Thursday, July 30, 2009


As I knelt to lift the last item into our motor home, the snap in my back threw me to my knees. I immediately knew, “I’m in trouble!” Scheduled to spend a week at Virginia Beach for a reunion, and then on to Florida and Wisconsin for conferences, my husband questioned, “What are we going to do?”

Not wanting to “ruin the plans”, I responded, “Let’s go! I’ll lie on the couch, let my muscles settle and I’ll be fine.” A quick prayer and we were on the road. For 1200 miles, I had a panoramic view of tree tops and utility poles, with hours to seek God’s wisdom!

By the time we arrived in Virginia, it was fairly comfortable to sit and walk short distances. A few days later, being careful to not “over-do it”, I ventured out on a short shuffle along the ocean.

The next morning, my muscles began to tighten, the discomfort intensified and I became increasingly immobile. Bedridden for 4 ½ days, my view was roof-tops to the left and the front-door of “our” beach house to the right.

The pain would occasionally bring tears to my eyes, but I wept mostly over how my plight might affect Gary’s time with family. Knowing my agony would not be conducive to fun-filled activity and desiring not to be the center of attention, I kept a low profile.

Considering it would help if I had back-support, I spotted Jesus Among Other Gods on my nightstand. Inch-by-inch, I slid the book under me. After a short period of slight relief, I concluded, “I’d much rather be reading this book!”

I was aware of Jesus’ nearness as I sang praises, prayed, watched clouds and enjoyed unfamiliar bird songs. However, with each passing day I watched as family members headed for the beach, laughter and excitement drifting through my window and into my longing heart. I wanted to share in the fun, but most importantly, I longed to connect hearts with loved-ones.

I became frustrated and angry with myself, others and God. I struggled against the temptation to find quick relief. Yet, it seemed that my Lord had something more important in mind.

Did I want this? Was physical and mental stillness the only way that I would not miss that which is more important to me than fun, family and even relief? I prayed, “Lord, give me strength to wait upon You!” and began to read Jesus Among Other Gods.

Pg 73 - “We are His temple. The Christian does not go to the temple to worship. The Christian takes the temple with him or her. Jesus lifts us beyond the building and pays the human body the highest compliment by making it His dwelling place, the place where He meets with us. Even today He would overturn the tables of those who make it a marketplace for their own lust, greed, and wealth.”

This motionless body of pain is His temple, the place where He dwells! He suffers with me? Are suffering and worship related? Should I always assume suffering isn’t His will and attempt to “pray it away” or can it lead to deeper worship?

Will I choose to worship Him for His wisdom in this situation or seek “quick relief” in the marketplace, exchanging His presence for luxurious beach houses, seductive beach wear, extravagant meals, barrels of intoxicating beverages and worldly affairs?

Pg 128 - “..if life is born out of sacredness, neither goodness nor love alone is the goal. It is reverence, and it must be chosen even when it is hard and costly. This kind of love is a choice to let the sanctity of life dictate the commitment of the will. This kind of reverential love can look upon suffering and see it beyond the clutches of time and through the victory of eternity.”

“Glorifying You is more important to me than all that this world has to offer. Thank You for setting me apart and giving me the ability to see through the suffering to the rewards which only You can offer.”

Whole-Heartedly, Bonnie

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