Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Day by Day - physical and spiritual exercises

I have been doing physical therapy on my left ankle for the last two weeks. What can I say about it? It is repetitive and tedious. I move my ankle 40 times to the left and then to the right. (I would rather run 5 miles) I then take a stretch band and put one end over my ankle and hold the other end in my hand and pull slightly as I move my ankle up and down. Because I have issues with my toes not moving as they should, I also need to put a towel on the floor and ‘try to pick up the towel’ by curling my toes about 40 times. There are more exercises and all have to be done 3 times a day, but I won’t bore you with the details.
Though most of the exercises feel insignificant and puny and I don’t see instant results, I know I need to do them all persistently to have a strong ankle. But I want the end results now; I do not like this ‘one day at a time’ thing. I would like instant gratification, now!

It has been reminding me of my relationship with God. I want the connection; I want the peace and joy that comes from being connected to my creator. But I don’t always want to do the ‘exercises’ that I need to do to make it happen. I want the end result … living a life that serves and honors God, but I want to skip over the day by day training.

When I do my physical therapy exercises I can see and feel my ankle moving and ‘working’, but I cannot see anything happening in the inside. I cannot see or feel the tendons, muscles or bones getting any stronger in my ankle. I don’t get up from doing the exercises and find my ankle healed anymore than it was an hour earlier. I have to go by the information I have to know that something is slowly happening in there … my knowledge of how the body works and what the professionals, my doctor and physical therapist, tell me will result from doing the exercises daily.

Sometimes when I do my 'spiritual exercises', it is much the same way. I don’t feel or see anything happening in myself. While it can be a peaceful and calm process to read, pray, write and be still … I don’t emerge from the time being a ‘holy human.’ I am still me … at times, selfish, unkind and impatient, the whole package of a messy human. But I make a choice to believe what the Bible, my pastors and others I trust say … step by step, day by day … I am connected to my Creator and my soul is renewed, healed and strengthen.

Just like I would rather go on a run than do physical therapy … somedays I would rather write or speak about my walk with God, than actually walk with God. At times, I have to be intentional about reading the Bible, praying, journaling, and serving, because otherwise it just doesn’t happen. But only when I have done that am I then ready for the ‘long run’ that He calls me to. Spirit of God, help me ‘one day at a time.’

By the way … I have about 6 more weeks of therapy to go through … ugh. And God only knows if I will be able to run again. My doc doesn’t really think it is a realistic idea, he says due to all the injuries, my leg might be too compromised. So maybe I need to take up biking ...

3 comments:

Joan said...

Don't make it a struggle, just learn to be in the moment.
Joan
Scotland

a journey said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
a journey said...

Thanks for visiting my site. Yes, living in the moment is one of the keys, isn't it?

Actually, that is my natural bent ... to live in the moment and I forget that sometimes I need to look beyond today. So I have found that at times I need to be intentional with some structure in my life in order for me to be balanced.

And balance is a good thing ... like "love your neighbor as yourself." Don't love others so much you neglect yourself, but also don't love yourself so much you can't see beyond your own nose.

Thanks for the comment