About three months ago, my mother lost her voice. Since my mother and I live together, a lot of my friends teased me that this was a blessing in disguise. But after two months of living with whispering and repeated "what did you say?"s, my mother finally went to a series of doctors and got tested. We found out that she had severe bleeding underneath the lining of her vocal cords and she was placed on two weeks TOTAL VOICE REST! No talking, no singing, no whispering, nothing. Now, you might think this would be bliss, but you ain't never seen my mother trying to charade her way through an explanation of something...Lawd, hav mercy!
Well, we made it through the two weeks and my mom goes back to the doctor and is told, "you can talk on a LIMITED basis - you still need to rest your voice." So what does my mother do? Starts talking and laughing and talking and...you get the picture. I mean, it was so bad that I had people at church telling on my mother..."your momma is in there talking again"...and one sister even threatened to bring duct tape to the church to tape my mother's mouth. Needless to say, when my mom when back to the doctor this week, she was told NO TALKING again! So, we are back to charades, text messaging, erase boards at the dinner table and other creative forms of communicating - as well as a minimum of seven weeks of speech therapy and treatment - and beyond that, we have no idea when she will be able to talk, sing, or laugh without causing additional damage to her voice chords. ALL BECAUSE SHE COULD NOT BE OBEDIENT!
I can complain about it, but I'm really no different. God gave us instructions on how we are to care for ourselves, our bodies, our lives - and yet, daily I am disobedient. Two years ago, I was diagnosed with diabetes and placed on oral medications. I was told then, "you need to change your diet and exercise more", but have I done it? Uh...no. The Bible gives instruction on chastity and purity and modesty - yeah, I struggle with those issues on a daily...make that hourly basis! In the Bible, we are given principles about stewardship, diet, relationships - with God and with our fellow man - and yet, I am disobedient - I reach for the key lime pie instead of the apple - and consistently reap the consequences of that disobedience - larger sized clothing, wider hips, you get the picture.
And believe me, there are ALWAYS consequences. The enemy knew that when he tempted Eve in the garden. But he does not want to suffer the consequences of sin alone, so he tempts each of us every day to fall into his trap and suffer with him. I pray that each of us will think about how our actions impact us and what the true consequence of our disobedience can be as we go through each day.
The good news is we don't have to suffer the consequences. We can make a choice to do the right thing, follow the principles laid forth for us, and reap the benefits of obedience. IF my mother does what the doctors tell her, I am confident that she will be restored to full voice...but that will be the subject of another blog!