I have a recliner. It’s not one of those fancy LazyBoys, but maybe one day I will invest in one. It has become my friend and my enemy over the last ten years.
My husband was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis somewhere around 2001. We have really lost track of when he was diagnosed. He has lived with chronic pain longer than he can remember. But for about 5 years, it affected every area of our lives.
The pain keeps my husband awake. And it wakes him in the middle of the night. So his bed is both his friend and his enemy. It is the one place where he finds some relief. He tells me that early in the morning, as the sun is shining through the windows…if he lays very, very still…he feels no pain. Sometimes he will lay there for an hour just enjoying the sun and the warmth of the covers. It is the only hour of the day he will be pain-free. And at that moment, his bed is his friend!
We have learned to navigate the world of chronic illness with natural remedies. And God has walked with us through it all. However, there are still sleepless nights for him. And, for a season, his sleepless nights became my sleepless nights.
During one of the most challenging seasons of his R.A., I spent numerous nights sleeping in a recliner. It was the only way we could both find rest. Yet, in that season of rest and unrest, we discovered new things about ourselves, each other, and God.
Mostly, I think we realized we had been figuratively sleeping in a recliner all along. We were asleep to living our lives. Asleep to our relationship with one another. And asleep in our relationship with God. That time of our lives was a great trial and discouraging most days, but I wouldn’t trade those years. Today, we have a deeper and richer marriage than we would have had otherwise. Our relationships with God have transformed our hearts. And we have experienced life in fresh ways.
I am confident that God used that season to wake us up. Yet, so many people I know are asleep in their own recliners (of life). My hope is this blog will shake a few people, mend a few hearts, and challenge a few souls. I am not responsible for the whole world, but I am responsible for the years God has given to me. So, I am here; taking responsibility for the destiny I have received.
But in your heart, set apart Christ as Lord. And always be prepared to give an answer to anyone who asks you the reason for the hope that you have within you. And, do this with gentleness and respect. – 1 Peter 3:15