I’m a little late in posting today … but I’ve been kind of pondering this post in my head for a day or two. I could subtitle today’s thoughts –
“When God Forces Quiet Upon You”.
Have you ever been forced to be quiet?! I guess we do that sometimes to our children or students – “Sit down and be quiet!!” … As adults, we can get sidelined by an illness or bed rest. Seldom are we just quiet willingly or even have the opportunity because we are so busy. It is in that quiet that we can hear God … if we turn off our mind’s voice and just listen for Him.
Last year on October 5, God forced my husband to be quiet. Many friends and long-time blog followers know the story: Daniel had resigned as our Christian school’s administrator after seven years, effective August 2012, and found himself unexpectedly unemployed. To try to pay the bills, he worked for a friend’s contractor, doing odd jobs around a construction site. On Friday morning, while standing on a ladder, staining 2nd story windows, the ladder slid down, and Daniel fell about 18 feet with it.
While we are thankful that he was not paralyzed or worse, his left lower leg bones (fibula and tibia) were shattered from the impact, and his ankle was grossly dislocated. An ambulance took him to our local hospital, but the orthopedic surgeon there would not keep him and sent him on to the University of Missouri Medical Center, about a 2 hour drive away. We are so thankful for this decision as we had an amazing ortho-trauma surgery team there!!
Upon arriving at the hospital that night, Daniel was immediately taken to the OR for a short procedure to put his ankle back into joint. This had to be done under anesthesia because the pain would have been too great to do otherwise as they had to use great force in an already traumatized area. As Daniel was coming back to, I got to the ER … and soon we heard the prognosis for the injury: potentially never jogging or jumping again, no guarantees that they could repair the splintered bones completely, and many other daunting long-term effects.
Daniel had surgery the next morning for phase one of the repair and was left with an “external fixator” which was meant to hold the leg completely still until the swelling went down and a second surgery could be done 2 weeks later. This meant complete bed rest for 2 weeks.
God had forced QUIET upon Daniel … and in many ways, as his main caretaker, on me too. However, this was meant for our good, and I look back in amazement at how calmly we were able to go through all this and how easily we accepted each fact that was presented to us as the days went by. God’s grace …
For a man who is used to getting up early and working steadily all day long, complete bed rest is a little daunting … but at this time in our lives, complete bed rest and being home bound was actually something that we NEEDED without realizing it! But God knew!
Now, having a broken leg is probably one of the most BORING things you will ever experience:
However, we were blessed with a season of family bonding. We were homeschooling our children at the time, and as a former educator, my husband was very helpful in studying with the kids. It also gave us a lot of hours to talk and pray. We had just come off of a very hard, emotional experience of giving up a job that he loved and were facing uncertainty for the future as the job offers weren’t exactly rolling in either! We were able to re-hash the past, which served almost as therapy for us … and we were able to talk about what we really wanted for our future, especially since we were seriously considering moving our family.
It isn’t often that I get to just be quiet … and I sometimes joke that I just WISH someone would tell me to take a week of bed rest or quarantine me to my house, but I know from those who have been through it, it isn’t all it is cracked up to be. At least now I know, having experienced it somewhat that when God does force us to be quiet it isn’t without a reason! In fact, everything He does is for a reason … we just need to be quiet and willing to let Him do His perfect work.
PS After the second surgery on October 18, 2012, Daniel’s prognosis for recovery was much better than first expected! We are now one year into a projected 2 year healing process, and the surgeon is optimistic that this time next year, Daniel can jump and play a game of pick-up basketball! Even go jogging, if he is ever inclined to do so again … God has been our Great Physician – and has done a lot of healing through this incident, not only of Daniel’s leg but also of our broken hearts.