Thursday, July 2, 2009
When Push Comes to Shove ~
I went to the chiropractor last week. And the week before that. And the one before that. I was starting to think that I had a broken neck or something else serious because I had been waking up with numb hands and aching shoulders. Don't get me wrong, I love my chiropractor and he is rather nice-looking - I just don't want to see him all the time. So I decided to see the massage therapist on his staff. At my appointment, I went in the room and it was nice and dim and there was nice relaxing music in the background. I was so looking forward to a nice relaxing massage before facing the rest of my day at work! The therapist came in with a smile on her face. She was a little gal with a cute little haircut and sweet spirit and I wondered if she was strong enough to get the knots out of my muscles. LOOKS CAN BE DECEIVING!!!!! I was lying there in the most vulnerable of states that any of us can be in when she started on my left shoulder. She dug her little thumbs right into the muscle of my shoulder and she didn't let go until she could hear the muscles popping and rolling under the pressure. She finally did stop and just when I thought I could breathe again, she started into the same spot with her elbow. All of her body weight went into fighting with this muscle that refused to give. She continued until she had tortured every muscle in my poor back, neck, and shoulders. Then she ordered me to turn over and, I swear, she was trying to pull my head right off of my body. Then in her sweetest voice she told me that time was up and I should rest for a bit before trying to stand up. I had to rest after that and I doubted seriously if I could even stand up! After I left her dark little relaxing room, I felt like I'd been through a rough workout and I was so sore I couldn't lay on my back for a couple of nights. On top of it all, my now-soft muscles were releasing toxins which were making me nauseous. But all of this was necessary. See, I didn't actually go to her to get one of those spa massages where they tickle you and lay hot stones on your back. I went because my muscles were so rigid that they refused to let the bones in my neck and shoulder work properly. They needed some rough manipulation to make them flexible and, in the end, I had much more energy and my bones managed to stay in line for more than a day.
Then I started thinking about my spiritual life. How many times I just wanted a quick fix to put things back in line or how I could skip the consequences of some mistake I had made if I could just rest a while. When it comes down to the bottom line, that isn't the way it works. God often requires us to be pushed and shoved back into the shape he wants us to be in. It is painful at the time and sometimes it produces toxins that we have to deal with for a little while. But in the end, our spirits are clean again and back in line with what God wants for us. I have no doubt that I will visit the chiropractor again and even the massage torturist. And I also have no doubt that God will pound on me over and over again to make me like Him. And in the end, I'll be glad for it. ~