Lessons From an Incredibly Sore Stomach

I rarely get sick, but yesterday I woke up feeling a bit queasy and it steadily grew worse over the day.  By supper I was ready to woof my waffles.  As best as I can figure, I either have the flu or food poisoning (had some red hot chicken wings for lunch on Wednesday….).  It was not pretty last night.  I had to miss my son’s hockey game.  I stayed home and lay on the couch, getting up only to stumble to the bathroom. 

Then, as though God was punishing me for always being the guy who likes the house cool, I got the chills.  I couldn’t stop shaking for 30 minutes and I threw a sweatshirt on and put every blanket in the bed overtop of me.  I was still cold.  Even lying down didn’t make me feel better. 

This morning I feel marginally better, but it got me thinking.  I can’t remember the last time I had to go to bed because I was sick with something.  It must have been years. 

I am so used to independence…being able to do things for myself and for others.  Sam got me ginger ale last night.  Toni went out and got me meds. I could basically just lie there and hope I warmed up.  Eventually, Jordan Sam and Toni all came in and we had good, long conversations.  That was great.

Spiritually, we’re all supposed to be dependent on God. I catch myself often and wonder whether I am doing things for God or whether I am doing things in God, in His strength.  As a write that as an A type personality, I’m not even sure I know what that means.

I always thought Jesus’ last words to Peter were weird.  Look at this exchange.

“I tell you the truth, when you were young, you were able to do
as you liked; you dressed yourself and went wherever you wanted to go.
But when you are old, you will stretch out your hands, and others will
dress you and take you where you don’t want to go.”

Jesus said this to let him know by what kind of death he would glorify God. Then Jesus told him,

“Follow me.” [john 21.18-19]

I’m not sure I’d be happy if those were the words Jesus "blessed" me with.

Yet there is something to dependence that is amazing.  At new levels, you open yourself to others.  You open yourself to God. 

I expect to feel better later today (I still can’t stand being sick)…but somehow I hope I keep thinking about these things.


  1. Allen Forget on November 23, 2007 at 12:04 pm

    Wow did this post ever strike a chord with me, not to mention the scripture. It got me thinking about my grandmother who past away two weeks ago after surviving a stroke 4 years ago that left her unable to walk, unable to use the entire right side of her body and unable to speak. She had such an influence on me as she was the musical patriarch of our family and left a lasting impression on everyone she came near. both from her love of music and her love of God
    It got me thinking about the incredible dependence she had to have on my Mom who retired from nursing and took her in to care for her. My grandmother, like you and I, was a fiercely independent women and suddenly she had to rely completely on someone else for her very existence. Over the years we all taught ourselves to communicate with her and I began to get the sense that she was learning something from all that had happened to her. As I saw her days before she left us I was struck by her calmness, as if she was already prepared to give everything up to God because it was familiar to her.
    Your post made me realize that God may have been using her to teach us about what it means to truly have dependence on Him and to let go of our inhibitions and control over ourselves so that we can truly see Him for all that He is.
    As we sat around days before her funeral I played the song “ Amazing Grace, My Chains are Gone” by Chris Tomlin on my guitar and everyone in the room stopped and listened, cried, then realized that her chains were gone and she was “set free”. My Mom requested that I play it at her funeral. I prayed for this as it is difficult to play something like this at a time when emotions run high. God gave me strength and I do not think I ever sang that any better.
    I think Jesus was trying to tell Peter to let go of his control of himself and follow Jesus by giving him an indication of what would come to him in the future. Here’s a thought, How would knowing our future change the way we make decisions of faith today? How would you change your life if Jesus said to you “ You will have to rely on others and me later on in life so why not choose to do so now”?

  2. Tim L. Walker on November 23, 2007 at 10:21 am

    Hope you're feeling better soon!

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