Helping Others and Being Helped

I know how it feels to give care and to receive help. I got blessed to go to Montrose Christian Writers Conference the week of July 12-17, 2020. On July 11, we drove a number of hours to go to a wedding. I love hearing the vows and the reminders from the pastor to be kind to one another and to be quick to forgive. I always commit to treat my husband better at these celebrations.

We went to the wedding in the evening, and then to the reception. A lot of sitting in one day. We stayed at a hotel and then joined the family at church in the morning. We found a pew and the service lasted about 90 minutes.

            Then we drove to Montrose, PA a few hours away. When we stopped at a deli for lunch, we ate in the car because of COVID 19.

           After getting settled in to my room, and then eating supper, I headed to an introductory lecture by one of the faculty members-more sitting.

            Monday came and went with many classes, and three meals. With this pandemic, practicing social distancing in the dining area, we did not stand and interact as usual. We got our temperature taken first thing in the morning, wore masks and quickly found a seat.

When I awoke on Tuesday, after a quick shower, I began to get dressed when my back sent a jab of pain. I needed help to finish up, and being alone, I hobbled to an adjacent door. I knocked and when an instructor, Tiffany Amber Stockton answered, I thanked God!

            After she maneuvered the clothes and my leg, she asked if I was okay. She offered to stay with me, but I knew she had responsibilities, so she left.

            The day proceeded as the day before, but I sat and rose from my chair for the various events carefully. That night, just about ready for bed my back spasmed. Pain like I’ve never experienced hit.

            I opened the door and the lady across the hall empathized. She had gone through the same thing one week at Montrose and needed to pull herself up the stairs by means of the hefty railings. She gave me a natural muscle relaxant from her chiropractor and I borrowed ibuprofen. I’m not much for medicines and their side effects, but I didn’t ask any questions except for the amount to take.

            The contractions hit every three to five minutes and I froze like a statue as the waves of pain overwhelmed me. My neighbor asked if I’d like to go down stairs and speak to the director. She helped me get there. Some women visited in the lobby. The choices offered: go to the hospital or go home. On Tuesday night! Neither seemed right.

Common Spine Problems Explained With Pictures
Common Spine Problems Explained With …webmd.com

Another conferee offered to sleep in the spare bed in my room because I was warned the back stiffens overnight and the pain gets worse! Dear God. I told her no but I did say I’d call her if I needed to get up.

            She helped me twice and once, at 2:30 a.m. I didn’t want to bother her. To arise from bed without her arm for leverage made me realize I didn’t choose wisely.

            I didn’t hesitate to call around 7:00 a.m. and she praised me for calling and allowing her to help the night before. The next day I admitted the 2:30 a.m. blunder and she scolded me! I haven’t been reprimanded like that since I was a child. She said, “No wonder you were so much worse in the morning.”

            I missed Wednesday morning breakfast and the morning worship, plus the faculty presenter before our class began. Jeanette Levellie promised to throw chocolate candies to the audience and she gave lively talks earlier on. I stayed in bed under the comfy covers trying to find a position that didn’t hurt. The Executive Director’s wife stopped in and then brought me tea and buttered toast with jam and crackers. I didn’t want more.

            The pastor’s wife asking me to call her for assistance and her gentle care-even the talking to-from a relative stranger blew me away. What a demonstration of love!

            Then, around 9:30 a.m. I called my friend. She has the gift of faith, which, in my pain I had forgotten. As I prayed, I thought God was telling me to stay. So, I phoned her and said, “I hurt my back. I don’t know what to do, stay or go home, would you pray about it?”

            “Of course, you’re staying. We’re praying!”

            Isn’t it weird when pain overwhelms? I prayed and others prayed for peace and relief, but when I picked up the phone it didn’t occur to me to ask for God to heal me. That’s unusual.

            She asked me if I remembered the “Happy Hunter’s” from years ago. I did. When we held our hands on our hips and asked God to heal us, our body moved this way and that. They said God showed them. I wasn’t sure I wanted to move at all. My friend told me to put my hands on my shoulders and she prayed my muscles, ligaments, etc. would relax so we could pray the “Happy Hunter’s” prayer.

            I was willing, but I admit a little concerned. Then, my hips moved a fraction of an inch to either side and I felt something twinge gently in my back. The pain was about 95% gone! I changed clothes and went bopping down the stairs. I told myself to be careful!

            When I reached the lobby, some of the ladies from Tuesday night saw me. They came rushing over. “What happened?”

            “God healed me!”

            At the end of the week, one lady said, “Connie, I can’t believe the difference. Do you realize you looked gray with the pain? Now your face is a healthy color!”

            When I first got home, after sleeping, my back stiffened some. Each day it’s better when I wake. Thank You, Jesus. I sat in a recliner with no pain today for the first time.

            This last Tuesday night, a friend’s daughter called to see if I could free up my Wednesday so I could visit her mom. Her mother had surgery on Monday and she didn’t want her to be alone. It worked out and I was able to visit and bend to pick up her phone charger when it fell. Scrambled a few eggs and made toast for our breakfast. I started this blog post because I’ve had company over pretty steadily lately. She slept in her recliner on and off, so I took the time to write.

            We talked and talked. She showed me video clips, and Scriptures that inspired her. What a wonderful day!

            Then, I went home to see my grandson and my husband. The next week my other grandson came over before school starts in September!

            I hope you are well. May God bless you!