Seeing others’ health changes self-attitude

A few weeks back, I walked into a grocery store. It is not a store I frequent often. However, I thought since I was nearby, I would stop in and look around.

Coming in the door I saw a woman with crutches and a big medical boot on her right leg. I commiserated with her on her condition, as that had been me in the past, although my shoulders wouldn’t let me use a crutch, but I used a walker. I told her she was lucky to be able to use crutches, and wished her well in her healing journey.

I know I have written in the past about my feet and right leg problems. After trying several different kinds of treatment, including surgery, I have for the most part simply made peace with my condition, and I have times when it really doesn’t bother me as much as other times.

I have a brace that I wear, especially during the painful times. All of the planting and extra activity I have had over the past few weeks has caused it to become more painful than usual. At times, I get down in the dumps over the complications caused by plantar fasciitis, neuropathy and the Achilles tendon in the right leg and foot.

So, after the short conversation with the other woman, I proceeded into the store, feeling a little unsettled and downtrodden. Then I saw a man, making his way out of the store, I’d guess he was in his 50s, and he was using crutches. I looked down, and even though his legs were covered by pants, I could tell that they were shriveled, and that every movement he made had to be done slow and determined.

I was immediately cut to the quick, and struck by how trivial my ailments were in comparison to his. Right then and there, I had a new attitude, a renewal of knowledge that no matter how difficult I think my situation is, there are others who go though much worse, and manage to get through each day with a smile on their face. Now, that is not to say I never get into the “poor me” doldrums; I try to keep busy and work on getting a renewed attitude.

More recently, we are seeing the sad devastation of the volcano eruption in Hawaii. That lava keeps on spilling out and traveling where it will. There is nothing anyone can do to stop the flow, and people have to leave their dream homes, or stay at the risk of their lives.

A friend and I were chatting about it the other day, and did God cause this? I simply said that I wouldn’t think that, but that it shows the power of God’s creation, be it a volcano, earthquake, tornado, or hurricane. As the old saying goes, man plans, but God smiles. In my opinion, we all have our “lava times,” be it the death of a loved one, or serious illness. All we can do is keep going, and trusting that God is in control.

So, a few lessons taught to me, I pray I remember them. Meanwhile, I will trust. Psalm 139:23-24 says; “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way of everlasting!”