Have you ever been in a car accident? I can only imagine how painful it must be! I accidentally bumped into a parked car once — while walking — and was shocked at how much that little tap hurt.
Life knocks us down in all sorts of ways, on all sorts of days. Not every bump and bruise looks or feels as painful as a car accident, but they hurt like heck. For a long time. Sometimes we carry emotional and physical scars around for the rest of our lives.
Sometimes we hide our pain. We pretend everything is all right when we feel broken or even dead inside.
Two months ago while running I tripped on a crack in the sidewalk, fell, and ripped my arm bone from my shoulder socket (which is Why You’re Safe Everywhere — Blossom Tip 56!). I’m still struggling with painful nights, aching bones, and lack of sleep. I’m leery of taking too much pain medication because I don’t want to get addicted, but I’m getting really tired of feeling stiff and sore.
Chronic physical pain takes a toll on one’s spirits, doesn’t it? Last week I experienced the lowest point of my life. Talk about being knocked down! I felt emotionally and spiritually broken, exhausted, weak and tired. My tank was empty, I was running on fumes, and I was tired of fighting.
I’ve never felt so low or broken. I’ve also never felt so humble, meek, or grateful just to be alive.
Yesterday I turned a corner. It started with a close reading of Psalm 27 and a four-page conversation with God at 4 a.m. It ended with an appointment with my orthopedic surgeon; he looked at the X-ray and said my bones, muscles and tissues are healing well. The metal plate and eight screws holding my shoulder and arm bone together didn’t shift or come loose. Hooray! I’m on the road to recovery.
Healing is exhausting…and so is starting over.
Starting over after life knocks you down
You know what it’s like to start over, don’t you? Maybe you’re living in a strange new world, without familiar faces or friends. Maybe you feel lost and alone. Maybe you’re starting a new life and it’s not what you planned, expected, or even wanted.
Maybe you’re discouraged because you’ve felt unhappy for a long time. Maybe you’re disheartened because you don’t seem to be making any progress, or you feel like you’re spinning your wheels. Maybe you think your life will never change and you’ll be stuck feeling this way forever.
Starting over is never easy, even when you initiated the change. It’s scary to let go of the old familiar world, relationships, people. It’s uncertain because you don’t know what you’re doing, why, or how it’ll turn out. It’s lonely because nobody understands how you feel even if they’re walking right beside you.
Take heart, for you are not alone.
Living in a strange new world
I recently started a She Blossoms Through the Bible project; I’m writing an article with insights and tips for each chapter in every book of the Bible. At the end of my project, God willing, I’ll have written 1,189 articles! At the end of this article you’ll find the list so far, starting with The Reason You Were Created – Step 1.
This is a strange and scary new world for me, and I don’t know how it’ll unfold. Can I really write 1,189 articles inspired by the Bible? I have no idea. I’m taking it one day at a time, one chapter at a time, one article at a time.
My favorite insight so far is that God constantly allows us — His children, whom He dearly loves and died for — to experience strange new worlds. Sometimes our strange new worlds are the result of a wrong decision, such as Adam and Eve choosing not to trust God. Sometimes our strange new worlds are violent and painful, such as Cain killing his brother Abel. Sometimes our strange new worlds are weird and confusing, like when Noah and his family were finally allowed off the ark to rebuild their lives on land. Talk about starting over in a whole new life!
What strange new world have you been thrown into? Maybe it’s exciting or dangerous, planned or unplanned, happy or sad. Maybe you were thrown into a new life, job, home, city or country months or years ago, and you’re still struggling to adjust.
Finding strength to rise again
Maybe you’ve been knocked down and you’re having trouble getting up. Maybe you don’t even want to get up because you might fall harder next time. Maybe you feel like it’s easier to stay down and let the darkness win.
Don’t let the darkness win.
Here’s how I rose again: I didn’t look inside myself for energy, power, or strength. Instead, I talked about my brokenness to God and people I trust. I took time away from the internet, phone, computer and books so I could listen more intently for God’s voice. I learned more about Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
How will you rise again? Remember how you healed and rose in the past. Try different things. Go deeper into your spiritual life, for that is the only true source of light, joy, healing, peace and freedom.
Your strange new world may feel different and weird, perhaps even uncomfortable and painful at first. But if you allow yourself to hear and follow Jesus’ invitation, you’ll find more gifts and blessings than you ever imagined.
With His love,
She Blossoms Through the Bible
- When You Feel Confused About Your Life – Step 10
- What God Wants for You – Step 9
- How to Wait on God Without Losing Faith – Step 8
- What to Do When You Hear God Calling – Step 7
- Proof That You Matter to God – Step 6
- How to Walk in Faith – Step 5
- Healing Your Heavy Heart – Step 4
- Who You Were Created to Be – Step 3
- What You Were Created to Do – Step 2
- The Reason You Were Created – Step 1