God’s Got This

This Christmas Eve will mark the two-year anniversary of my massive brain hemorrhage and 36-day hospitalization.

While I am now 100% recovered, it’s a severe understatement to say that things didn’t look good for me in the hours and days that followed my “incident.” My dad, who is himself a medical professional, took one look at my brain scans on his arrival at the hospital and shook his head saying, “he’s not going to make it.”

This dour appraisal seemed to be a common assessment. Most people thought that if I did somehow manage to pull through, I’d be at least partially disabled for the rest of my life. I am told, however, that there was a voice of hope in that rather melancholic hospital room. Over the next few weeks I had some severe ups and downs—most of which I don’t even remember—but through it all, my youngest brother remained confident, continuously reassuring everyone that “God’s got this.”

As it turns out, he was right. I have for well over a year been back to my usual activities, teaching, writing, driving, working out, and doing all of the other things that two years ago it seemed I would never be able to do again. God was in charge of the situation. He always is.

Oftentimes it seems that we look to God as a last resort. When all else has failed, we throw up our arms and say things like, “Well, it’s in God’s hands now.” We forget that everything’s always in God’s hands.  We also forget that there’s no better place for it to be.

Now of course not all tragic stories end as happily as mine did. Not even close. We can’t always understand why God allows situations to play out the way they do. I’ve certainly had plenty of my own heartfelt prayers go unanswered over the course of my life, and it’s easy to see how others might grow resentful or discouraged when theirs seem to fall on deaf ears as well.

But while God won’t always direct events the way we’d like them to go, He is always in charge, and He knows far better than we ourselves what we need and what is best for us. It’s a lesson that I’ve been slowly learning and one that has brought significantly more peace to my life. And while I still get frustrated and impatient far too often when things don’t go the way I’d like them to, I’ve learned to ease some of the pressure and lighten some of the darkness of various situations by repeating my little brother’s confident words from my hospital room:

God’s got this.

God’s always got this.

hospital-1802679_960_720

Our Luxurious Lives

A few months back I wrote a post called “Our Land of Plenty” in which I reflected on the superabundance of food available to us in the United States. I pointed out that we today have access to a greater amount and greater variety of food than the people of any other civilization in the entire history of the world.

In this post, I’d like to continue on that theme by calling attention to how luxurious modern western life really is.

While there are always going to be some discomforts, our lives in the United States today are more comfortable than almost any other people’s from Continue reading

It’s Already Been a Year

Well, it’s official. This post marks the one-year anniversary of my blog.

This project started out as a way for me, in the wake of my medical issues in early 2016, to keep people informed about how my recovery was going and to share my thoughts about the process so that I wouldn’t go crazy.

I had also hoped that having a blog would help me to be a more disciplined writer, which I think it has done, as I have been successfully Continue reading

The Last Hurrah of Summer

Where has my summer gone? It seems every single one flies by faster than the one before it.

I began preparing my fall semester classes the same week spring semester ended, and I’ve been focused on that planning for all of May, June, and July. Then, about ten days ago, I realized that school was again upon us, and that instead of feeling refreshed after a nice, long summer break, I felt totally burned out. I realized that if I wanted to survive until Christmas—not always and easy feat for me—I would need to at least take a few days off to recharge my “batteries” before the start of the new school year.

I had a lot of options as to how to spend my “vacation” time, because I have a to-do list that I know will still be twelve miles long by the time I die, but since I was trying to relax a bit, I wanted to do something slightly less productive. Thus, I chose to Continue reading

The Lesson of Diapers and Toys

On two separate evenings this past week, I found myself roped into moving a massive pile of boxes across town. Moving in and of itself wasn’t at all a new experience for me, but moving what was in those boxes was.

The cardboard crates in question contained hundreds of pounds of diapers and blankets and car seats and toys. I and the other volunteers—most of whom I’d never met before—loaded the tender cargo into the backs of trailers, pickup trucks, and mini-vans, and then Continue reading

A Higher Call

“It’s probably the best book I’ve ever read,” my dad told me.

“It’s really, really good,” my brother Phil confirmed.

Though I’d purchased the World War II aviation story for both my dad and brother after being drawn to its intriguing dust jacket at Barnes and Noble, I’d not yet found the chance to read it for myself. However, once I opened its pages, I understood exactly Continue reading