We’re 2 months in to this new year, and it feels as though it’s been a whole year just by itself. Our Christmas holidays were dampened by a severe case of flu, and we had hoped when the New Year came around that we’d see a happy upwards trend including my health. Unfortunately, that was a pipe dream. I’ve been in bed for most of this year so far, suffering from 3 consecutive bad cases of flu. The trend was to come down with a high fever for 5 days, stay in bed for 10 days before I’d be strong enough to get back to normal life, be healthy for 4 days and then come down with another fever. Wash. Rinse. Repeat. It’s been extremely discouraging, but hopefully I truly am on the mend now. 2 Wednesday’s ago I had already been sick in bed for a week, but instead of getting better I was rapidly getting worse, so we went in to see a Dr and discovered a bacterial infection in my sinuses and throat that was keeping my body from being able to fight off the viral flu infections that I kept coming in contact with. So I had been getting weaker and sicker for 6 weeks and my body was giving up on trying to fight. I’ve been on antibiotics since then, and within 4 days I was nearly the picture of health again. And so far, I’ve managed to go a full week in complete health! So here’s hoping….
Somehow, David has managed to stay healthy despite all my germs, and we are so grateful for that, because he’s been very busy handling all sorts of important things. This new House we’ve moved into has had many problems: leaking roof, broken water heater, broken air conditioner, mouse problems, brown recluse infestation, mildewed carpets needing to be torn out, broken and subsequently flood producing dishwasher, the list goes on. But for each thing David has been a master of patience and skill in managing it all. His evenings and weekends have been packed with house maintenance, freelance graphic design jobs, and putting out various fires wherever they decide to crop up that day. All along taking care of me, during the times that I was too weak to make dinner much less get out of bed.
Have I mentioned what an incredible person my husband is? He’s been doing all this, and more, without complaint or frustration, and all the while missing out on any sort of R&R time that he might normally have enjoyed on the weekends or after he comes home from work each day.
Last month after leaving church, we were in a bad car accident. We were stopped in traffic (in my beautiful new suv that we had purchased only 5 weeks before) and a distracted driver hit us from behind, going nearly 50 miles per hour! Naturally it threw us into another vehicle, and totaled our suv. It was an extremely traumatizing experience. David was punched in the face with his airbag, I received intense bruises and abrasions, and we both have been in treatment from a chiropractor for the pain in our spines. We were incredibly grateful for our dear friends Philip and Rachel, who had left church just after we had, and were only a few cars behind us when we were hit, so they stopped and stayed with us during the aftermath and then drove us to the hospital (thankful to avoid ambulance costs) to get checked out. Our shepherding elder Frank and his wife Barbara live around the corner from where the accident took place so Philip called them and they came and joined us at the hospital, and our wonderful pastor Nathan met us there as well. We were given the OK on our own bodies, but our main concern was for our baby. After the accident I was in acute pain in my lower abdomen and had immediate bruising from the seatbelt biting into my pregnant belly. We sat in the waiting room anxiously praying for God’s mercy on our little one, and the presence of our sweet church family members was a comfort. After a few more tests and an ultrasound we were assured that the baby seemed to be doing okay, but to check with my OBGYN later that week, and were discharged. David’s parents drove us home and made us dinner so that we were able to just climb in bed. We were so grateful that there were no worse injuries!!
But it’s been a trial since then- it’s consumed a great deal of time, trying to resolve the insurance claims and get our dues, before we are able to put a down payment on a new vehicle. So I’ve been back to driving my old clunker car, while David’s been borrowing his work’s company van. Yet again, David’s been handling everything with such competence and patience, even though paperwork and phone calls are not his forte and stress him out. I’m hoping we’re getting close to obtaining a new vehicle soon so that we can close out the whole ordeal and put it behind us.
So that has been our life for the last 2 months- sickness and brokenness and I would be lying if I said it hasn’t been discouraging. I’ve been more thankful than ever for the wonderful church we belong to, as the last few weeks the sermons have been so exactly what we needed, and have given us the strength to get through these troubles.
But life hasn’t only been trouble! We are first and primarily blessed by a very simple presence in our life- the presence of God’s face. He’s been making Himself known to us in many small ways, and as our pastor reminded us a couple weeks ago, all of life’s troubles pale in comparison to looking full in the face of God our Healer and Provider. We also were overjoyed a few weeks ago to learn that our little one is a little girl, and it makes this expectancy of our first child feel so much more real and exciting, being able to imagine who she is and will be, and begin to make plans. But we are also being strengthened and encouraged in love! Through all these struggles and trials recently, we’ve experienced a deeper love, companionship, and intimacy in our marriage than ever before. We’ve been watching each other live under heavy fire, and for myself, it’s multiplied the respect and admiration I have for my husband more than I could have thought possible.
When I was a 12 year old, I was struggling with a certain difficulty in life, and in my struggle I was asking God why. Why was this happening, what was it for, and why did it have to hurt so much. I found my answer in a book on trust. It reached so far into my soul, that not only have I never forgotten it, but it has shaped how I see and react to every single pain and trial in the life God has given me. It was this one small sentence:
“That which God does, is always for His glory and our good.” – Jerry Bridges
That is how I can handle the curveballs life throws, the sorrow, pain, frustrations, and hurts because I know beyond any doubt, that what God allows me to go through is always in pursuit of my own good as well as His ultimate glory. He knows best, and I can trust in that. And so with every question “why” I can find comfort in the love of God that protects me from anything that He hasn’t designed for my good.
I wonder what the next couple months will look like?