Bursitis often erupts following unaccustomed physical exercise. I had begun a brisk walking program, and in a burst of overconfidence chose to do my middle-aged/elderly version of a jog up and down a small hill adjacent to our house.
My right hip now hurts, especially at night. I am biding my time and praying to avoid things like doctor visits and cortisone shots, and if you would pray this with me I would be very grateful.
This morning I made my awkward, grumbling way out of bed and staggered over to the mirror that hangs above the old oak dresser. I'd not slept much, and though I ought to have reached for my Bible, had spent fruitless time worrying about my Alzheimer's mom and the future instead. I leaned toward the mirror and examined the circles beneath my eyes in close detail, which did not improve my mood. Quoting Gideon, I addressed my reflection: "If the Lord is with us, why has all this happened to us?" (Judges 6:13).
I now feel silly and melodramatic as I confess how upset I felt over an aching back and my healthy, albeit dementia-impacted, 90-year-old mom. But there it is; this morning I placed my relatively minor trials on a par with being under siege by Midianites, and I felt I understood Gideon's plaintive question. Why, Lord? If You are with us why do these things happen?
I wept a little (self-pity, no doubt) and then reached for a tin of Cloverine salve and applied the comforting stuff to my reddened nose. My poor nose is often irritated this time of year with seasonal allergies, and I'm always a little surprised at how much discomfort a stinging, chapped nose can cause. But when I carry my trusty container of Cloverine with me and reapply often, I have no discomfort at all.
At this I felt the little heart nudge that tells me the Lord would like to make a point, although I admit I was a bit hesitant to accept an analogy between the healing balm of Gilead and my humble pot of Cloverine. But the connection is obvious, even to a middle-aged (or elderly) woman who has a hitch in her get along and an Alzheimer's mom: I can receive healing and strength if I will liberally partake of Scripture and reapply as needed.
Cast all your anxiety on him, because he cares for you.
--1 Peter 5:7