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Thursday, August 7, 2008

RECOVERY

Hello Friends! As we look at our lives and families again today, I would like to talk with you about the concept of Recovery. I write this as I lay on my couch recovering from knee surgery. I know, I should be resting, but hey, you get to read what I write and think when on Oxycodone. Oooooo... this could be raw :0

Actually the real reason I wanted to write about Recovery is because Rene and I just celebrated 14 years of marriage yesterday. During these years, one of the most important skills we have had to learn is the concept of recovery. To define it, "the ability to heal follow an injury or surgical procedure." In marriage these injuries/procedures take the form of insults, criticisms, hurt feelings, corrective conversations, etc... Marriages and families that last over the long-haul are those who learn to recover from such events.

As I lay here with my leg elevated, let me suggest a few ways in which recovery has allowed Rene and I to make it this far in our happy home (most of the time :) ).

1. REST WITH PURPOSE: Whether it is getting your 8 hrs per night, taking time as husband and wife (w/o the kids), a date with your kids individually, or simply going on a long walk or fishing trip to unwind and refocus, rest with purpose is important. Rest is not an excuse to be lazy, but allows you to fulfill your God-give roles to your max. With out rest YOU CAN'T. Proper rest allows you to deal with the injuries when then come... and believe me they come, no matter how good a marriage or family you have.

2. WORK TOWARD HEALTH: Health doesn't just happen, it takes work. In the fitness world, there is a emphasis that is being place on what is called "Injury Prevention." This includes everything from stretching, to core-exercises to calisthenics. Your marriage and family life will get sick and unhealthy if you don't take the steps necessary to work toward health. These are the investments we make into important relationships in life. Are you investing wisely?

3. MANAGE PAIN: Pain and injuries are part of the game we call family. Proverbs says, "It is to a man's benefit to overlook an offense." Don't take me wrong, this doesn't mean you should be a "doormat," but we should extend much grace to those we love. GRACE mixed with ASSERTIVENESS could be the two most important elements you could include. There is no pill you can take for this pain, but you can "Take it to the Lord in Prayer."

4. KNOW YOUR SIGNS: Don't worry, I most certainly don't mean your horoscope. In fact, I would suggest staying far away from this God-less practice. How do you know when you've been injured, offended or hurt in a relationship or by the circumstances in life. Sometime it is obvious (i.e., spouses affair, family member dying, being fired from a job) but other times it may not be so obvious. Knowing your signs is much like knowing the indicator lights on the dashboard of your vehicle. While I unfortunately possess an embarrassing little amount of knowledge about automobiles, I have learned to read the red-light on my dashboard that tell my my oil is low, or my coolant needs filled. Without these lights, I would be clueless. So, know your signs. The list could be endless, but see if you recognize any of the following:
- Anger, Depression, Sexual Temptation, Running to your parents, Overfunctioning, Depression, Fatigue or Sleepless Nights

5. HELP EACH OTHER: If you have every been through a surgical procedure of much significance then you quickly discover, You Need Others! Whether it is to remind you of your pain killers, get you a drink of water, or drive you home from the Hospital. We all need each other. Sometimes that "other" will be your spouse, or a friend, or a spiritual coach/pastor, or perhaps a professional counselor. God has designed us to need others.

And remember, often times during an injury this is a great time to re-connect with God. In fact, in every knee surgery I've had (this one marks #4) I have made the assumption that God is wanting to either teach me something special, strip something form my life that doesn't belong or simple develop more maturity in me. I don't blame Him for my pain and injury, I put my trust in Him and surrender my circumstance to the Great Teacher.

So... BOTTOM LINE: If you learn to recover well, you'll learn to live well! Where every you are at today, ENJOY THE JOURNEY TOGETHER!