Good morning! Today, I want to open my heart and share with you something that I am struggling with. For the past several weeks, I have been struggling with feelings of anxiety; it is affecting my eating and sleeping. While it is true that it has gotten worse since Dante tore his ACL and is facing surgery, it did not begin then. This has been going on for months. I am not worried that he will die on the operating table, and I am not worried that he will recover. I know many young men and women who have come through this and are playing basketball now. In fact, I have been told by more than one reputable source, that Dante’s knee will be stronger after the surgery than it has been in a long time. He will have months of hard therapy and rehab, but he will recover and be stronger than before!
So, why these feelings that I am dealing with? I’d identified that it was almost always coming from my own imaginings, and have learned that the devil most often attacks our minds & thoughts. I think that is why the Proverb 4:23 tells us to “Guard your heart above all else, for it is the source of your life.” And then yesterday, it finally sunk in to me how much my life has changed in the last half-year. I retired and moved to Oregon. That in itself would have necessitated some adjustments. What I did not expect was that after 51 years of working or going to school or both at the same time, it would all suddenly stop! As I drove across the barren lands of west Nebraska, southern Idaho, and eastern Oregon in July on my way here to Eugene, Oregon, I was thinking about the athletes I would tutor, the classes I would sub for, the home games I would attend, the Oregon athletes that I would meet & greet after the games, the away games that I would travel to, the new sights that I would see, the church worship services I would attend with my new church family as well as their ministries that I would participate in. However, restrictions due to the Covid outbreak have cancelled all of those. All. OF. THEM. If I might suggest an analogy: I was traveling 70mph and hit a concrete wall! And while I walked a lot every day when I first got here and often interacted with people that I met along the way, I haven’t been able to do that much over the last month because of the rain and cold.
So, I have identified the source of my angst. Today, I am thinking what to do about it. I am reminded first of all of Paul’s writings in 2 Corinthians 1: 3-11. He concluded that he needed to trust not in himself, but in God. That raises a question in my mind: how do I do that? I see some clues from the passage itself:
1.( v. 8) Paul admitted his own inability to handle the situation on his own
2. (v. 10) Paul remembered what the Lord had already done and affirmed that He could do it again.
3. (v.3) Paul thanked and praised God.
4. (v3-11) Paul turned to his brothers and sisters in Christ for help, not to pills or activities.
5. (v. 3, 11) Paul told others about it so that they would pray for him, and also so that they would praise God when he answered their prayers.
There is probably much more in that passage, and certainly there is in the whole of God’s Word, but this is what I see today. I already feel better just writing this all down!!
I will continue to seek to become a bit more active here; I’ve had much too much free time on my hands and mind, and the devil has used that as an open door to attack. However, I know that just keeping busy is in itself not enough. I knew it before, and I have confirmed it again. I need to gain my strength from the Lord, not work. “I am able to do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Phil. 4:13
I do ask and thank you for your prayers. Pray for me to successfully navigate this adjustment into retirement.
In addition, Dante tore his ACL on Dec. 17th. He asked me not to post anything on Facebook, so I have not. But I think this blog is a safe way to share his needs. He will have his ACL surgery the middle or the end of next week. I was told again last night by a coach how much Dante will need me in the first weeks and months after that. I have no clue how that is all going to look or work out. And for someone who usually plans almost everything a year in advance, this is a challenge. Waiting and being ‘on call’ is a new one for me. So, I ask you to not only pray for me, but also for Dante’s healing and for his rehab and therapy period. And most important of all, pray that through all of this Dante will see God’s power and goodness in his life.