Our theme for this month: “You gotta keep dancing”
Our Bible verse for today: “Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; be persistent in prayer.” Romans 12:12 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Resolve to live well.”
Yesterday I introduced you to the story of Tim Hansel. After the rock-climbing accident that left him permanently disabled and in chronic pain for the rest of his life Tim had a decision to make. He had to decide how he was going to deal with his affliction and what kind of life he was going to lead from that point forward. He could live the rest of his life feeling sorry for himself and complaining; he could rely on massive amounts of drugs to kill the pain and dull his senses; or he could resolve to push through it as best he could and live life to the fullest under the prevailing circumstances. Tim chose life.
It wasn’t easy. In fact, it was hard. Very hard. Tim said he couldn’t remember a day when he woke up and felt good. The moment he opened his eyes the struggle began for that day.
He said one thing that helped tremendously was the examples of other people who were dealing with, or had dealt with, similar or even worse circumstances. The courageous examples of other people inspired him to deal with his own situation with courage and dignity and grace. He thought of those people as “everyday heroes who have chosen not to be victims but gallant fighters in spite of incredible odds.”
He also resolved that he would not allow his affliction and resulting challenges to define him. He would not make it the center of his life. Sometimes when people are dealing with difficult life issues it becomes all they think about, all they talk about. Tim decided not to do that. But he also decided he wouldn’t hide from it either. Sometimes people try to pretend the situation doesn’t exist (when it obviously does), and it becomes a forbidden topic of conversation. Here’s the balance Tim arrived at:
“There is a delicate balance between being honest and being overly dramatic. I want to admit struggle without giving way to despair. And I want the ultimate message to be positive without sounding pious or tinny.”
In other words, if there was a reason to talk about his constant physical pain, or if someone asked about it, he talked about it openly and honestly. But he didn’t make a big dramatic deal of it either. It simply was. That’s all. It’s just what the situation was, nothing more and nothing less.
The lesson for us from Tim’s example is that he accepted his situation and he resolved to deal with it well. He woke up each day and prayed for strength to handle the challenges with grace and dignity. He then leaned into it, pushed through it, and just lived life. That’s a pretty inspiring example for the rest of us.
May you have the courage and grace to live well today despite whatever challenges you may have to deal with.