Day 21: Reworking My Plans

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It was a very eventful weekend, rich with eagerly-awaited loved ones coming
(and going), a houseful of marvelous people and a powerful show in Faro with
No Longer Music. The unanticipated finale was that one of the guys in the band had to be taken to the hospital at 1 am on Sunday, suffering from a severe cellulitis infection in his legs. The doctors said he’d need to be kept for several days at the very least,
and the band had their next show in Seville, Spain, that very evening.

Things don’t always go quite the way you expect them to. I have noticed that.
Quite frequently, as a matter of fact.

10399513_1016484035054472_2011008040495668112_nWith our friend alone
in the hospital here in Faro, most likely
for the rest of the week,
it was time
to rework my plans.
I had been feeling exhausted even before
the weekend rolled around. And I’ll confess,
the carrot dangling
in front of my nose,
helping me make it through was the vision
of being able to lay in bed almost all day Sunday
once everyone had left,
and rest my aching
and fatigued muscles.

Well,
that wasn’t gonna happen.
So deal with it.

Challenge number 21.

Reworking my plans is not a huge challenge in and of itself. I have to do this all the time. But altering them by choosing to keep pushing myself, when I know my body is screaming for rest is something I have learned I am better off NOT doing. Fibromyalgia fatigue is like a vicious cycle: the more you push, the more fatigue you experience. More fatigue means poor sleep. Poor sleep means more fatigue and pain.
Resting in order to break the cycle is not only wise, it’s imperative.

But I have walked in my friend Ge’s shoes. I have been the one laying in a hospital bed, when my first daughter was small and my husband was away, in a country that did not yet feel like my own. Hospital staff speaking an unfamiliar language, encountering medical philosophies and practices that were very different from those I was accustomed to. And I was so ill, my life and the life of my yet unborn daughter resting in the hands of these people I could barely communicate with.

It is an incredibly vulnerable and lonely feeling.

So my own need for rest was not going to keep me from going to the hospital to make sure that my friend was being well-cared for. And as difficult as it was for me, those first couple days were ten times rougher for him. He had a high fever that wasn’t responding to medication, terrible pain in his legs, there were complications in contacting his insurance company, he was being kept in a bed in the Emergency Room rather than being transferred to a regular ward – one thing after another. But it was a privilege to sit and talk with him, pray for him as he slept, round up others around the world to pray. To do my best to guarantee that his needs were being met and he was receiving proper care for his illness.

I’m grateful for this day’s challenge. But I’m even more thankful that I serve a God who renews my failing strength when I’m weak and weary, supplying all that I need to get me through.

Tomorrow I will rest. And I can’t wait to see Ge healthy and on his feet again!
Please keep praying with me for him!

He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.
Isaiah 40:29-31

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