Tag Archives: Disability

Longing for the fleshpots of Egypt

Ex. 16:1   They set out from Elim, and all the congregation of the people of Israel came to the wilderness of Sin, which is between Elim and Sinai, on the fifteenth day of the second month after they had departed from the land of Egypt. 2 And the whole congregation of the people of Israel grumbled against Moses and Aaron in the wilderness, 3 and the people of Israel said to them, “Would that we had died by the hand of the LORD in the land of Egypt, when we sat by the meat pots and ate bread to the full, for you have brought us out into this wilderness to kill this whole assembly with hunger.”

I find myself longing to go on disability again, from time to time.  When things get crazy, when the pressure is on, when I feel like I can’t handle all of the stress, I long for the fleshpots of Egypt.  “Would that I could go back to lying around sleeping all day!  Would that I could go back to no responsibilities, free to do whatever I want or feel!  Would that I could ignore my family, my wife, my children, my church, my friends, my everything!  Oh things would be so much better then!”

Have you felt that way?  I have.  I get that way when the going gets tough.  I get that way when I just plain don’t want to deal with the stuff of life.  I want to run.  I want to hide.  I want people to LEAVE ME ALONE and not bother me. Oh how I long for the good ole’ days of being sick.

Of course, what I forget is the despair which was my constant companion.  I forget not being able to move, feeling like I lived in molasses, and that I couldn’t string two thoughts together.  I forget that I couldn’t be in a “crowd” of more than about one person.  I forget the suicidal thoughts, the darkness that covered me, and the utter impotence of life under the weight of depression.  I forget these things only too easily.

God has blessed me with healing and hope.  He has given my a family who loves me, a church who loves me, and many friends who have been there through everything.  He has given me all of this, and more.  He has given me His Son, who has gone down into the depths of despair and abandonment for me.  He has given me His Holy Spirit, who comforts me when I am faint, and who prays with me and for me, even if I have not the words.  All this and more He gives me.

What He gives to me, He gives to you.  Do not be afraid of the darkness.


Out of the Depths


Good Friday is really about life for me. Two years ago Good Friday, I was sitting at home, preparing for my minimal role in services. I had been on disability for about 2 months, and things were going fairly well. I got a phone call from the people that handle disability claims at our insurance company. They were just calling to inform me that since I had shown “some” improvement according to my doctor, that they were taking me off disability.

This began a series of events that I can only describe as surreal. I began a downward spiral that brought be to being suicidal. It was a gift from God that we had the divine service that day, for without that, I don’t know what I would have been doing. My pastor stayed with me as much as possible. I was a zombie, barely conscious, yet fully believing that there was no way I could get out of this, no way I could recover from such a blow. If I didn’t have the time and space I needed to heal, then I would only get worse. What was the point?

But God is merciful.

I lived.  Somehow our Lord got me through the Great Three Days.   After Easter I went to stay with some dear friends for a couple weeks to rest and try to recover some level of sanity and normalcy.  Things got better.  It took a long time, with setbacks along the way and all kinds of other gunk to go through, but things did get better.

So Good Friday for me is about life.  It’s about that life God gives to each one of us.  It’s about the Life that was given for my life.   It’s about the gift of seeing my children grow up, having friends and family who care deeply for us, and it’s about the ongoing work that our Lord does to keep us in the faith all the days of our lives.  No matter how dark the road.

A blessed Good Friday to you.