When your Christian walk is more of a limp

When your Christian walk is more of a limp

I hope you don’t think I’m running like the wind and leaping over life’s obstacles in a single bound. When your Christian walk is more of a limp, you may think someone else’s walk is easy or successful, you are wrong. We’re all in this struggle together.

WRECKED

I heard the pop when my lower right leg twisted West and my body went South. Chunks of snow burned my face as I sat on the slope amidst what looked like a yard sale of skis and poles. Not realizing I was hurt, everyone sped downhill except my daughter who helped me up. I snugged my ankle against my other leg and skied down the mountain, grimacing all the way. Three incisions and six weeks of physical therapy later, I was back to “normal.” Except not.

Prov 4:12,” When you walk, your steps will not be hindered, and when you run, you will not stumble.” NKJV

Immobility weakened my quadriceps and despite the therapy, I had a long way to go. So I went to the gym. A personal trainer worked with me through pain and sweat to strengthen my legs. When I went skiing the following year, I was stronger than ever. You see, that’s how it works. Exercising weak muscles makes them stronger. Exercising weak faith makes it stronger too.

I was tempted to avoid the pain, give up and sit in a chair. I certainly had a valid excuse. But training and effort got me back on track so it was worth it.

How strong are you?

Whether I’ve shared advice on forgiveness, anxiety or joy, you may have gotten the impression I have it all figured out. If so, then I owe you an apology. For full disclosure you need to know, my advice is tested and proven only in my own life. No doubt my life is a living example of overcoming adversity, so at least I’ll take a little credit for knowing what I’m talking about.

Psalm 119:45, “I will walk in freedom, for I have devoted myself to your commandments.” NLT

Formulas don’t work

There is no formula for walking in victory. Nothing could be farther from the truth and rarely does anything work the first time you try it.

Follow my advice on FORGIVENESS – it won’t work

Implement my recommendations for dealing with and ANXIETY – you’ll still be tied up in a ball of knots.

Choose JOY – I seriously doubt you will find it.

So what gives?

REPETITION

Practice makes perfect, better yet, perfect practice makes perfect. Open your Bible and nothing changed in your life? Open it again. Prayed the same prayer over and over with no visible results? Do it again. Still believing when evidence says don’t? Keep the faith, keep walking, even if it looks more like a limp.

Psalm 128:1, “Blessed is everyone who fears the Lord, who walks in his ways!” ESV

If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again

Consider every failure an opportunity to try again #perservere #endure Click To Tweet
 Never quit

That’s the secret. When your walk is more of a limp, hang in there. Keep on keeping on, it’s the only way to walk in victory.

Psalm 119:1, “You’re blessed when you stay on course, walking steadily on the road revealed by God. You’re blessed when you follow his directions. ” MSG

I can’t do this

I cannot do all things

Neither can you.

A mantra for Christian athletes, a popular plaque on the wall or the perfect verse for a tattoo, I can do all things. No, I do not have a tattoo, but can I do all things? No, I cannot do all things.

Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” NKJV

In junior high it applied to cheerleader tryouts. I can do all things. As a college student I used it before biochemistry tests. I can do all things. In residency it helped me through the first…Cesarean section, hysterectomy, delivery going bad… I can do all things.

However, I doubt Paul’s intention was to get Jesus to help us meet the goals we set for ourselves. Besides, I can’t really do all things. I can’t win the state gymnastics championship like my daughter and I can’t pole vault nearly 16 foot like my son. For crying out loud some days I can’t even stir a cake mix. No, I cannot do all things and Christ doesn’t always strengthen my muscles.

But He does give me exactly the strength I need.

Because He gives me strength, I can do a disabling illness

The seven hour infusion I get every three weeks causes headaches and fatigue. For a couple of days, I feel like I’ve just done an Ironman. Okay, I really don’t know what that feels like, but I can imagine. After the ice pick to my temple resolves, I get a couple of good weeks where I can visit the gym if I can remember my member number because they no longer recognize my face at the desk. Yeah I can do that.

Because He gives me strength, I can survive divorce

I never doubted we would grow old together after all we’ve been through. But my left hand is glaringly bare. Good grief, there’s been a ring on that finger since I got a promise ring in 1980. I’m learning to find happiness and identity in being single for the first time in my adult life. Through Christ, and only through Christ, I can do that too.

Because He gives me strength, I can handle the C word

We got bad news this week. My dad’s cancer is worse than we thought, a lot worse. Facing radical surgery and uncertainty, he went to the golf course. Not a bad idea. We should all do that.

We don't know what the future holds, but we know who holds the future #faith #trust Click To Tweet
Because He gives me strength, I can face tomorrow

I’m going to be real honest, I’m pretty worn down right now. There’s a lot on my shoulders and those I normally lean on need to lean on me and I’m barely vertical. That’s why I’m depending on His strength not mine. The same strength is available to you, so what can you do?

Philippians 4:13-14, “Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am. I don’t mean that your help didn’t mean a lot to me – it did. It was a beautiful thing that you came alongside me in my troubles.” MSG

Many of you have asked what you can do. This verse says it all,

Come alongside me in my troubles

A casserole doesn’t fix this

I appreciate your prayers, but I need more

Just be there

That’s all I ask

I can do it

Through Christ

He gives me strength

Because I can’t do this, but He can

Maybe I’ll get the tattoo after all. Just kidding. Thanks for sharing my journey. Bring your friends along too, it means more than you know.