…by the flu.
Every routine that our family has ever established GONE. Our wonderful farmers market whole food eating plan has turned into whatever is pre-made at the store or easy to pick up from a restaurant. Sleeping schedules – how about sleeping at all? No TV – let’s just pull out that lap top and play movies until your brains turn to mush so I can survive the day. I HAVE survived – applause is appreciated here- 4 weeks of fevers, and late night luke warm baths, up all night with someone, medicine wars and meltdowns, throwing up here, there, and everywhere, a very sick daddy and an even sicker me. Survived, yes. But without casualties? NO.
I have been utterly discontent, exhausted, bitter, fearful, overwhelmed, and ungrateful… just to name a few. And what I have discovered in these last 4 weeks is that sometimes the most spiritual thing you can do, is just to do the next thing. Clean up throw up. Drag yourself off of the couch to throw something on a plate that vaguely resembles a meal. Give another hug when you just feel like locking your door and never coming out. Sometimes living the gospel is so painfully ordinary. Where was my “chariots of fire” music as I crawled into the tub fully clothed at 11:00 pm with my lip chattering fever spiking little one? Where was my olympic gold as I did yet another load of throw up laundry only to see another quickly on its way?
I wonder if Jesus beat back the feelings of smallness as he worked quietly with wood or went of alone to pray? I wonder in the moments not recorded, the painfully every day ones, if it was a hard choice to choose joy? I wonder if he ever felt far from His father, even though He was so near?
I have felt far, forgotten even. And although my head knows that those feelings are heresy because He lives in me and gives me breath and life each moment each day-it doesn’t make me feel them any less. The feelings are there, strong and unrelenting. The question is will I live by them or in spite of them?
I wish I could say I have done the latter, but I haven’t. I have cried and been angry and stopped my feet because I want an easy life. And then I am reminded that this IS EASY. For I have children to be sick, and a home to be thrown up all over. I have medicine to bring the fevers down and food to put in bellies that are aching. I HAVE SO MUCH…
I just have to preach it to myself over and over again. I have to remind myself that my troubles are “light and momentary and achieving for me an eternal glory that FAR outweighs them all” 2 Cor 4:17. And I have to be willing to lay me down. That is where it gets hard for me. To except the sickness, and let it work through me. Except the waiting and let it develop patience and perseverance and hope.
Living out the gospel is hard and usually so NOT heroic. But it is in that everyday surrender, in our quiet painful “yes” to the circumstances He has allowed that we become like Him.
Eaten alive and yet we press on, for Him and His name’s sake…