(ROCKWALL, TX — January 29, 2018) Folks often ask me why I say “bless” so often. I even have a plaque a friend gave me that says, “Bless”. I suppose I say it because I am blessed. Blessed to know you. Blessed to have kids that love me. Blessed to have 47 years of forgiveness under my belt. Blessed to have known Mother for 70 of her soon-to-be-100 years.
Should I go on? I am a blessed individual.
But what if everything the world decides is a blessed life… success, wealth, position, prestige… what if ALL of that were taken away from us? Would we still feel like we were blessed individuals? No, I don’t think so.
Our precious souls at Broadmoor, those whose gray matter is still thinking in the present, might not feel as if they are blessed. Their legs don’t work. Their hands don’t work. Their worldly possessions have been placed in a centrifuge and spun down to fit into a 12’/6’ space.
The families of our folks who do not live in the present would probably agree that the days of being blessed are long gone, that heaven would be a greater blessing, but at this point that’s not on the calendar.
In one of King David’s writings he declared that God has written a book about each of us, and in that book, are written all the days that He has ordained for us. I have to confess that I would like to rip out a couple chapters of my book… pages that have described events that at casual reading would not be considered a blessed life.
But in actuality, it’s those dark, tear-stained pages that tell the real story of why I am so blessed. It’s the scars of my life that have amazingly produced the greatest blessings… the blessings of perspective, of survival, of endurance. Only pain brings those blessings. Amazing that pain can bring blessing!
For those of us who bring a blessing to the residents at Broadmoor or to anyone who is experiencing difficulties, we must use our own journeys as a launching pad, carrying us from there to here. Hope for some of them is heaven.
For others it’s simply being strengthened enough to live alone for a few more years. We must graciously use our scars, our own experience with enduring the pains of life to encourage them…TO BLESS THEM.
For some of us who are caretakers or caregivers, our own pain has had a crippling effect. We’re the ones in the wheelchairs, emotionally. We don’t have that perspective yet…the grace of pain. It will come. The anger will calm. A scar will form. Scars usually don’t disappear. Let’s begin to see them as badges of honor. Badges of perspective, of survival… of blessing.
By Paula Lively. Paula is a Volunteer Chaplain at Broadmoor Medical Lodge in Rockwall. She is a VERY retired RN who loves serving the residents at Broadmoor. She and her husband, Fred, have lived in Rockwall for 15 years.
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