We’ve had several challenges this week.
CHALLENGE – SEWER LINE BROKE
The sewer line needs to be repaired at the property my father built. Its disconnect has caused repeated toilet backups for the people living there. I thought I had insurance coverage for this but learned I had not renewed it. That’s a big financial hit!
CHALLENGE – SLEEP APNEA
Second, Don was diagnosed with sleep apnea. He has been dealing with debilitating fatigue, and learning the reason was an answer to prayer.
At the same time, there is a four to six-month backlog to get a CPAP. We are praying for an interim way to increase his breathing at night. As the doctor said, “You can be a good sleeper but not a good breather.” Evidently that’s my honey.
CHALLENGE – DISCOURAGEMENT
We were quite discouraged this morning after hearing about this backlog. En route to get his hearing aids checked (one has not worked for the past month), I said, “So how do we thank God with this delay?” We pondered the thought. We agreed we are grateful to understand why Don is so fatigued.
CHALLENGE – HEARING CENTER
At the hearing center, the doctor tested his aids and sure enough, the left earpiece is TOT – totally dead (“Tot” is a German word for dead). The good thing is she said they now recommend every patient has two sets so they have a backup. And, they want to retest him before sending a second set of hearing aids to see if his hearing has changed, which he thinks it has since Covid.
Interestingly, Dr. Waller said there are a number of studies being done which do seem to show a correlation between Covid and hearing changes.
So, the left earpiece went back for a replacement and Don will use an old, minimally effective aid in the left ear until we get the new one.
CHALLENGE – “BE THANKFUL IN ALL THINGS”
Imagine your hearing depleting in a third-world country, your oxygenation being insufficient for a day’s energy, or your inability to hear. You might never find answers or resolution and simply have to live with those issues.
“Don, these are definitely first-world problems,” I said. He nodded. So, while we will look for interim solutions to the breathing issue, we are still thankful. God tells us to be “thankful IN all things,” not necessarily “FOR all things.”
I shared Don’s need with our church prayer line. Sunday morning Virginia, head of our prayer team, stopped me. “Pat rented a machine ‘til hers came in. Call Pat.” This may be an answer for us! Somehow I knew if I shared the need with the Body of Christ someone would give us a direction to follow, and here it is!
How about you? Are you struggling to find hope or gratitude in some situation you face? I’d love to hear about it, and to pray for you. Feel free to reach out in the comments or to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CHALLENGE – REJOICE IN THE LORD ALWAYS
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.” Philippians 4:4 ESV
There are lots of times when I don’t feel like rejoicing. I’m tired, overwhelmed by deadlines, financial hits, family challenges. But rejoicing is a choice. https://www.carolloewen.com/thanksgiving-in-all-things/
Blair Parke says “Philippians 4:4 has the apostle Paul telling the church of Philippi, in a letter, to always rejoice in the Lord, always celebrate the Lord. This carries the understanding that you do it whether you want to or not, whether you are happy with the Lord or not. When you celebrate with the right thought in mind about how God works, it will be possible to find ways to rejoice in the Lord.” https://www.biblestudytools.com/bible-study/topical-studies/how-can-i-rejoice-in-the-lord-always.html
May God help us to meet these challenges with grateful hearts for the God who loves us through each of them. Knowing Him is the best, and highest, challenge we face in life, as well as in death!