Points to Ponder: Going up While You're Down

Points to Ponder
Going up While You're Down
By Pastor Whitmore
Weekly Contributing Writer

The high school senior was rushed to the hospital with serious leg injuries received during soccer practice. There was surgery involving pins and screws and plates. All of this hardware would be with him through the front end of his senior year. He would then spend the balance of it going through rehab and learning to walk again.
Every year I see prayer requests for boys and girls, men and women, who have suffered a life-altering injury. We cringe as we imagine the pain from the initial impact and then the painful days yet to come in recovery from it. Many times these tragedies will be dream breakers. Senior year on crutches is not a picture most young people have of themselves. All kinds of other future plans are usually directly connected to the dream that was crushed in one moment by an accident or injury.
On the face of it, we see a sad state of affairs. What good is there in this? "Everything is ruined!" or "It's just not fair!" These are normal reactions to a debilitating loss.
As I was reading a prayer request about just such a case, I saw something different in the sad news. Right at that moment I realized that I was reading the history of a man's life; a recently published "first draft" (so to speak) of a chapter in his life. This particular man is still a boy right now; however, this incident, which has prompted a call for prayers, is actually a construction site. It's often in moments like these that a person will come to a spiritual fork in the road. One path will take him closer to God; the other will be a turn away from Him. Which will he choose?
The old saying is that sometimes God will let you fall flat on your back so that you'll lookup. It's not that He's out there "zapping" people. It's just a simple fact that most people don't even think of God when times are good. It's usually when we are down that finally He has our attention. When we're in pain, that's often when we intentionally look for Him. The healing of an injured person is certainly the goal for which we pray. But, along the way toward that healing, what kind of person is he/she becoming? When your body has been set still for a while, it gives your soul a chance to stop and look around, to take in the conditions of where it currently resides. We are so busy. We raise our children to adopt this same frenetic pace we live; slaves to a packed schedule, running from one obligation to the next. But then when trouble comes, or injury sidelines you, have you noticed that those things that were so important tend to go on without you?
You can get a lot farther in life while being still than you will by constantly running. An injured young athlete can be an adult under construction. Tending to deeper, foundational parts of the soul is the work that will score points in the game of life up ahead. Points that count in the game that matters.
"Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep Your word. You are good, and do good; teach me Your statutes. (Psalm 119:67-68)
When you are down, it is the opportune time to look up, to see the deeper things. Expect to find a wealth of wisdom during these times. And you will.
"It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I may learn Your statutes. The law of Your mouth is better to me than thousands of coins of gold and silver." (Psalm 119:71-72)

Hilltop Christian Fellowship, 12624 Trinity Church Drive, Clear Spring. Listen to Rev. Whitmore on WJEJ-1240 AM, Tues and Thurs at 10:45 a.m. & p.m. & Wed at 10:45 a.m. www.hilltopchristianfellowship.com.