Focus off Pain

Back pain tends to upset whatever plans you have – whether that be world domination or just mowing the lawn. It comes like an uninvited guest and stays well beyond it’s welcome. You could kick it out, if only you could get off the couch…

I’ve spent the last few days in pain unable to do much. Even as a disabled man, I’ve found much I’d taken a lot for granted. It isn’t until you lose something you realise how valuable it is. Simple actions: rolling over in bed, standing up without pain, walking… heck, even being able to put your socks on is something to be thankful for.

It’s only been a few days, though with the weekend prior also affected it’s felt longer. It’s surprising how quickly those physical impediments started to dampen my mental disposition. I have a strong work ethic, and not being able to work – even for a few days – just felt wrong. I definitely have sympathy for those who are debilitated by constant pain and have had their plans and dreams significantly derailed because of it. Or even those who are out of work through no fault of their own.

It’s sometimes harder to do than say, but I’ve always found it’s better to focus on what you have, rather than what you miss. As my back pain recedes, there’s much more to be thankful of. And without the pain, I wouldn’t have recognised it afresh.

That’s not to say that all pain is gain. Sometimes that pain is horrendous; I’m not meaning to down-play that. The silver-lining is sometimes incredibly hard to find. But I do know that focusing on pain, you will be sucked into a vortex of pain, depression and bitterness.

Choose to find the things that are good in life… and focus on that. A healthy mind has a diet of joy, not sadness.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.

Philippians 4:8