GIFTS OF FAITH IN A LIFE OF CHRONIC PAIN

Living each day while in chronic pain is difficult. Understatement. What else can it be? I think those of us who suffer constantly from this problem can testify to the fact that some days can be and are better than others. For me, my faith in God makes it all bearable and I can’t imagine how anyone without faith in a power greater than themselves can go it alone. I simply know I could not.

For me each morning begins with a prayer for both my attitude and for strength to make it through another day and to give and receive blessings during that day. I have to know there is divine intervention available to me at all times. If God is love then you and I both have a right to expect that daily walk with faith and the power it brings into our lives.

I often find those small, ordinary God moments in the form of the very ordinary things in life. Take dusting, for instance. I hate dusting. To me it is the most useless of all household chores, especially now when no one is coming into our house unless it is a workman of some sort. In regular times I only worry about getting rid of cat paw prints from the glass topped tables, or obvious dust…you know, the kind you can literally write messages in like “HELP, I I’M DROWNING IN DUST”? I don’t allow it to get that bad, usually. Strangely enough when I dusted the other day, Swiffer in one hand and Windex and paper towel in the other, I received a quiet little moment of peace just by accomplishing that simple deed.

There is a little law of accomplishment in our lives, especially for those of us who are handicapped by life and pain. We realize we can’t lie in bed all the time, some of life’s simple chores must be faced and we actually feel better when we accomplish them. To be productive is important in even the smallest things in life.

Another blessing we can receive each day is the gift we share with all living things that surround us. I often struggle to water my plants on our old Victorian front porch, but it gets done and I always feel better by carrying that jug of water out to them. It gives me a chance to be blessed by their beauty and fragrance and to enjoy being outdoors where I have a view of the mighty and beautiful Columbia River here on the NW Oregon coast. There is a life confirming blessing in seeing all of God’s gorgeous color palette. The many shades of green and blue are unlimited in their beauty. Also, on the days when I simply am not up to it, my dear husband will do it for me or I can call my granddaughter to come over and help me out. I do try to get that experience for myself when I can.

Another more active form of life’s blessings is available around here in the form of our funny and beautiful four-footed friends. Often, when I am feeling blue our cat, Clancy, all golden and white furriness, seems to sense my mood and comes over and plops himself down on my chest and begins to purr. Another blessing given and received. There is also our little Yorkie, George, who is always up to something goofy albeit irritating, he does get my attention and my love as well as returning much love.

Over these last two weeks my spouse and I received a wonderful blessing in the form of one of those special God moments. You know, when you know without a shadow of a doubt that He is watching over you? Well, let me explain and please bear with me as it gets a bit complicated.

I have been discussing with my husband over the last year to have an air conditioner installed in our home. I find with my multiple illness’s I am very sensitive to excessive heat. Our 130-year-old Italianate Victorian home is not insulated beyond the wallpaper on the walls and the upstairs, where our bedroom is located, can get at least ten degrees or more hotter than the temperature outside. We’re often gifted with wind which helps but not always. A hot day around here is 80 degrees which means it is at

least 90-95 degrees in our upstairs rooms. We’ve had a small room sized window air conditioner for several years but it doesn’t always get the job done for the whole upper level and does nothing for the downstairs.

Finally, after many conversations and wifely “bugging” the poor man gave in. We called the air/heat guy we’ve used for several years and he came out and perused the basement, wearing his mask. Strangely enough, he never got back to us with an estimate. My daughter told us about their guy and I called him. He came out in a timely manner and gave us a reasonable estimate to put in air. Because of the Covid mess in the world we put it off for awhile thinking it would all pass and when it didn’t, we finally had him come out. He was very professional in his approach as were his workmen.

When he took the heater apart as part of the installation of the air conditioner, he discovered and showed my husband, a large crack in the floor of our heater. Apparently, the filter the usual heater guy had installed was too small and had caused overheating and a crack in our heating unit. We had been exposed to carbon monoxide in the house and had no way of knowing it. The unit was about 10 years old or a bit less. Right then was a reason to thank God for the whole idea of installing an air conditioner because of the dangers from that gas. At that point it became obvious we would have to have a new heater installed. The good news was that we wouldn’t be charged for removing the old heater because the new technician had already taken the broken heater apart and it was part of the original estimate but of course, we would have to pay for a new heater, if not its installation.

The heating/air technician has been out a few times to get this unit just right as we now have a new air conditioner. The last afternoon he was here was also interesting from a faith perspective. That morning, I had to look through one of our many junk drawers upstairs to find some glue to

fix a little broken collectible and there, in the drawer right on top was a long strip of Velcro. I pushed it aside to find the glue.

The poor guy’s day ran quite long, we were waiting for our dinner as was he and he finally showed up at 7 PM. He decided for our convenience and for more efficient running of the new air unit to move our thermostat upstairs to our bedroom as it is remote controlled unit. He placed the unit on the wooden door sash and said, “Oh darn, I have to run over to the shop, I need more Velcro.”

He held in his hand a piece of black, ultra-strong black Velcro the exact size of the one I had seen in our junk drawer that morning. I walked five feet away to the drawer, took out my Velcro and handed it to him. He gave me a funny look and I smiled. Thank you, Lord. Thank you for the big and the smaller blessings in this our life.

Living a life of faith is an adventure as is a life with chronic pain and/or illness. I wanted to share a few of my ongoing blessings and a few “God moments” with you today. Thank you for allowing me to share with all of you. God bless as you search each day for those bright spots in what can be a dreary and hard to live life. Always remember however tough life gets, there is someone more powerful that you and I who cares and intervenes in our lives if we let Him and seek His help.

14 thoughts on “GIFTS OF FAITH IN A LIFE OF CHRONIC PAIN

  1. Enjoy your new A/C. Don’t know what I would do without mine. Here in Jersey this summer the humidity was horrendous, hard to breathe and we mostly stayed inside. It bothers me so much. I’m thankful each day we can afford to keep it on.

    • Arlene, You are fortunate to have A/C. The humidity can make breathing far too much work. Hope you got something out off the blog. Fondly, Sue

  2. Arlene, Indeed too much humidity can make breathing much more difficult…larger particles. Hope you liked the blog. Fondly, Sue

  3. A master piece Sue on how to notice the God moments
    It certainly makes you stop and think back
    The A/c will be a boon come next summer
    Since moving to a single storey house we are ok,but I well remember our old bedroom in the summer and facing west made it worst for the night.
    Chris

  4. Thank you Sue. I also push through my day and although I think about retirement, I am afraid to stop! Seems to me that it’s better to keep pushing onward even when I hurt and I’m afraid of the consequences if I don’t.

  5. Thank you Sue. I also push through my day and although I think about retirement, I am afraid to stop! Seems to me that it’s better to keep pushing onward even when I hurt and I’m afraid of the consequences if I don’t.

    • Brenda, Sorry about the duplication. We’re having trouble with wordpress apparently. I know there are days that are just too hard to endure. Thank God each day is only 24 hours long. Hang in there but don’t make yourself sicker. Fondly, Sue

  6. Wonderful reminders, Sue. I am finding one of the biggest blessings of this whole pandemic time for me is more time to commit to working on what I need to do physically and mentally so I can move better, sing better, and hopefully alleviate some of the pain. Sadie and I see little Godwinks on our walks, and of course, she and the cats are entertaining and comforting. I don’t always find pleasure in dusting and such, but did feel a real sense of accomplishment the other day when I took time to purge and reorganize one of the pull out drawers in our pantry. So much more of that to do, but it will be a little at a time. I know I have been MIA here more and more. My best friend’s cancer is gaining ground and I have been joining her mother and sister in taking turns spending time with her and her husband this summer to help care for her and keep her company and in good spirits. It means a lot to her, and to us. Rest assured, however, you and yours are in my thoughts and prayers.

    • Lyn, So sorry to hear about your good friend’s cancer getting worse. What a heavy burden for all involved. I’m certain all of you who love her are bring sunshine into her life. I pray she isn’t suffering. I know you have made a lot out of this isolation that has been thrust upon all of us…good for you. Yes, even a simple drawer cleaning can be a reward. Accomplishment.
      Of course, I see all your entries on FB regarding your menagerie. I know they bring you and I much joys. Oh, our pets! Love, Sue

  7. Hello Sue. I am a new second-career nursing student and needed to find a blog about living with chronic pain. I’m so glad I found you! I thought I’d just read one post, write about it and call it a day, but I’m going to keep reading!! I am so grateful for your uplifting words. Thank you.

    • Moshieinva, Welcome, please enjoy following me on Google, here or on everydayhealthcom. I hope you do not live with chronic pain but if you do, please feel free to also join me on FB. Do you know I am retired RN? What country or state do you live in? Always interested.Be sure to come again. Sue

  8. siau.co.uk, Thank you for your kind remarks. Please continue to let me hear from you. I hope you are not personally in pain all the time. Do take care…Sue

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