“Why Me?” Is usually the first thing we say when something bad happens. When my doctor said, “Jim, you will never walk again”, I was angry and turned to God demanding an explanation. ” I was a straight shooter and played by the rules, what did I do to deserve such a tragedy at age 14?” I was a sheltered kid who went to church and was trying to obtain a merit badge for lifesaving. Why couldn’t God allow this to happen to someone just about to rob a bank or steal a car? I refused to accept what was about to be my new way of life. I refused to work with my doctors and therapists. I tried so hard to lift my legs and move my fingers, but my progress hit a plateau. My plan to walk out of the hospital without a wheelchair was fading. I desperately and humbly turned to God and begged him for help. I prayed as if he was standing right at the foot of my bed. Before long my anger and unwillingness to work with my occupational and physical therapists disappeared. I started to view my wheelchair simply as a crutch that I must use until there is a cure for paralysis. I developed new interests particularly in the human body and nutrition. I had a brand-new attitude focusing on becoming independent in the wheelchair and one day becoming a physician.
As I look back, my frustration and anger was rooted in focusing entirely on my plan for life instead of considering what plans God had for my life. During a crisis, it is difficult to accept God’s plan as perfect and designed for the overall good. Our personal ambitions get in the way. It would be impossible for us to figure out or to rationalize why bad things happen to good people. We are not God. However, it is comforting to imagine that our awesome God has created and sustains the infinitely vast universe and multitude of complex life forms on earth. With this, I have faith that as part of His great creation, every individual has a special purpose in life. During a crisis, we have to have faith that our all-powerful God has created us for a reason and will continue to watch over us. In the meantime, we must use our God-given talents to continue living and pursuing our dreams in life. We have to give it our best and rely on God for the rest. Mathew 6:26 “Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? “