February 7, 2012

Falling Down and Up

When was the last time you fell down?
I mean really fell down - as in skinned hands & knees, limping home with tears in the corners of your eyes.  Were you 6 or 7 and pushed your bike home sniffling and thinking angry thoughts at the two-wheeled death trap that had caused your pain...vowing to never-ever ride again? At least not until well after mom had tortured you with some soap & water and maybe antiseptic spray and a few bandages. Remember those times?

I fell down yesterday.... and at my age and current level of non-fitness, it was a spectacularly UN-graceful fall that resulted in not only the aforementioned skinned hands & knees but a lovely cut right across the bridge of my nose.  Yes - I managed a face-plant into the pavement!  Now that takes some talent when all you are doing is walking the dog. Seriously....who falls down and hurts themselves like that walking the dog on a nice, faux-spring day?
Answer:  Me.
Well... I'm sure that other people manage some pretty dandy injuries doing some other non-dramatic things as well, but I'm considering that I may have a unique talent in this area.  I don't hurt myself often, (and I don't consider myself klutzy at all), but when I do hurt myself... they tend to be pretty awful and painful injuries doing mundane and normal things.  At Christmas this year I threw my back out while tying the lace on my slipper.  Several years ago I sliced my finger open  - with my wedding ring - while I was simply closing a storm door.  Can't say that I don't have my talents.

As for the "up" part?  That was afterwards...
When I fell, I was out with Piper alone and we were about a half-mile or so from home.  So I dusted myself off best I could - not realizing that the bridge of my nose was bleeding (I just knew my face hurt & a nasty headache had begun) - and we headed back home...slowly... limping a little... and yes, there were a few tears in the corners of my eyes and I was almost tempted to think angry thoughts at the dog for tripping me.  But as we made our way along ... there was a warm breeze, the sun was glorious and the sky....oh the sky!  The most gorgeous blue!
All of a sudden I felt a smile... really... it was pretty funny.  I'm almost 42... I was walking the dog on a nice day.... and I face-plant on the side of the road?  Seriously?   You can laugh...  It is really pretty ridiculous!

Before I fell, I'd been thinking about a new book study I'm going to be starting in a week.  It's something that I've felt that God wants me to do for quite a while and when the opportunity was offered, I said yes.  Willingly, but with lots of insecurity. 
As I walked... I was thanking God for the gifts of the day and then I started thinking a bit about the study, then I started to worry about how I was not equipped to lead this particular group of women.  Really... I bet lots of these women have forgotten more about scripture than I will ever know.  They've served God for years (here and abroad), finished college, are smart, talented, gifted & accomplished and they have some style! What am I thinking that I'm going to offer them?
And then -  WHAM!  I fell.  Concentration shattered - focus shift onto my immediate pain & minor embarrassment (a total stranger saw me fall). 
But as I was going home....the sky and sunshine... gifts from the God who loves me so much.  I could be thankful to God for those gifts even with my skinned hands/knees and aching face.
Why?  Because they were there... and I chose to see them as gifts. 

And the study?  It isn't about me!  I don't HAVE to be equipped!  Okay... maybe that doesn't make sense. But this verse popped into my head while I was washing blood off my nose...
2 Corinthians 12:9   But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

People, you don't get much weaker feeling than lying on your face on the side of the road. 
This study group opportunity is one that God has given me... He has a reason and He knows all about me. He must have a plan.  And because I said 'yes' to doing this.... He will use me  - somehow... perhaps in spite of myself.  Only because the deepest desire of my heart is to be useful for His purposes and to bring Him glory.... and I said 'yes'.  Stepping really far outside my comfort zone to do something that makes my throat tight but my heart leap with anticipation of joy.  I am so excited to see what is going to happen in the coming weeks!  God is going to do .... stuff!  And He is letting me be part of it!
I am so thankful to see this gift... and am looking forward to counting all the ones to come.

Blessings on the journey~

(Walk carefully!)