Sunday, October 16, 2011

Like a river

I have often told God in casual conversation that if He would just give me a good glimpse or preview of things to come, I could proceed much more easily with life. 

Thing is, I don't think God is that interested in my having an easy life. He wants me to have FAITH and to be FAITHFUL.  I love the verse of scripture that Kelly has on her blog home page about how we walk by faith, not by sight.  But if I could just have a glimpse . . . .

OK, so I'm a slow learner.

Wife share with me just a couple of days ago that she and her Bible Study group were studying the "peace of God" and how there are references in the Bible to peace being "like a river."

"What do you think about when you think about a river?" Wife asked me.

I told Wife that I think about rapids. I thnk about swifly moving water, about currents and eddies. And then I think about stillness, where the water is more calm.

"Exactly," said Wife.


These past few months have been interesting, to say the least and our faith has been stretched.  Older Son and DIL announce they are moving away.  Younger Son goes to college. Daughter starts a new job.

Kind of like those rapids I just referenced.

Earlier this year, long before his June wedding, Older Son shared with us about some pain he was having in his back. He went to his doctor and she referred him for some physical therapy. It helped some, but not a  great deal.

He had a cortizone shot before the wedding.  About a month ago he told us the pain had come back and was, in fact, a little worse. He was also feeling some tingling in his legs. 

Back to his doctor he went. This time she referred him to an orthopedic surgeon, who scheduled him for an MRI on a Thursday, the day before he and DIL would be leaving for Dallas. On Friday morning he saw the orthopedic to discuss the MRI.

Older Son has a herniated disk which is causing a pinched nerve, which is causing the pain. He gave him some options, one of which is surgery which should give him fairly immediate -- and permanent -- relief.  He talked to DIL and he talked to us and did some research. We all prayed and Older Son came to the decision that this would be the best option. Short term discomfort and inconvenience for long term benefit.

He was supposed to have flown to Dallas this past Friday night to stay permanently.  He did, in fact, go, but he and DIL will be returning to Nashville this Tuesday the 18th. On Wednesday the 19th Older Son will have surgery and he'll recuperate here with us for at least a couple of weeks. It is supposed to be a fairly short (about 45 minutes), minimally invasive procedure and, as I said, he should get relief from the pain.  And his surgeon has assured him this should be an isolated matter that will not give rise to a lifetime of chronic problems such as this.


Of course, if I could, I would trade places with my son. In a heartbeat.  That's what parents do.

But I can't.  So I'll join him in walking by faith, not by sight, and trusting God for that peace like a river.

I'll look forward to sharing a good report with all of you later this week. In the meantime, please send up a prayer on Wednesday.


Pencil Writer said...

Bob, you're such a wonderful father. And I just love your wife's analogy of a river and the water being so similar to life's challenges followed by peaceful, still water. I suppose I should say your mutual or combined analogy.

Many years ago my mother had back surgery for the same ailment and was back up and dancing 6 weeks later--much earlier than the 6 mos she was supposed to be in a body cast. (Remember, I did say it was MANY years ago.) Will be praying for your son, his wife and you and your family that Older Son will be blessed to have excellent results from his surgery and be back better than ever. Remember also, that wonderful verse in Matthew 19:26, ...with God, all things are possible. I'm sure that you, your wife, son and rest of your family and friends combined faith--and prayers--combined with the rest of us praying for Older Son--will enlist the tender loving blessings of a very personal Heavenly Father. Wasn't it in Exodus where the Lord told Joshua, "be of a good courage."?

Kelly said...

If I'm not mistake, that was the same diagnosis my husband had. His surgery provided instant relief, caused him no problems, and he was duck hunting within a few weeks.

Trust God and think positively!

Debby said...

The times when you need God the most are the opportunities to see Him work close up.

Of course I'll pray.

And two weeks of recuperating at home? I know your family will make the most of that! :)

Bob Barbanes: said...

Send prayers on Wednesday? Thy will be done!

Walking in faith is tough, I'll admit. The first step I suppose it to realize and acknowldge that *we* don't control our lives; God does.

What we want is trivial. I have seen time and time again that if I just trust in God to make things work out - they invariably do. Maybe not exactly the way I intend or predict, most often better!

And that's what so neat about life - the fact that we don't know what the future holds, but *HE* does! And if we just relax, close our eyes, truly trust in His goodness and, well, "go with the flow" (if you'll pardon the river analogy) then it takes so much of the worry out of our daily existence. For instance, something happens and I'll stress-out. Then I pray on it. A peace comes over me and I simply don't worry about the situation anymore. I know it will work out for the best- one way or the other. At least, that's how it works for me.

Will there be bad times? Of course, that's life. There will always be death and pain and suffering that we humans feel either in the first or third-person. But my unshakeable faith in God is what sees me through those times - and lets me rejoince in the good ones.

Yes, walk in faith, not in sight. A very good philosophy. Great post, Bob. I may have to steal the subject for my own blog ;)