WHAT DOES THE BIBLE SAY ABOUT PHYSICAL EXERCISE? HOW HAS MY LIFE CHANGED?
I wrote about doing exercises with a DVD while sitting in a chair and my lack of discipline. Since that time things have changed but not as one would think.God has been disciplining me by waking me each morning to take time to spend with Him in His Word and in prayer. I came across 1 Timothy 4:8 - "For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come."
While I failed at the physical exercise program I set for myself, God had a better plan for me. The time spent each morning has brought much to me in terms of closeness to God the Father. He has made Himself so real to me on a daily basis that each day brings an excitement or two as I look forward to my encounters with God.
I love the simple things and appreciate them so very much. Here are a few examples. I was experiencing spasms of my diaphragm and had a real problem breathing due to shortness of breath. A Gregorian chant was playing in the background at my osteopath's office as I sat waiting for him to help me to my car. I had my eyes closed. My mouth was open trying to get in air. It was a struggle. My breathing was rapid but I was going no where! He asked me if I wanted to go to the ER. "No way." said I. I knew it wasn't my heart and told him so when he suggested he call an ambulance. An idea was implanted in my head - pray in tongues. I began immediately. The effect was fantastic. My struggle decreased. My mouth closed. The spasms didn't stop, just decreased in intensity, but it gave me time to relax as much as possible before making the walk to my car. I was quite joyful as I slid into the driver's seat - still huffing and puffing but sure in the knowledge that God was with me and I was on my way home.
I don't understand a lot of what and why things happen to me but I figure it's for someone else's benefit. My last CT scan I had my hands intwined above my head. It wasn't a long procedure. I knew when I was coming out that my body had gone into a stiffening mode. I told the attendant I could not move and he would have to sit me up. He managed to do that. I asked if he would try to get my arms down as the pain in the muscles was most uncomfortable. He couldn't. It took a few more minutes and they finally came down with my elbows finally bending, but my hands were deeply clenched together. The arms were still in a stiff mode even after they came down. They had to get me into a wheel chair as I was like a block of cement. They put my in the small waiting room nearby. The main attendant was nervous. I tried to reassure him that position had set it off and it would end on its own when it felt like it. He wanted me to go to the ER. "No way! Please call my husband and tell him I will be later than I thought."
He called my husband and told him he was bringing me to the ER. My husband tried to convince him I was all right and would come out of it, but to no avail. He came back and saw I had slipped sideways in the chair. Out comes a roll of tape and he taped me into the chair! When he went to move me, he saw my right foot was on the floor but could not bend to be put on the wheelchair so out came the tape and he taped my right leg to my left leg! What a sight it must have been! We are in the hospital as far away from the ER as one could have been. During this time I was at peace, just slightly annoyed at having to go to the ER.
Once there they really didn't know what to do with me. I tried to tell them to call my osteopath and gave them his cell number. One doctor came in and said they were going to give me IV fluids and check my potassium level. Another doctor said they were going to give me benedryl. That would not have been good as benedryl makes me hyper and my muscles couldn't contract any more than they were. After being there two hours nothing had been done and I was slowly coming out of my stiffening. The worst thing about it is my hands are always the last to let go. Finally it happened. I got off the bed and onto my crutches looking for a bathroom. On my way back I passed my nurse. He said he was getting my discharge papers ready and I replied, " I'm going to faint." I made it to the bed - well, the upper half of me made it on the bed and out I went. Then things began to happen. After being pulled up on the bed completely, being given oxygen, and having an EKG, I really just wanted to get out of there. They moved me to another spot. I asked about my discharge and the nurse finally showed up and said he didn't feel I was looking too well and he would wait a little longer. God was merciful and I didn't lose my patience or sense of humor. I kept my peace. I have no clue why or what that was all for. I know He was with me because wiithout Him I would have been demanding and obnoxious, sorry to say. Was that what it was all for, for me to see Him at work in me?
Thankfulness has become a larger part of my life since this change has been progressing. Twice yesterday God saved me from two near collisions. He has me back with my osteopath after he took a three year break. This man is so talented and I so appreciate medicine without pills. He has wisdom and understanding greater than the majority of doctors. I have hope that God will work through him to bring my body into a state of health that exceeds what has been done the past three years. I am thankful.
Last week I saw God at work and it was incredible. He had me reading in Romans 9-11. Several things stood out as I have a Jewish daughter-in-law. Every day I read those chapters gleaning a little bit more each day. At Wednesday night Bible study, the leader drew a box and wrote the word God inside it. We discussed that quite a bit. On Sabbath we had a guest from Scotland and he mentioned things from Romans 9-11 and putting God in a box! I could hardly stay in my chair I was so excited. Only God could weave such beautiful things.
He has been encouraging me that I do hear Him. I was signing in at a doctor appointment. I noticed the woman who signed before me must have arrived seconds before I did even though her appointment wasn't for another half hour and I arrived right on time for mine. The nurse came out and took her first. I felt the garbage in my heart - the anger, the injustice, the offense - and I wanted to say something to the receptionist after all my appointment was scheduled first. God began scolding me. "What are you getting bent out of hape for?"
"It's not fair. It's not right. I was scheduled first."
"What did you pray about this morning?"
"I prayed I would have peace and be attentive to the doctor and not get bent out of shape."
"Do you have peace?"
"Are you bent out of shape?"
"This is why you have to wait. You were not ready to go see the doctor and have it be as you prayed."
The yuck didn't feel very good. I had Practicing the Presence of God by brother Lawrence in my hands. I asked God where I should read. He directed me to a section entitled - "The Means of Acquiring the Presence of God". As I read it over and over again, the yuck began to turn to repentance and finally peace and joy.
Shortly thereafter I was called in and, as the last patient, I think he actually spent a little more time with me. This doctor is most kind and likes his patients to be informed. Before he operated on my husband he brought in a computer and showed us a program that explained exactly what he would be doing. Knowledge dispels fear. The fact his last name is Hosanna also helps!