God’s blessings are very much on my mind today. We spent part of last night in the emergency room after a sudden severe pain in my knee rendered me unable to walk. I had been favoring that leg for a few weeks; my internist was unimpressed and suggested we “see how it goes.” Last night it went. Today I’m waiting for a call from the orthopedist and wearing an “immobilizer,” a very accurate name for the device that is keeping my knee from swiveling—or bending!
A few years ago Barbara Ehrenreich wrote Nickeled and Dimed: On (Not) Getting on in America. For six months she lived on nothing but the income she made waitressing or cleaning houses. Make that “and” not “or.” She discovered that no amount of diligent work at one job allowed her to cover rent, utilities, groceries, and gas. Paying the bills required two or even three jobs, none of which offered benefits. She also wrote about her fellow waiters and waitresses, maids and housecleaners and the obstacles they faced, especially lack of healthcare. Though older than some of her coworkers, she had the general health of someone who had always had good healthcare and nutrition. Some of her workmates were chronically ill, yet not coming to work meant losing a desperately needed job.
I am writing this at home, not in danger of losing my job. I, too, have always had good nutrition and healthcare, a loving family and friends. I have been blessed with education and exposure to travel and beauty in many forms. My list of reasons to thank God and support the church that formed and nurtures my faith is long and growing, even as age brings its inevitable changes. It is hard to imagine any life circumstance, including illness, that would prevent me from wanting to express deep gratitude for God’s goodness and life-giving love.
Tomorrow I will write a stewardship sermon that I’ll probably preach from the floor of the sanctuary (stairs are out for now.) My job will be to open the scriptures in ways that encourage us to share God’s limitless blessings through generous giving. Between now and Sunday I invite you to ponder you own blessings—giving particular thanks for that marvelous creation, the knee.
Scripture Reading: Exodus 33:12-23; Psalm 99; 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10; Matthew 22:15-22.