all....still!
Lord, thank you for the ears to hear you. Thank you for the example of love and devotion i see in my parents. Thank you for reminding me to never stop - never stop giving of myself, but to forever stop focusing on me! God you are good. Bless momma and daddy!! I love you, Lord!