The past week has been rough. I feel like a worthless blob around the house.
I'm still on crutches and it's painful to move the wrong way so I just can't get around the house to help Shari or the kids with much of anything. She's not complaining, in fact, being the servant she is, I think she likes helping and doing things for me. My kids have been great too. They bring me stuff, constantly ask me how I'm feeling, and even put my socks on for me each morning. How pathetic I am, I catch myself loathing.
I can't even really help with our foster baby. I can't get on the ground to play with her because getting back up is torture right now. Shari can't leave me alone with her because I have to be able to walk and carry her in case of an emergency. Basically I am of no value in the house other than to bark out orders of reinforcement for something Shari tells the kids to do.
I'd think of myself as a motionless slug right now except I can move, so I'm basically a slug that gets in the way. Tough trial for me, this bum leg thing.
My current situation doesn't effect my ministry at church too much as I'm able to study and interact with people on the phone and email. I've actually had a very productive week in those areas. I'm even working ahead on teaching preparation and have caught up on my back log of emails. I was able to lead chapel for school this week, I can stand alright for half an hour on crutches. My mouth is definitely not sprained. Coaching soccer is challenging, but again, I'm fully capable of barking out instructions. It's the home front that I feel my handicap so acutely.
This situation has been good for my pride problem. Why do I feel worthless sitting around the house (doing a blog post while my wife does the dishes)? It's partly because I derive too much worth and significance by what I do. Certainly it's fine to feel good about contributing to your household, work itself is a very good thing and being part of a family team effort is satisfying. Being honest however, based on what I am now learning, much of what I do around the house comes with the expectation of some kind of recognition. There's a sense in which I think my household contributions are what make me valued, needed, and respected. Now I'm laid up and more of a burden then a help, yet no one is complaining about it, in fact everyone seems happy to help me! What's up with that? They seem to love serving me even when I am totally unable to reciprocate. That bothers me. Why? Because I am so driven to think in terms of work equalling worth. If they love me by serving me, maybe they don't need me like I think they do? Shouldn't they be aware of their need for me? What's going on here?
God has given me a stellar wife and awesome children. Their unselfish, anxious service of their gimpy husband and father is a real show of God's grace to me. I want so badly to be recognized for what I do, yet, when I am unable to do anything, God is teaching me it is all of Him.
My current condition should be relatively short-lived but I hope I remember the attitude of service my family is exhibiting and emulate it. I hope my motivation for contributing to the household is done with a more gracious and thankful attitude going forward.