We are told to “bend at the knees” when we lift things all the time. We know it is the safest and best way to do it, but in haste we often bend at the waist, then lift, then pay the price. I recently tried to pick up a heavy box, not bending at the knees of course. Even though I immediately set it down the damage was done. A trip to the emergency room, which allowed me to donate a $300 copay to the hospital, led me to a diagnoses of a strained hip flexor. I didn’t even know I had a hip flexor, much less that an injury to it could lead to pain worse than childbirth. When I was leaving the emergency room the PA said, “Bend at the knees next time.” I would have kicked him in the shin, but apparently an injury to your hip flexor makes that difficult.
I knew to bend at the knees, but I just didn’t. How many times in our lives do we do the very same thing in our relationship with Christ? We know what we should do, but we just don’t. Paul deals with this struggle in Romans 7:15-19. Within that passage he says, “…for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not…” How do we overcome this?
- Try Again! Paul says a few verses later in Romans 8:1, “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.” Condemnation means an adverse sentence (the verdict). So we are told, when we are in Christ Jesus, there is no adverse sentence. Jesus paid our debt and now He wants us to try again. I can still lift a box, I just need to allow myself to fully heal and then do it right next time.
- Get Help – I should have never tried to lift a box that heavy. I have a stud for a husband that would have gladly grabbed the box, but I wanted to do it on my own. We need others around us who are striving to follow Christ just as we are. We need to get some help when we face an obstacle.
- Understand you have to be mindful of your injury – They told me my hip flexor would take a few weeks, maybe even a few months to get back to normal. Within three days I was just fine – or so I thought until I tried to lift some coolers a few weeks later. I bent at the knees, but I sure did feel that muscle again. I backed off and let someone else deal with it. That thing I wished I had never done still had some lasting effects and because of that I needed to be mindful to not get too close to it again.