You Are Not Out of The Game!
A little over a week ago, I traveled to New York to celebrate my future niece Samantha’s upcoming marriage to my nephew Michael. It was a great day, kicked off by a wonderful bridal shower in the morning, hosted by her bridesmaids. Late that afternoon, a group of us met at Texas Roadhouse for dinner, followed by a painting party for Samantha’s bachelorette celebration.
While I was crossing the street headed for the painting studio, I was also talking with my cousin, and somehow I tripped. My first problem was trying to do two things at the same time. At least I wasn’t chewing gum too. As I tried to catch myself, all I could see was the curb approaching fast – way too fast. I knew I had to do something, so as I tried to dodge the curb, I went down in a heap. It was one of those falls that felt like slow motion, and everybody’s voice was in slow motion too, but it happened very fast.
I was carrying my cousin’s camera at the time, on which I know she holds millions of memories – only a slight exaggeration – and I was really upset that I might have broken her camera. I shouted, “Is the camera OK?” Everyone assured me the camera was okay. I was relieved. I lay there motionless.
As I lay on the ground in the middle of the street, everyone asked if I was okay. The only thing I could say at first was “I don’t know”. I was trying to get my bearings and have my eyes roll back to the front of my head and at least there was a sign I was alive. I felt pain. My arm was killing me, and so immediately I thought, “There goes my new shirt”. After all, I had just spent seven dollars on clearance for this cute shirt. Normally I muck up a shirt by spilling something down the front of it, not by falling.
The next thing I wondered about was what I had tripped over. Did you ever notice when someone trips they always look back to see what they tripped over? Well, in my case apparently the town of Binghamton had filled a pothole. Sort of. The asphalt patch was nowhere near smooth. Needless to say, my big toe found the irregularity and I became a casualty.
I came to my senses and sat up. My beloved family and friends were surrounding me and providing the best care they could at the time. I looked at my arm and thought, “Oh, crap, I think I broke my arm.” My elbow had immediately swollen up like a balloon. As I peeled back my sleeve, I could see I had skinned it up and was going to have some serious road rash. The first good news was I did not have one hole in my new shirt. I was happy! The second good news was I didn’t see any bones sticking out and I could bend my arm. It is amazing what you think about in a crisis because the next words to come out of my mouth were, “Do I have lipstick on?” I figured if I had to be in pain, I wanted to at least look good.
Then I noticed my leg was killing me. I looked down, but no blood. Actually, I was surprised because I was wearing capris. I thought for sure there would be blood. I also realized I was sitting in the road and it would probably be a good idea to move elsewhere. Wouldn’t that be my luck to survive a hellacious fall only to get hit by a car? Don’t worry though, my friends had it covered, because they were directing traffic as if they were the police.
Of course I couldn’t fall down in front of a closed store, so I was the dinner entertainment for the people sitting in the restaurant nearby. Well, that gave me motivation to get up and out of their view. So with some help from my wonderful friends and family, I became upright once again and moved over to the sidewalk.
You know, there are still nice people in the world. A couple of ladies in the restaurant came out with wet cloths so I could wipe the dirt off my arm, and asked if I was okay. One, ironically or I say “Godronically” was a nurse. She felt my arm and said she didn’t think it was broken, but said I should get it checked.
I refused to allow Samantha’s evening to be ruined by taking the time to go to the hospital until after the party was over. All I had to do was make it up two flights of steps and get myself to a lounger. I stayed on the lounger watching everyone while they painted. They brought ice for my knee and I lay there with my leg elevated and my arm across my chest. I began to wonder what the purpose for all of this was.
Everyone was so kind and caring. Their reassuring words and heartfelt questions were comforting. I truly saw Jesus in every one of those women, and some of them were complete strangers.
To make a long story short, when the painting was done we visited the local emergency room. The wait was going to be at least six hours, and to be honest it was the nastiest emergency room I have ever seen. People were coughing and vomiting and I knew if I didn’t get out of there I was going to end up with the plague or something worse. You know it has to be bad when the attendant is frantically running his hand through his hair and pulling it every time another patient comes in. As politely as I could, I asked the women I was with to get me out of that freaking zoo, and thankfully they abided by my wishes. Besides, in six hours I could be back home going to my own ER without the insurance hassle. We all know what a disaster dealing with insurance can be.
With my leg and arm swollen, I went back to my cousin’s house where we propped up my knee, got an ice bag and some painkillers and settled in until the next morning. When morning came I hobbled out of bed and down the stairs. My daughter, my cousin and her husband packed up the car and we headed home.
I did go our local ER, where they found no broken bones, but my right leg below my knee was still swollen like a watermelon. I am not even kidding or being dramatic. They checked to make sure I didn’t have a blood clot, and recommended I go to an orthopedic specialist. I followed up on that and nothing is torn, but I did some damage to the nerve which goes across my knee. The doctor also found some arthritis. (Imagine that!) Due to the damage I am going to physical therapy to help regain mobility. My arm is much better, but my leg still swells like a turkey leg if I spend too much time on my feet. The doctor says the swelling may last a few more weeks, but it could be months before I get full feeling back in the front of my leg.
Life can be miserable. It can be hard, overwhelming and seem very unfair. But, God never promised life would be easy or there would never be any suffering. We all have hurts. We all know pain in one form or another. Even the strongest feel defeated at times, or just plain tired. We can even feel like we have been abandoned because that is what the enemy wants us to think, but THINK again!
For the past week, I have been sitting on the couch with my leg elevated and iced, sitting still. I’m not used to that, but it’s where God needs me to be. I’m not saying God caused my fall, but He will use everything and anything for His glory and my good. As I’ve prayed for others like myself who feel like they are sitting on the sidelines, no matter the reason, this is the message God spoke to my heart. You may be sidelined, but you are not out of the game Click To TweetYou may be sidelined, but you are not out of the game. Rest in me because I am about to give you the playbook for how we are going to win your next victory! No matter whether the struggle you face today is physical, financial, spiritual or emotional, You may FEEL like you are sitting on the bench, but God is about to call on you, give you the play, and you are going to have renewed strength and perseverance to get back in the game and finish what God is calling you to do!