34 Years on a Roll

WheelyPOP

I wasn’t going to mention “The Anniversary” to anyone but Linda. I was hoping no one would remember. But from the moment I rolled out of the house, there have been fresh reminders of so many blessings that it would be sinful for me to keep my mouth shut.

Since publishing the book Linda and I have had some amazing experiences. Some were absolutely brutal and others have been blessings beyond reasonableness.  I’m not sure we would have recognized some of the wonderful, if not for the benefit of contrast that sometimes comes through pain.

Much to share in the future but today is about inexplicable joy and overwhelming gratitude.

I’ve had the privilege of telling our story so many times and in so many places I’ve lost count. (I’m currently interviewing candidates to serve as my quadriplegic stunt double!)

After every opportunity… without exception… at least one person has either called, emailed or personally shared something horrific they were living with. I’ve learned that all of us have BROKEN PARTS. It seems the things that hurt the most are not visible to the naked eye. Many have shared heartache and I would not swap places with anyone I’ve met.

The world is broken. Loneliness seems to be at epidemic proportions.

What separates me from every one I’ve met?  Why do I have a story worth sharing?

SIMPLE = MY LOVED ONES.

For 12,411 days in a row I have been dependent on other people for literally helping me stay alive. At times the help I need is personal, embarrassing and humiliating. It may sound dramatic but it’s my reality. Most of the heavy lifting has been taken care of gracefully by Linda. We’ve also been blessed on occasion when people recognize Linda’s weariness and volunteer to pitch in.

But if you know anything about me at all you know we have done much more than simply exist.

EVERYTHING that is worth ANYTHING in my life is due to the grace provided by others.

Having my burdens carried by others began on the bottom of the lake when I cried out to THE FRIEND who loved me the most, knew me most intimately, and had sacrificed His all to pay for my worst. He was there in an instant and took every bit of my fear and burden upon Himself and replaced my mess and my train wreck with a peace that is impossible to comprehend. I had become the kind of friend to Him that only reached out when I needed something. Yet He came in an instant.  Amazing friend.

This side of heaven the thing that probably puts me on my face, humbles me, strengthens me and gives me the most joy is the realization that God has surrounded me with people that love me very much the way He does.

 When you have a friend that is trustworthy with the worst parts of you, you have a friend to“do-life” with.

If you’ve never gone through a period when you stunk it up and became an absolute train wreck due to your own stubborn pride and hard heartedness… Just keep living. The people in your life that are disappointed, angry and even blow up on you, but continue to love you, are the ones to cherish.

If you have heard me speak or read the book you know I talk pretty openly about some of the struggles and heartache. Well, truth be told I left out many episodes and cleaned up some of the hard details. I’ve come to realize that by doing this it is impossible to fully understand the extent of which friends, family and sometimes acquaintances stepped up for me…. I’ll save that for another day.

The only thing about the book I’m certain I got 100% right was the title. I know the path to joy begins with a humble brokenness, but my heart is bent toward hardness and at times it needs radical surgery. It is so easy to accumulate possessions, places and people that will suck the joy out of your life and try to bury you when you stumble. These accumulations can deceive, manipulate and take you places you thought impossible. These need to be pruned and amputated and that seems to be the recurring theme of my life.

I have never been the victim of anyone but myself. I know better but I am prone to wander and accumulate.

Pruning is painful but it clears the view and helps you see things more clearly. It also makes room for The Best.

Gracious Lord, thank you for gently breaking me and for pruning me.  Thank you for helping me clearly recognize the precious treasures in my life. Help me to be a blessing to them like they are to me! Thank you for giving me 34 wonderful years and help me live whatever’s left in a way that would be pleasing to you and a blessing to others.

“I had only heard of you before, but now I have seen you with my own eyes. I take back everything I said, and I sit in dust and ashes to show my repentance.” Job 42:5 – 6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1 Comment
  1. We were young married members at Whitehaven Baptist when you were injured. I remember that day. I remember praying for you and your family and being amazed at how you were the encourager to all who visited. I remember laughing with your mother that they could dress you for the wedding the night before and not have to worry about getting you ready for the ceremony. I’ve watched from a distance and kept up through mutual friends. Yu have no idea that you were a great source of inspiration and comfort to me when we were dealing with our son Wiliam losing both his legs to a roadside bomb in Iraq. Reflecting back on you and your family gave me encouragement so many times during those months of healing and rehab. Just thought you might like to know that our divine encounter at WBC has had far reaching effects. Thank you Scott for being “Best When Broken”.

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