I have been drug-free for a whole week. Until last Thursday evening I was popping pills left and right … pain killers, steroids, and muscle relaxants. I had to do something to mask my back pain. I was living in a fog.
My doctor had a novel idea, one I had heard many times before. He suggested physical therapy, PT. That always sounded like work and time and money. Pills were easier, less expensive, and increasingly ineffective. But, physical therapy?
My new buddy Donnie at Ogle County Physical Therapy has me walking 95% upright and nearly pain free for the first time in months, perhaps years. As an added bonus my head is no longer in the clouds. My kidneys are no longer yelling, “Spare me!”
Donnie has me doing all kinds of simple exercises. Stretch here, stretch there, move this, rotate that. Of course, I have to continue doing exercises at home twice a day for 20 minutes.
Donnie told me the other day that I have the second tightest set of hamstrings he has ever seen in all of his years of doing PT. Of course, I had to ask, “Who was the worst?” He told me it was a 92 year old woman. I think I blushed.
One of Donnie’s hopes it that I will eventually be able to touch my toes or, at worse, my ankles. Right now I can touch my knee caps. I am still in a bad way.
For 32 years, since a car tangled with me on my bicycle, I resisted PT. I have always been active. I mow the yard, plant flowers, pull weeds, run the vacuum, and walk around the block. Surely, I could be fine without PT!
Just last month I was walking 2-3 hours a day while at the beach. My thighs and calves had definition. (So does my stomach, but not the kind you brag about!) But my back was on the fritz, the worse it has been since my major back surgery 20 years ago.
PT was the answer. I already feel better, have more energy, am not in a fog, and no longer pop pills to mask my pain and propel me through the day.
I really thought I was doing well, until Donnie showed me the difference.
It has me wondering.
Many Christians think they are doing well, but deep down they are hurting.
Yes, they make church every two weeks or so, offer a rote blessing before dinner, tell people they will pray for them, and crack open the Bible every once in a while. But these activities are frequently shallow and perfunctory.
I see lots of Christians who need Spiritual Therapy, ST. They manage to get by, to survive with minimal contact with their Lord and Savior. Their Pastor suggests ST, spend 20 minutes each day following a daily devotional, reading scripture, and praying to God.
Better yet, do it twice a day, once when you rise and once when you lie down.
This is what Donnie suggested. Twenty minutes a day, twice a day, and my body feels like a million dollars.
I see Christians who are barely getting by. Periodically, they drop in for worship or a few minutes with the pastor, hoping for a quick fix. It works for a while, but they soon begin to hurt and start scrambling for the pills. Eventually, they will pop in for church or shoot me a text, asking for another boost.
I oblige them, advise them, and console them. They are appreciative, but the heart pain, the unexplained loneliness, and the aching deep within their soul soon returns.
They resist doing any ST, just as much as I resisted PT.
My pig-head-ness left me in pain for years.
Why did I resist for so long?
Your soul will be most appreciative if you gave it some ST everyday!
Amen, we were talking about the same thing last night in my small group. We are reading Spiritual Pilgrims, Carl Jung and Theresa Avila.