My knees have started to fail me. After years of being a little creaky but functional, they are downright obstreperous now. When I get up after sitting cross-legged or from crouching, it takes several questionable seconds before they will hold my weight. It is a little scary.
I could fall, if they fail me. Where is this headed? Am I soon to be crippled? I’m too young for this.
I walk, and do water aerobics and yoga, but it isn’t enough apparently. I have incorporated a special exercise in the water just to strengthen my knees. I have to do it at least weekly or walking up stairs is a bear.
Perhaps I should give up sitting cross-legged or crouching, but my Laotian neighbor, thirty years my senior, can still do this with no problems. Asian women sit like this all the time. So it is possible. It has nothing to do with age, but expectations.
We stop doing it because we think we have to stop doing it – and then we can’t do it. This applies to a lot of things. The whole “self-fulfilling prophecy” thing, you know.
Yesterday I had to work on the ivy by the driveway. It has taken over, and it is difficult to eradicate. I cut it out by hand, using small clippers. It is very labor-intensive. I dislike this chore, but it is best to do it this way. The other choices involve weed eating, which will destroy the monkey grass underneath, or poisonous chemicals. Not happening.
I’d worked on this the day before and not liked the grab and pull method I was using, so yesterday I crouched and shuffled along, cutting the vines at the base of the monkey grass. This seemed to work well, but I was a bit worried about how my knees would react to this abuse. Outside, I didn’t have something to push up from like I do in the living room. How would I support myself when I got up?
So I prayed about it.
I’ve read Louise Hay’s book, “You Can Heal Your Life”, and I remember her saying that emotional issues manifest in physical ways. She has a whole list of each physical symptom and what emotional dysfunction it represents. She believes that if you fix the emotional problem, and you’ve fixed the physical problem. I believe that you can fix the emotional problem by working on the physical problem as well, but that is another post.
I couldn’t remember what knees represent on her list, so I asked God what lesson I needed to learn from my failing knees. I needed the answer then, before I got up. Instead of checking a book or the Internet, I dialed direct for the answer.
The answer was that I was failing to trust that God will provide, that God is in charge. I was trying to rely all on my own power. I was trying to hold myself up, forgetting that God holds me up.
Once I accepted this and relaxed into it, admitting and admiring that God is in charge of everything, I took a breath and stood up, unassisted.
With no failure.
With no problem.
And it has been so ever since.
I try to remember to pray now, every time I stand up, remembering that the Lord is in charge. I don’t have a specific prayer that I use, because I believe that God wants our prayers to be from us, and not empty mutterings.
Here are some Bible verses that harmonize with this.
O LORD, thou hast searched me and known me!
2 Thou knowest when I sit down and when I rise up;
thou discernest my thoughts from afar.
3 Thou searchest out my path and my lying down,
and art acquainted with all my ways.
4 Even before a word is on my tongue,
lo, O LORD, thou knowest it altogether.
5 Thou dost beset me behind and before,
and layest thy hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high, I cannot attain it.
7 Whither shall I go from thy Spirit?
Or whither shall I flee from thy presence?
8 If I ascend to heaven, thou art there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, thou art there!
9 If I take the wings of the morning
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
10 even there thy hand shall lead me,
and thy right hand shall hold me.
11 If I say, “Let only darkness cover me,
and the light about me be night,”
12 even the darkness is not dark to thee,
the night is bright as the day;
for darkness is as light with thee.
13 For thou didst form my inward parts,
thou didst knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise thee, for thou art fearful and wonderful.
Wonderful are thy works!
Thou knowest me right well;
15 my frame was not hidden from thee,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately wrought in the depths of the earth.
16 Thy eyes beheld my unformed substance;
in thy book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.
17 How precious to me are thy thoughts, O God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 If I would count them, they are more than the sand.
When I awake, I am still with thee. (RSV)
Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. (RSV)